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Last Words by Dr. Davenport

21 Doctors And Nurses Share The Creepiest Last Words Uttered By A Patient Before Dying | Thought Catalog

A Quiz, for which there is no answer key; it is meant to evoke thought, ideas, conversation and – maybe – action:

A briefcase is for:
___ storage
___ transportation
___ temporary housing
___ stand-in picnic basket


When you are at lunch with friends or colleagues and your watch alarm rings, signaling you the time for your next dose of medication, you do the following:
___ turn it off and quietly take your medication
___ turn it off
___ turn it off, excuse yourself from the table, and take your medication in the ladies’ room
___ fumble about, go red in the face, explain to everyone about your medicine, your diagnosis, symptoms, and get mixed up before you’re through, forgetting whether you actually took it, or not
___ what alarm watch?


When you are late for a meeting again, you:
___ decide there have been too many of these, and just skip it entirely
___ go ahead and enter, but say nothing
___ apologize quickly and sit down, trying to get up to speed
___ make up a plausible untruth (stalled car on the freeway, emergency phone call, etc.)


If you are asked by a community or social group to contribute to its effort something that you do not do well, you handle it in the following way:
___ agree to do it, figuring to find someone else to hand it off to later
___ simply refuse, saying that is not something you could possibly handle
___ ask for a different job, and make a suggestion of the type of thing you can do
___ explain how you have AD/HD and all the ways it impairs you, how you just can’t do one more thing, and hope they don’t ask again


If you are in a public meeting and some one makes a joke about AD/HD, you:
___ burst into tears
___ take umbrage and stand up, immediately registering your displeasure with the humorist, describing the difficulties you and your family live with daily as a result of the disorder
___ find the person afterwards and quietly tell her or him in a few words what it was like to hear that “joke,” and offer to share accurate information
___ do nothing, but knit faster


When you realize, on the way to pick up the dry cleaning before a couple of other errands, that you have missed a dose of medication by an hour or so, and the “other couple of errands” are foggy in your mind, never mind what comes next, your response to this is:
___ agitation, weeping, taking the medication and forging ahead, locking your keys in the car outside the bank
___ a sinking feeling, taking your medication, then sit in the car awhile with the magazine you keep handy for such moments, and in 20 minutes or so a slow approach to the drycleaners, talking yourself through the steps carefully until you can tell you have your brain function back
___ give it all up and go home, since you don’t have your meds with you anyway


One day the phone rings, and it’s a friend, some one you like a lot, and you know she likes you, though you’re aware you confuse her some; and she asks you for a book you borrowed from her last spring. You don’t exactly remember borrowing it, you’re pretty sure you must have because you do know you’d be certain that you hadn’t if that were the case, but not recalling anything about it provides you no information on its current whereabouts. And, this is a friend you want to keep. You:
___ gasp audibly and apologize for the awful delay, tell her you’ll hunt it down and call her back about it before nightfall
___ tell her you are about to leave for the day and will get it to her the next day, only later realizing you didn’t actually take down the name and author of the book
___ ask her specifically for the name and author, write them down, tell her you’ll get the book to her today (and cancel an appointment in order to do so), and purchase a new one; when she inquires about it, you tell her that her copy got too much use and since you were so tardy in returning it, you wanted her to have a new one.
___ gasp, tell her you’re having a hard time remembering the book, ask for the name and author, ask how urgent is her need; then decide to search or purchase in a given timeframe, and do it. Along the way, you can give her some minimal information about the trouble you have with organization, memory and other executive functions, and then work out a system for handling borrowed items in the future to prevent such goofs; and thank her for the opportunity to figure out a problem that’s been plaguing you for years.


It’s almost suppertime, and you haven’t any idea what’s for supper; or what ought to be for supper; and there isn’t anyone to ask. A scan of the fridge is both a poor way to get inspiration and results in that “leftover” demoralization you could do without; your ability to project your mind ahead by three hours has you agitated about late bedtimes, again, and now here comes your husband. In the door, his eyes take you in, and right away, they sweep to the stove, the table, he sniffs the air, loses his smile, and you SNAP. Angry words erupt, and while you’re immediately sorry, the damage is done, you feel inadequate, again, and supper is still a question mark. Now, your solution is:
___ to disappear upstairs for a long while; they are all old enough to fend for themselves
___ apologize for your outburst, declare it Family-Get-It-Together-Night, and assemble everyone to forage, and share, from cereal to soup, ice cream to cheese sandwiches, cole slaw and apples with peanut butter; cleanup the same
___ make a pot of oatmeal, light some candles, call everyone to the table, and bring out a pad and pencil for brainstorming “What we can have for suppers”
___ tell everyone to leave you alone in the kitchen awhile; the adrenaline has just given you enough brain activity to think of something, and you cook a regular meal, which is fine, though late, and you just go on as before with another too-late evening, but it’s better than fighting about it


For the skillionth night in a row, you can’t get to sleep. You are lying in bed, your thoughts jumping from one thing to another. Having followed your doctor’s advice when you began stimulant treatment, you have not taken any medication since 6:00 p.m. so it should have worn off long ago; your last look at the clock told you it is I:45 a.m. Actually, you’ve had this sleep trouble since childhood, so it can’t be blamed on stimulants, and when you tell your doctor about it, he wants to prescribe sleeping medicine.
___ it seems to you the jumping around of your thoughts is exactly what they do in the day, but your body is idle now, so you notice it more, and it prevents sleep
___ you wonder if maybe you have some other disorder besides AD/HD
___ somewhere you read that stimulants help children get to sleep because they don’t stimulate, so much as they regulate by stimulation of the part of the brain that handles the sleep-wake cycle, or arousal, something like that…
___ maybe a cup of coffee wouldn’t hurt, as an experiment; it never could wake you up, or keep you awake; maybe it would help you sleep!

And now, because there is a list a mile long of other items about which we could ask a question and ponder multiple answers, and because the one pressing in on me at the moment pertains to how much is enough, and when to say “when,” and it is confounded as always with matters of Time, and Priorities, and Doing Other Things at the Right Time and not Later On — I am going to wind this up with some of the rest of the notes from my list, and you may generate your own finish. Here goes:

Family gathering, too much noise, you can’t think…

Taking medication, still hyper-reacting to everything, emotionally reactive, doctor thinks it’s anxiety and you know it is not…

Your house, which if you lived alone could be tidy and organized now that you’ve been diagnosed and take medication, is a wreck, again…

Conversing with people, you keep interrupting…

Many phone messages to call back on, can’t seem to do it, what to do…

Saturday, last night you had lots of good ideas, now you’re inert…

As above, and your doctor thinks it’s depression, you don’t…

Every night the same, supper almost on time, and still the kids are getting to bed too late, hard to get them going in the morning, tempers flare…

School notices come home saying permission slips were not sent back, responses from you about projects were not sent in…

Do jot down your ideas and answers, and more if you’ve thought of them, and send them directly to me. I’ll see that they get published. Please include whether you will be willing to have us include your name, or not.


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