Friday, October 14, 2005

October's Artsy Essay....

Judi's Essay this month is:  The one thing I would most like you to know about me........  

Those who read here, know I am intelligent.  Some might say very or extremely, and MENSA would agree with them.  My IQ is high and I have been tested repeatedly over the years to verify that.  I make no effort to hide it, usually, and often feel that I flaunt that aspect of me, when I try not to do so.  

I try not to make people uncomfortable when I am around them.  I have, over the years, learned to control my impulses to correct others, whether it be grammar, spelling, or in general.  But that journey was a long and difficult one. 

What people don't know is that this 'intelligence' comes with a price.  A very high price, at times.  

My best and longest friend, my 'sister', Melody, will say things like "There you go using those big words again."  So I used to dummy down.  I am a master at dummying down now.  I find I do it subconsciously, at times.  I go on auto-pilot or instinct.  But it depends on who I am around.  

This is not the problem, though.  Not even close.  What I am about to write may surprise my closest readers.  Then again, maybe not.  Of course, knowing them as I do, I'll still have their love, respect and support, but it's time to confess.  

One reason I keep getting tested is because, even though my IQ is 130-135 range, I cannot perform the simplist of daily routines without a list, or something written down in my face, all the time.  Now before you guys start thinking you make to do lists, that is not what I'm writing about here.  

I mean, I have to have a note to remind me to brush my teeth.  I have to write down the day I take a shower, so I can remember to take another in a timely fashion (yeah, I know that is disgusting, but it is the truth).  I have to write down the time to pick Grace up from preschool, go to work, and for any appointments.  

This is something only three people have known.  Until now.  Now, with Judi's essay prompting me, the world knows.  Well, maybe not the world... but it's out here.... in the open.   

When I was young, I could not understand what was wrong with me.  People at school seemed to have everything together.  They could make plans in an instant when I couldn't, for the life of me, remember what I had to do.  They could remember school assignments, chapters to read, and what they did last week.  I'd be lucky to know what day it was.  

I never told my parents until well into my college career (12 years there~ what would you call it?)  It was beyond them to help at that point.  Had I mentioned it sooner, they may have found help somewhere.  Instead, I felt ashamed that I couldn't remember the easiest tasks, so I kept it hidden.  

Once I went to work at the hospital, I started talking to doctors about my situation.  This is when all the testing started.  I was 19.  Now, my IQ has always been high, even through school.  It has been documented since the beginning of my formal education in Kindergarten.  I was always doing work from two or three grades higher than the grade level I was assigned. Then, they called me 'gifted', I called it cursed.  

That, in itself, caused problems as my classmates would make fun of me.  Maybe this caused the issues I have today with social graces... but it was kids being kids.  It just stuck to my brain and never left.  Like a lot of things....  

I was once told that those considered genuis, had similar problems to mine.  Einstein had some of the same issues.  Hitler, also a genuis, had the extreme version of this syndrome.  It drove him crazy.  I wonder about myself sometimes....  

I have yet to find a medical name for what goes on in my head.  No doctors have a clue, though some called me bi-polar, I don't believe that label.  My moods don't change.  I don't change.  I just cannot remember the simple, everyday things that people do.   

The only thing about me that changes is my ever-increasing thirst for learning.  I can't get enough!  My fear is that it seems, now, the more I learn, the more 'normal' things I forget.  It's like I've filled up my brain's filing cabinet, so everything new I put in, something has to be removed.  The things I 'lose' are the mundane tasks one should not forget!  

The other side of this, is the social one.  I can write and write and write, but when it comes to face-to-face contact, or phone contact.. I am an unsocial clutz!  I cannot think of what to say.  I have a difficult time making small talk.  So, to those who have wondered why I don't call or IM much, now you know why...  

If there is a subject to discuss or something that I can relate to, it is no problem.  But to just come up with conversation... well, I just suck at it.  I keephoping, one day, I'll figure out how to be 'normal'.  I've been waiting about 30 years now :)  

So, there you have it.  What goes on inside Kitty's head... or what doesn't ;)  

Thank you, Judi, for the inspiration and the opportunity to come clean.  Thanks to my friends here, who gave me the ability to trust them with my 'secret'.   

Now you all know.....  

Cat

17 comments:

billandnae said...

Wow.


Undoubtedly the most intense thing I have ever read in J-Land.

This completely changes our friendship...I love you even more!  Your a special breed of Kitty!

There has to be information out there somewhere!  I don't think the internet has fallen completely into the hands of pornography.

~Love you, you big smarty pants~

~V~

P.S.  I'm looking into this right now. I am completely intrigued.  

ckays1967 said...

This really cracks me up....did you know that Einstein could not spell either?
Not to save his soul.

I also have been cursed with a high IQ (140-145) but can not remember my way out of a paper bag with a flash light and a map.  Go figure.

I call it Adult ADD.  Moms just calls it bored....  but since I am approaching fourty I guess it is time to just own up to the situation and say I get just lose interest very, very quickly and my brain moves on.

You are not alone.
You are not alone.
You are not aolne.

judithheartsong said...

What a brave and powerful essay. I am honored that you took the topic and wrote something so meaningful. You are an amazing person and this forthright essay is a gem.
And people will love you more for being human.
judi

quartrlyfecrysis said...

Wow Kitty :)  I love you even more!

I've been labeled 'gifted' since before starting school.  Had, and i mean HAD, to go to all the accelerated classes and programs...no matter how much kids teased.  After a while I realized that I hurt people's feelings, and I had to learn to dumb down.  Sucks sometimes when you know something but "can't" say the answer.

I've always been very forgetful tho, VERY!  and it's worse now than when I was younger <wink, wink>  I too have lists and daily schedules and if I don't read them, I really don't remember to do them.  If I call and leave someone a message I always have to check the calendar to see what day it is.

In case you didn't notice, I don't IM or do chatrooms much either, and I don't like to talk on the phone for a long time...short and sweet, get to the point.  I'm not good at small talk, and that really upsets some people, but them some people like that I really only want to delve in deep discussions.  I get it, a lot of people label me a bitch because of it.  

Of course, I feel insane because I analyze every little thing to death.  If I can't figure something out, it infuriates me.  I will argue a point I believe true into the ground.  And I will get bloody mad if someone tells me I'm 'crazy'.  lol...whatever you do, never tell Bernie she has a chemical imbalance or she's stupid;)  But I am bi-polar...just don't tell me that to my face ;)~
LMAO, kitty just jumped in my lap ;)  Good kitty :)          
                                          ~*XOXOXO*~
                                              ~Bernie

onecrazymomto5 said...

Well I am glad that you got that off your chest.  It must be hell trying to hide that from the world!  You seem to me to have taken ahold of it and be in control of it instead of it being in control of you!  Now I have no medical expertise at all but is there a possibility that the part of your brain that holds the "normal" everyday routine issues is smaller and the part that holds all the collected learned information is larger?  Did that make sense?  Like your filing cabinet theory but instead of being full the everyday cabinet is actually like an envelope - only large enough to hold a small amount of information.  The fact that a lot of other geniuses have had this problem says something!  Whether it is coincedence or medical is something else!!
Colleen

redbaranjj said...

I am so glad you wrote this essay about yourself.  I am proud of you for being able to put it out there and trust your readers.  I for one have always loved coming to your journal.  Topics you have wrote about, I have always found interesting, and I have learned something.  And that's a wonderful thing for you to share your knowledge with others.  :)  
And about your daily tasks...my doctor told me it's a part of my hypothyroidism, that it effects the short term memory.  Don't know if it's true, but it made me feel better when making out my list every day of things not to forget.  
*hugs* Cat.  I am proud of you!  

billandnae said...

How about Aricept, or Nemenda?  Alzheimer's medication?  Does this also mean that you may have it one day?

chasenkids said...

This was a wonderful essay... powerful and real.

~Jaime
jaimechase.com

sarajanesmiles said...

Has anyone ever thought that you might have Aspergers?  That's the high functioning end of the spectrum, people with Aspergers are often very intelligent, and it would explain the social thing.  Just a suggestion, and probably completely wrong, but thought I would mention it just in case you hadn't ever thought along those lines ;o)  Hope you don't mind.  Fascinating entry, and I can relate to the social thing.  I don't use IM's, and I hate to make small talk, I just can't do it, my brain freezes, lol!!  
Sara   x

globetrotter2u said...

I had a very dear friend who was like this. I couldn't understand how someone so smart could have such a need to make so many "to do" lists! I am glad that I understand a little bit better, thanks to your candid entry.
Maryanne
http://journals.aol.com/globetrotter2u/Myfeelingsarereal/

pixiedustnme said...

wow, and I thought I was a freak >giggle<  I can relate on so many levels.  Although I am thankful that my situation is not this bad.  I hope someday you find a better way to conquer this than making lists.  http://journals.aol.com/pixiedustnme/Inmyopinion/entries/1304

peppypioneer said...

Thanks for sharing Cat.  I very much got into reading your story.  It sounds like you are making the necessary adaptations to get along in the world.  I too have a problem with the "social graces", mostly because I'm shy, though most who see me professionally wouldn't believe it. But when it comes to social interaction with people I don't know very well I become a real wallflower.  Thanks.  Paulette

sieblonde said...

This was a difficult challenge Judi offered this month.  You rose to it wonderfully.  ~Sie

justaname4me2 said...

Wow, reading your words, you have no idea what a help it may forever be for me. My youngest daughter is like you. A master mind, high IQ, well beyond her years, yet, she doesn't sleep at night, she forgets the simple things in life, she's scattered the majority of the time. Our doctor insists it's normal, and almost expected because of her abilities.
Wow, thank you for sharing your entry with us on this very tough contest. I think I'm going to have my Kaitlyn read your entry too and see how she feels about your words.
Rebecca

visionarydiva1 said...

Nice Essay Cat.

Amy
http://journals.aol.com/visionarydiva1/AVisionaryDiva/

bedazzzled1 said...

This was a fascinating entry. It would seem to me you still have those "files" which contain the simple routines and tasks, but they have been scattered. Misfiled. I am sure it has to be very frustrating. That bipolar label absolutely does not fit you, in my opinion.

I would never give up learning for fear it will cause more mundane activities to become lost. Perhaps it will be your thirst for knowledge that will help you find a name for what your affliction is! And just maybe a solution to it will be in the offing.

Good luck.

oceanmrc said...

It's amazing just how many challenges life can throw at us.