Diagnosis

When I think about diagnoses like Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Autism, I often think of my people.

And most importantly, my parents.

Refugees.

Trying their best to leave an imprint in a new country. While carrying the burdens of their past. The misunderstandings of their country of origin. And the misconceptions of their future.

I imagine how scary it was for them.

To hear their children’s school officials tell them their child has ADHD and Autism.

And the questions they must’ve had.

But the language barrier that interfered with their ability to find answers.

Their challenges of understanding the importance of these diagnoses.

Because often times when we are given a diagnosis, we see it almost as a death sentence.

A phrase.

Words stamped on our foreheads that stay with us forever.

Carrying the weight of all these issues we have.

The symptoms.

I think often times, people forget the benefits of having a diagnosis.

It gives those of us with these mental health conditions a greater understanding.

An awareness of who we are and an appreciation for the challenges we face.

The ability to understand our symptoms. And the capacity to find ways to overcome them.

Because a diagnosis doesn’t have to be our death sentence.

It doesn’t have to be our validation to play the, “I can’t because I have this.”

Instead, it gives us the power to learn more about ourselves. And the ability to adapt to our circumstances so we can overcome.

It gives us the opportunity to succeed regardless.

And the statement to strive beyond greatness because we now know. And knowledge is power.

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