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  • Writer's pictureAmy

Getting Clean and Getting Dirty

Updated: Feb 7, 2023



The struggle is real.


I've been on Vyvanse for about 10 years. And. I. Love. It. It gave me this incredible energy, kept me motivated, focused, and from feeling hungry. Not to mention the diuretic properties (which my doctor did not seem to think were real). Oh, those eliminations were no joke. I felt thinner, more energized, and got stuff done. It was like magic and I loved it.


My insides did not.


Because I was never hungry throughout the day, when I crashed at night I binged. My GI tract was whack, and I had no idea what my true system was like these days. I also felt hypocritical promoting this 'healthy holistic lifestyle' while I was still taking a serious pharmaceutical. To be honest, I felt I needed it as a constantly overwhelmed teacher. I found it near impossible to stay on top of all of my students, lesson plans, and my own children's needs. It made me feel like I was insane. I couldn't keep anything in my mind long, and I was dropping the ball.


But now that that chapter is closed (and thanks to yet another documentary about the scary truth of 'focus pills') I decided to get clean.


The ADHD Farmer


It's been about 2 weeks since I stopped taking Vyvanse. At first I was really concerned about how I thought I would feel (I was taking a hefty dose by this point) and more worried about how I would function. Would I just space out for hours? Would I forget to get Gabe from practice? All this unstructured time working from home was the opposite of what was typically conducive, and I need a schedule.


And it was fine - at first.


I think I was so worried about how dysfunctional I would be that I did a great job managing the first week. Write a plan mapping out each part of the day. Each day has a different task. Sticky notes. White boards. Google Calendar. Stick to list. Boom.

I was cautiously optimistic.


Then the garden happened.



Over the winter I spent time hunkering down in hibernation planning for the amazing springtime when everything will BLOOM and the sun will be out and everything will be luscious and growing and wonderful.


I planned my 2 garden beds.


Then I doubled their sizes.


Forgetting that I will no longer have summers 'off' to work these gardens, my excitement overtook my rational side (again).





Rock Gardening

So, I'm pretty sure we're on top of a mountain. If you've never seen our dirt (which I love), it's a lot of very interesting and pretty rocks, and clay, and I'm not really sure what else. It's far from good, and a lot of work.


I don't use pesticides or herbicides. I manually weed and pick off bugs each day. Yes, this is a waste of personal time and resources, but in the past I had resources to spare in the summer. Not so much these days.








Manic Gardening at the Barefoot Medicine Farm looks like:



-Half-assed tilling with a herniated disk.

-Getting too excited to put things in the ground, and forgetting what went where.

-Making random rock/weed/grass piles to use as a path in yet ANOTHER project.

-Dogs eating manure. Chase down dogs. Put dogs inside. Forget what I was doing. Do dishes? Do dishes. Why are there seeds in my back pocket? OH! Put seeds in dirt!

-Put seeds in dirt. Crap. Pole beans have no poles. OH yeah! Make stick teepees from woods for beans. Hm. Don't remember how to do this. Look it up online. Go inside. Why am I in here? Dogs chewed up my shoes...make lunch...



So, is my drugless system working? Not so much. Sometimes yes. But every day right now is different with real life parental obligations, doctor appointments, and trying to start a new business from scratch. The good news is at least I have resources to fall back on through my study of herbs that can help me regain some focus. Meditation will help, too. However, the truth is nothing will be like Vyvanse, and I'm comfortable with this. Is my garden a disaster? Probably yes. Would I want anyone seeing it- probably not.


But there is an undeniable love that I planted in that dirt along with those seeds, each one tucked in with the same adoration and appreciation I had tucking in my babies. And they will grow, my hardy little plants, in their hard-packed beds. So I guess in this season, my plant babies and I are growing together, both clean and dirty.



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Kay Koenig
Kay Koenig
May 19, 2021

Nicely done. Relatable. Human. We should all be so lucky. The Good Earth.

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