Since my post the other day, I have had a few people asking me about my diagnosis process and whether or not I had pursued an autism diagnosis.
All my life, I had felt something wasn’t quite right. I didn’t seem to fit in places I was supposed to, or achieve all the things I was told that I would. As an adult, I saw numerous therapists who let me talk and I was constantly put on antidepressants, however nothing in life changed and I wasn’t given any supports to make life better. I kept pushing through and trying to do the things I was supposed to.
When I was a teen, my dad was interested in the Myers Briggs personality types and I worked out I am INTP in that system, however I still couldn’t get life to fit my personality and kept being diagnosed with depression, and things didn’t feel quite right.
A few years ago, a few of my friends posted on social media that they had been diagnosed with ADHD. Following their posts, I kept thinking ‘that sounds like me’! I started researching ADHD and found I ticked many of the boxes, not all, but many of them.
I had reached out to our local council looking for some support and we were linked in with someone to help with NDIS applications. As part of that, I asked about an ADHD assessment and was put on a waiting list.
My first appointment with the neuropsychologist was around this time last year. I brought in my school reports that had been gathering dust in my filing cabinet (sometimes it pays to hold on to things) and started going through my life as I remembered it. Over a few sessions, there were a series of tests to see how my brain functioned.
She told me that she had identified autism in me in the first 15 minutes of talking with her! This really surprised me, mostly because of what I had grown up thinking autism was! I also have a high IQ, according to her tests, however the results were inconsistent, which is a key indicator of neurodiversity.
By the end of it, I was diagnosed with autism and ADHD! At first, I wasn’t quite sure what to do with this, but the more I read and the more I learn about my brain, the more understanding I have. I wasn’t lazy or procrastinating or a loser growing up. I was doing the best I can with what I had.
You know what? The more I learn about my brain, the more I can see how amazing it is. It’s what helps me think of weird and wonderful stories as well as writing prompts that engage even reluctant writers. At work, it has helped me think outside the box and problem solve.
I’m still bad at housework, forget to turn off the oven occasionally, and am disorganised, but that’s not who I am. I am pretty amazing and have a brilliant brain that helps me do wonderful things.