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A Day in The Life of a Writer Living With ADHD

In honour of ADHD Awareness Month, Oluchukwu Nwabuikwu shows us a day in his life as an ADHD-diagnosed writer.

5:17 AM

I open my eyes for the first time since sleeping by sometime past one. The house is so quiet aside from the hum of all the air conditioners. I never get enough sleep - five hours max on a good day, so waking up this early isn’t new to me. But yesterday was very stressful and I am determined to get some rest today. It’s a Saturday for God’s sake. I open Spotify and hit play on my “Sleep” playlist which is really just a combination of rain sounds. I close my eyes and will myself to sleep, begging God to grant me this one wish. He answers and soon enough, everything fades to black…

8:12 AM

I am woken up by a bird singing at my window, I feel like a Disney Princess. I am very surprised birds still sing in this economy, to be honest. My mouth is very bitter, so I head to the bathroom to brush my teeth (and tongue). I go back to my bed and check all my socials; WhatsApp, Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram and TikTok. I know I shouldn’t open TikTok last, but I always forget. Now I’m scrolling and scrolling…

9:52 AM

Aunty J shouts my name from downstairs and I shout a “yes?” in return. My food is ready, she says. I say okay and dash to the bathroom for a quick shower.

10:12 AM

Breakfast is a healthy serving of pap and akara, Aunty J really understands the assignment. I see a notification from Slack and make a mental note to respond to it later. I go back to scrolling on Twitter with my left hand and shoving akara in my face with the right.

12:36 PM

After eating breakfast I sat down in front of the TV, till like 11. From 11 till 12:30 I helped my cousins pack their bags into the car. It's my cousin’s birthday and they're going out to celebrate - which is pleasing to my soul because it means I can just rest. I also helped my Uncle clean his shoes, a pretty important task for me because he never bothers me with anything - so any time he asks I give it all my attention. I scrubbed that shoe for thirty good minutes and every time I felt I was done, my brain said I wasn’t and that if I didn’t do it properly, he’d be disappointed.

1:04 PM

Now, I'm just sitting down in the living room, playing Alto’s Adventure, an endless snowboarding game. I started playing it because I'm really trying to break free - I have what you might say is an addictive personality, so I am trying to switch addictions from social media to a really calm and soothing game instead. I cannot say that it’s working for my main goal, because I’m still always online, but it’s still great because it’s such a fantastic game.

Anyways, I just finished a really difficult level and I am really proud of myself. I am going to switch to “Zen Mode” for a bit. No challenges or opponents, just endless snow-capped mountains and beautiful music. “Headphones are Recommended”, the game tells me. Don’t mind if I do.

1:34 PM

I took a break from my game, opened Twitter, and someone shared a link to an article about Benzema’s court case. I clicked on it and found out it was one of those articles behind a paywall. I just spent the last 20 minutes trying to figure out a way to beat paywalls once and for all because I am broke. Don’t get me wrong, I support free media and all but I just can’t pay an incredible amount of money (to me) just to read one article, seems a bit excessive yunno? Anywaysss, I went on YouTube and I just want to say shout out to those Indian guys, they're the best. I found a way to beat paywalls and I have read the article.

Turns out Benzema, one of my favourite footballers, is an asshole, but he is not as bad an asshole as I thought. We're all assholes anyway, doesn't matter.

2:34 PM

I have spent the last hour editing and posting something on my medium page. It’s my first post in a while and I am a bit nervous. I always hate my stories, but my fans think I am the best thing since sliced bread. I try to believe them, but I keep second-guessing myself and feeling like an impostor. I also watched a video on Twitter of Gunna singing really beautifully? Someone called him “Gunna J Blige” and I thought it was really funny. It's about to rain, so I think I might take a very well deserved nap, but just after I finish a mission on Alto’s adventure.

4:54 PM

So, I said I was going to sleep, but I haven't closed my eyes one bit. Instead, I impulsively called 2 of my friends and spent time on the phone with them. I ended the first call so I could sleep, then called the second one. I had to cut friend number two off because her network was bad and it was interrupting the flow. Also, (maybe) more importantly, my phone’s battery was very low. BUT, just as I was about to put off my phone and lie down, Nepa brought light, an obvious sign that God is behind my decision to just keep pressing away. In between all of this, I had a huge bowl of golden morn in between, and a bottle of water.

I'm now watching football on TV.

5:02 PM

They just took the light, I'm so upset. I'm going to nap for real this time - my phone battery is low anyways.

5:05 PM

I just got upstairs and they brought the light back, ugh. I hate this country. I am just going to lie down regardless.

5:08 PM

I just remembered I didn’t put the TV’s off, so I am going back downstairs, don’t judge me.

6:39 PM

I have been watching football while using Snapchat, TikTok, and co. for the past hour. Or is it 2? I don’t know, time is a social construct plis.

6:42 PM

I got a text from an agent of a shuttle service that I use to get to work twice a week, their app is having some downtime so they need to book the trips for me from the backend. I asked how early they leave in the mornings and they said 5:50 AM. Lmao, abeg - I said that’s too early, so they should just book me trips for the evening. She told me to pay a while ago but I don’t have money in my account to transfer yet so I'm just chilling, will probably pay tomorrow.

6:50 PM

Um, did I mention I posted a new poem on my Medium page? Must have been around 2:30 or so. Anyways, I did that. Another time for people to say they relate to the trauma that is my life.

9:36 PM

Watching football right now. The combined age of AC Milan’s strikers is 75 and that’s actually sick. They need to invest in the youth, please. Ibrahimovic should retire abeg, like - it’s enough. My friend sent me money to book the trip (shout out to Nneka, the best babe ever)and I should have bod it a while ago but I have been postponing - you know how it is.

I had dinner like an hour ago, I think. Yeah, let's say 8, or some minutes to 8 maybe. Anyhow, I’ll book that ride tomorrow.

The game is over. AC Milan 4-2 Bologna.

9:42 PM

I'm going to bed now, I am actually pretty exhausted. No, like for real, I need sleep. There are a couple of things I didn’t mention earlier:

  • I googled the Google pixel 6 today. I saw a tweet about it so I became curious. It turned into a thirty-minute study on the differences between Google and Samsung phones. I don’t even remember one.

  • I also posted a picture on Snapchat and captioned it “catfish” because I used a filter so people can’t see how bad my face is breaking out.

  • I practised French on Duolingo. My streak is now at 513. Fantastique.

Okay, so this is it. The end of a day in the life of an ADHD man. It’s been a pleasure being with you through this journey. We’ll be back next week, same time, same station. To our viewers and listeners all around the world, thank you, and goodnight.

11: 24 PM

I have been playing Alto’s adventure for a while and I got hungry. I am going to the kitchen to get a bottle of water and biscuits and after that, I’ll put off my phone and sleep. Okay, goodnight.

1:03 AM

I just remembered the Slack message I was going to reply. For God’s sake.

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