#October7th2023 will be recorded in history as the single most tragic day for the Jewish people since the #Holocaust. The enormity of this tragedy is still unknown. Our boys (including my oldest son) are bravely battling in #Gaza. #Antisemitism is rearing its ugly head across the globe once again, causing #Jews everywhere to fear for their physical safety.
The predictable world we once knew has vanished.
The morning after the #massacre, as news of the sheer loss of life began to sink in, we all felt hopeless. How does a nation respond to a tragedy of this magnitude? Could we send our boys off to war with such a vicious enemy?
One group emerged with force from the darkness. They charged forward. There was a job to do, a horrific job, and someone had to do it. Over 1,200 of our brothers and sisters had been murdered, young and old. They had been mutilated, their bodies often missing limbs, sights nearly impossible to withstand. #PTSD was a likely outcome for anyone tasked with the job of gathering these precious bodies from fields, destroyed homes, and charred cars. Only one group of people could complete this task. These were fearless people, ones who act and then think, often labeled impulsive.
charged with taking all the bodies from the rave and the ravaged communities and ensuring they were brought to a quick and respectful Jewish burial.
I merited to meet these fearless, impulsive people at the second stage of their mission. My local Chevra Kadish (burial society) was recruited to help with the final preparation of our beloved people for burial. The work was stressful and difficult, we worked into the night, giving one another strength and encouragement.
During short breaks in our intensive work, we talked about our “old” lives, before the war, which felt so long ago.
I mentioned that I worked with people with #ADHD. Many faces in the room lit up.
“I was diagnosed with ADHD!”, “I have ADHD!”, “Couldn’t sit for a minute in school” they declared.
“I know,” I said, “And that’s what makes all of you so awesome!”
ADHD is characterized as a #neuro-developmental“disorder”. The "sufferer" acts before thinking, is frequently #tactless, comes up with uncanny ideas but doesn’t follow through, and is often energized by living on the edge. These characteristics do not jive well with modern expectations of children or adults. We are expected to be predictable, follow rules, and be responsible members of society, desirable traits indeed.
But sometimes the world becomes unpredictable, rules stop applying and responsibility is no longer an asset. “Good” behavior, the kind we learned was of utmost importance in school, leaves us with no resources in this new world.
When the predictable world vanishes, there is one group that remains unfazed. The awesome group! They act and then ask, they volunteer and then process, they do and then check the instructions.
IS ADHD a disorder? After spending a very intense, confusing, and tragic time shoulder to shoulder with my ADHD brothers and sisters, all I can say is Thank God for their healthy, adaptive skills. Their energy and out-of-the-box thinking carried the day. Their passion and fearlessness brought respect and salvation to our nation. I am humbled by their dedication to our people.
Perhaps we should stop trying to fix ADHD and understand that it is a different and very necessary skill set that requires nurturing and direction and that one day amazing people with these skills may just save the day.