Neuropsychology Testing and Diagnoses: ASD, Depression, and ADHD

At the end of April, I underwent 10 hours (over a three day period) of neuropsychological testing and interviewing. Obviously, to go through the data of 10 hours of testing takes a while, so I had to wait until June 5th to get my results. Only a very small part of the results were actually a surprise, and none of it was bad news.

autism-1417942_1920I was officially diagnosed on the autism spectrum! Yes, this is good news for me, and validates the “I think my brain works differently than the average population” feeling I’ve had my entire life. My official diagnosis is “autism spectrum disorder, level 1, without significant language or intellectual impairment” (because they like to make diagnosis names as long as possible). I’ll get more into the details of this diagnosis below.

I was also given a secondary diagnosis of “other specified depressive disorder,” which seems to essentially just be a moderate and persistent depression that doesn’t fit the diagnostic criteria for other depressive disorders; this wasn’t a surprise at all because I have had depression since I was in late elementary school (maybe about 10 years old), and have been treated off and on for years. Continue reading

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Chronic Living – Buzzfeed

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Living With A Health Problem | Buzzfeed

Here’s a collection of good quotes about living as a young adult with chronic health issues.

Natural Therapy

Oh man, do I miss hiking. Dan and I used to go hiking all the time. We both used to go hiking all the time long before we met each other.

day 4 imageFor me, nature was always a kind of natural medicine. I’ve struggled with depression for most of my life, but being out in nature… well, that was a different story. Hiking out into the trees, getting away from people, getting away from cars, getting away from noise, it always calmed my soul down. I love the smell of pine trees, especially in the cool air, and the sound they make when the wind blows through them. It really is amazing how fast it can work. I have gone hiking because I was angry, because I was sad, just because I felt the need to, and it is almost always immediate. The second I’m into nature, I start to feel a change. Everything in my body relaxes. My breathing slows and deepens. My brain actually shuts off and focuses for once. I feel relaxed and happy.

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Midterms

I had my World Regional Geography midterm on Thursday last week. It was pretty easy for me, but I’ve also been finding classwork extremely interesting and always sharing it with Dan, so it gets stuck in my head. I’m hoping I did well on it. I feel as though I got an A, because I really don’t think I missed enough to get a B. Some of his answer choices were hilarious. Hopefully, I’ll get the exam back so I can share 😛

Today is my Forensic Anthropology midterm. I’m kind of nervous. She gave us a study guide, but it’s pretty much “study everything.” Thanks. She gave it to us Thursday. I’ve been struggling with my health a bit, so I have been having a very hard time studying. However, the osteology test we had was far easier than anyone expected, so hopefully the midterm will be too. I’m studying right now (well, I was, and I will be again). The test will start at 3p today. Keep your fingers crossed for me!

fingers crossed

My Chronic Illnesses (part 1)

I suffer from several invisible, chronic illnesses: asthma, allergies, irritable bowel syndrome, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, depression, most likely misophonia, insomnia, migraines, plantar fasciitis, fibromyalgia, temporal mandibular joint dysfunction, eosinophilic esophagitis, lactose intolerance/sensitivity, and postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome. The purpose of this post series is to explain these conditions further and when I was diagnosed. I, unfortunately, have so many conditions that this would be far too long for a single post, so I’ll be talking about them in the rough order of diagnosis (or onset if it was obvious enough to determine the exact start). If you want to know more about me as a person, please read my About Me section.

This post will cover: asthma, allergies, irritable bowel syndrome, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, depression, most likely misophonia, and insomnia.

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