Mental health / ADD note

Mental health / ADD note: I went to see a new-to-me psychiatrist this morning (whom I’ll call Dr. L.), for a couple of reasons. One, for ADD management, I wanted to talk about adding a micro dose of Adderall, to help ease the crankiness that tends to set in at 5 p.m. She was in favor, so I think I’ll be trying that soon.

(Interestingly, she noted that my Vyvanse was at a very conservative dosage at 20 mg., that going up to 70 was within the standard bounds, and so I might think about trying a slightly higher dose of that as well, and see how it felt. Maybe, we’ll see. Adderall micro-dose adding first, let that run for a while, see where we are.)

Two, I also have been feeling pretty darn stressed abut a host of writing career / arts admin / how I spend my time issues, and I was starting to feel like I could really use a neutral professional to help me sort it out.

I mean, I talk to you guys about it all too, and of course Kevin and Jed and various close friends, which is helpful. But a psychiatrist has a different framework, a different angle of view, which I think is also helpful. I got a bit teary twice in the session, which I think is a strong indicator that yes, I could use a little help getting to a more stable place on these things.

Good session, unfortunately expensive, as it isn’t covered by my insurance. I’m hoping we can find the budget to do at least three more 45 minute sessions with her, as I suspect that’ll likely be enough to help me sort through the current set of career issues. (And after that, maybe we can manage a once-a-month check in? That’d be good.)

Even in this first laying-the-groundwork session, Dr. L. asked me a couple of questions that I hadn’t even considered, so that was interesting and useful.

“Did your distractedness and difficulty with focus become more intense after chemo & radiation?” Huh. Maybe! I had honestly never thought about tracking that.

As a general note, I think:

• mental health is as important as physical health
• in an ideal society, all healthcare would be free
• healthcare cost would pay for itself in the happiness and increased productivity of its citizens
• healthcare should also cover massage, yoga, & meditation / mindfulness practices
• in that society, I’d love to see normalized that everyone gets a proper physical and mental health checkup annually, moving to quarterly or more frequently as one gets older and at need.

(Of course, also maintaining complete confidentiality, so employers, etc. can’t use any of that against you in this capitalist world we currently live in.)

In the old world, a good parish priest or rabbi might have served some of this function, but for the secular among us, I don’t think we really have anything else like it. A neutral, kind, professional, who only wants to help you be your best self.

That’s a great social good, surely.

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