After hearing about Luca Forgeois, I knew I had to share his experience here on The Adult ADHD Blog! This young man is doing BIG things, and he’s living successfully with ADHD! You can visit his website here, and check out his story below! Way to go, Luca – Keep inspiring others and helping me get the word out about Adult ADHD!
Keeping a “Racing” Mind On Track: Open Wheel Luca Forgeois on his struggles with ADHD
I don’t remember when I was specifically diagnosed. I was going through a lot in public school and my beyond-short attention span paired with my dyslexia was affecting my ability to learn. Life was not very fun. I was going through a period in my life when everything and everyone seemed to be going against me. For the longest time I didn’t quite understand how others got through everything with such ease and yet, when I tried it was a monumental task to achieve anything. My mind was racing everywhere and thinking of everything besides the subject I was supposed to paying attention to. Focusing on “the task at hand” didn’t mean much to me.
I was put in a “special” school for kids with learning disabilities around 4th grade. After three years there, that didn’t quite work out with my “unique” approach to things. My problem with all of it? The educational system. It’s just not right. I was taught that thinking one specific way is the only correct way, and that way is the only way you will successfully get through the system. We are encouraged to think “outside of the box.” We put our youth in a box and force them under, only allowing them to ponder within the conformity of that box: teaching things one way and one way only.
What saved me from caving in was two things: medication and my tutor. The most important was probably the help of my great tutor and mentor, Ms.Erin Gorski. After being kicked out of the second school, I went into home schooling. Erin taught me discipline and work ethic. She knew I was handicapped, so she pushed me intellectually to surpass. I remember when I was in grade 7 at my home at the end of the year and she told me to write a 14-page college paper about an Engineering topic. I was aggravated with her. She forced me to do it with perfect grammar and put me on a deadline. I got it done and I did quite well.
Once I went back into a normal school, I understood why Erin put me through all of that. All the really hard stuff taught me the invaluable discipline I needed to help my ADHD. High school all of a sudden seemed easier.
The final thing that helped me was the launch of my racing career during high school. It gave me something to think about besides school. Racing was my heart and my passion and helped me motivate myself to just get through school. Once you get through school the world opens up to you. There are restrictions, sure, but you are equipped with the ability to work around them. After graduation, your mind is YOURS.
Like the great Sigmund Freud believed about our early years of life, my mentality was hardened and developed in my formative years. I developed mentally from my weaknesses and built on them. I was initially broken down and rebuilt by mental hardship and adversity. Everybody is afraid of adversity. The difference now? When somebody is telling me something can’t be done, it just makes me want to try even harder. Everybody is driven by something different. If I have one straight forward piece of advice on how to get through it all with ADHD it’s this: You are unique in the way you think, and you should never think less of yourself. When adversity presents itself, just tell yourself this is a test and surpass it with whatever methods necessary that have worked for you. Remember, It’s all about the road less traveled.