Gina Marie Rodriguez: Giftedness, eccentricity & the science of hair

Jul 17, 2023


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 Episode 146 with Gina Marie Rodriguez.

“I feel like I’m more ADHD than ever before because I’m just now learning how to fully be myself.”

Gina is a curly hair specialist, hairstylist, and educator in Northern California.

Like many of my guests, Gina was always moving from one idea to the next with lightning speed and was somehow able to hold everything together and appear successful after having children and experiencing extreme bouts of depression and anxiety and the soul crushing feeling of being unable to manage it all.

After beginning the Autism diagnosis process with her younger daughter, she started to question her own experiences and began to unravel a whole hidden interconnected web of neurodivergence in her own family.

Gina talks about her medication journey and the internal experience of what she calls “ADHD episodes.” We talk about the pressures of giftedness and never feeling like we’ve reached our potential. We also talk about unmasking after a diagnosis and embracing our eccentricities, and we talk about the science of hair and how being a hairstylist can actually be a great fit for someone with ADHD.



Instagram: @gina_thecultivatedcurl


Cultivated Curl Academy

Resources mentioned:

The Big Picture documentary

The Disruptors documentary

Thinking in Pictures by Temple Grandin

Your Brain’s Not Broken by Tamara Rosier

ADHD 2.0 by Halloween & Ratey




Katy Weber (she/her) (00:00.578)
Gina, thank you so much for being here today. It's just, can I, do you prefer Gina or Gina Marie? Okay, awesome.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (00:01.838)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (00:06.594)
You know what? Either way. Some people call me Gina Marie and I'm like, aw. And then some, most people just call me Gina. I'm just like, oh, your family? Oh, no, I'm kidding.

Katy Weber (she/her) (00:14.03)
Alright, as long as it's not like... I was gonna say, as long as it doesn't remind you of like your mother being mad at you, right? That's what I always feel like.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (00:21.858)
No, I've tried to take that back, you know, like I've tried to own that. Like this is my name and I feel good about it.

Katy Weber (she/her) (00:28.238)
I love it. All right. Well, thank you so much for joining me. Let's get started. I want to hear about your diagnosis journey. How long ago were you diagnosed? This, this mostly started through your children, right? As, as many middle aged women experience. So why don't you walk us through?

Gina Marie Rodriguez (00:44.294)
as many of us do. Yeah, I will try and stay succinct, but we all know how that can be. So I am, how old am I? I'm 45, yeah. First of all, I always said I would never be one of those women that like forgot how old she was, but. I'm 45.

I was like, that's ridiculous. Everybody knows how old they are. But now I'm like, wait, hold on, wait, 77. I can't do the math. So I remember when I was, yeah. So I'm 45 now and I just, yes, I just got my diagnosis. Like.

Katy Weber (she/her) (01:10.32)
Uh... Heheheheh...

Gina Marie Rodriguez (01:18.526)
in January. Currently it is June. So like six months ago, less than around. Like it's so brand new for me. But it was like on my mind only because of social media, right? Just that whole thing that we all kind of do that I only I only know because I've been listening to your podcast. Like, oh, this is normal. This is like what we do.

We like start liking these, you know, reels and TikToks and things. And by the way, I'm not on TikTok because I think that would be like really detrimental. I would never do anything else. So I'm only on Instagram. But like people, you know, repost TikToks on Instagram all the time. But, you know, there are like so many ADHD things and stuff. And I was like, well, I'm like, everybody does that, you know, like, oh, that's like totally normal. And.

ha ha, this is like, I guess also an ADHD thing. And then like more and more, cause the algorithm knows you better than you do. And all of a sudden everything is just like ADHD. And I was just thinking, I was like, that's, you know, I don't know. Maybe this is like some weird like, you know, Gen Z thing, like everybody has ADHD and it's just like this new thing, you know, but it's not real, right? It's not real. So my...

children currently 11 and 6, kind of at the time that all of this really began, we'd been having some struggles with my younger daughter. I'm like fidgeting and touching my fingers as I'm talking because I can't otherwise, right? So we were having some troubles with my younger daughter, just like so, so big emotions, giant tantrums, not even tantrums, we thought they were tantrums, but they were meltdowns and...

Katy Weber (she/her) (02:46.784)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (02:59.73)
I felt like I couldn't connect with her like I could my older daughter. And she started doing these things, you know, she was lining up toys, all categorizing things and always putting things in lines and building these intricate towers and stuff and walking around on her tiptoes and, you know, some of the things that.

anecdotally like, oh, that might be autism and stuff. And so we were just like, oh, I mean, it wouldn't hurt to like check it out. And so we go through and it takes like this long, unbelievably long process to even get an appointment. And the first appointment is just, you know, kind of like a screening appointment before they even allow you to have an appointment. So we finally get the appointment. And as I'm going through all the questionnaires, I'm just like, huh? I mean, some of these things are definitely not her.

But I was like, if I was answering these questions for my other daughter, what would that look like? And one of the questionnaires in particular, at the bottom of the paperwork, it's very obvious that somebody who's not the trained doctor is doing the initial write-ups of these papers just before they go to the doctor. So on the bottom, there was a scoring. Like if you have 50 to 60, then you're high level of.

Katy Weber (she/her) (03:51.095)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (04:15.27)
suspected autism or if you have like, you know, mostly green ones, it's like ADHD or whatever the qualifications were on the bottom. It was like a cheat sheet for someone who was adding up and tallying the score. And so I was like, oh, well, let me just think, you know, just kind of in my head. And more and more I was seeing the ADHD thing. And I was like, oh my gosh, I wonder if my older daughter has ADHD. And I was like, hold up.

Katy Weber (she/her) (04:26.679)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (04:41.822)
I mean, I have been liking all those TikToks. I have been liking all those Instagrams. And like my older daughter is so much like me that it was just kind of scary, you know, and for anybody out there who's kind of in this, like, I wonder process, like it can be kind of a scary thing because it's so unknown and you never thought of it in your whole life. And it's like, wait, I don't.

Katy Weber (she/her) (04:44.034)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (05:06.442)
Everything I know about myself might just have changed. I don't know. And so of course the process to get my older daughter, by the way, my younger daughter was diagnosed with autism. Level one, which would have been called Asperger's before, but you know, it's just all autism now. And I was like, well, I mean, I'm gifted.

because I was a gifted student when I was younger. And so I just start going down these rabbit holes like we do and just searching everywhere on the internet for all these things. And I keep finding giftedness is on a spectrum of its own. And I'm like, wait, what? What? And you never grow out of giftedness. I was like, wait, this is something that's like to do with your brain. It's not just you did well in school. Hold on. Hold on a second. You know? And...

Anyways, I'm starting to ramble. So my older daughter took forever to get, you know, in the queue, and during that process I was like, how, what's going on here? How am I gonna even get, like, assessed? Like, this is so difficult from everything I'm seeing online, and of course there's the...

ADHD online company and there's the done first company. There's these companies that of course the algorithm kept feeding me. And so I thought I have insurance and I know that like therapists and all this stuff is all covered. Yet at the time I'm getting way ahead of myself. I was experiencing a crisis myself while all of this was happening with my kids. And so I felt like my entire life was like.

Katy Weber (she/her) (06:25.751)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (06:45.654)
just completely crumbling around me. And it was the pandemic. Like, it's like all of this at the same time. And I was like, is it the pandemic? Is it this? Is it that? But regardless, I couldn't like let my children, you know, fail and that even made things worse for me. So I was just having like the hardest, hardest time keeping my head above water and even going in and trying to look.

to ask the doctor if I had anything that might be, I couldn't do it. I just couldn't bring myself. I couldn't do it. It was too hard, which I look back now and I'm like, obviously. But it was just so overwhelming. It was too hard. I couldn't. And I thought the easier thing to do would just to be one of these online things. And I'll pay for that service just to see.

Katy Weber (she/her) (07:28.194)
Ha ha!

Gina Marie Rodriguez (07:44.118)
get it to involve with my medical insurance. And I told my husband, he's like, yeah, I guess, whatever. He doesn't really get in my way. So that's cool. So I did the done first. I talked to the people.

They were like, yeah, for sure. It could be bipolar. And I was like, oh my gosh, that threw me for a loop. But if we put you on ad amoxetine, because we can't prescribe any stimulants. And I was like, oh, okay, I don't even know. I don't even know what we're talking about right now. So they're like, if we do this, then...

Katy Weber (she/her) (08:14.574)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (08:19.19)
just we have to watch out because if it's bipolar, you know, it could make you go manic. So then I was terrified that I was like, oh, what if I am bipolar? I'm gonna go manic. So I start the medicine and nothing's changing. Nothing's changing. And they're like, you know, it takes up to two months. Nothing's going on. And all of a sudden.

Like I had stopped doing all my hobbies. I felt like I couldn't do my, this is up before this moment, I couldn't do my job. I was no longer supporting my online students. I could not do anything more. All of a sudden, I started picking up a little hobby. I was like, oh, everybody was doing sourdough. I think I'm gonna.

start doing sourdough. I think I could do that. I started doing that and then I was like, oh, I wonder if I could update this program and I could make a new program for such and such or whatever. And just slowly like ideas and creativity started flowing back to me. And I was telling my best friend, I just, I don't think it's working. And she's like, Gina, you're doing hobbies again, you're doing things. And I'm like, oh yeah. And also I just wanted to mention this. I know it's

I didn't know binge eating was a thing. I didn't know that was an ADHD thing. And I also didn't realize I'd struggled with this, like, for as long as I can remember. When things were hard, when I was overwhelmed, whatever was going on, I would like...

just keep stuffing chocolate and chips and just like whatever. And sometimes I could, you know, it wasn't so terrible, but like I would get into these moments that I was like, oh, I need something, I need something. And I had gotten into that place and I had put on like 30 pounds in like not a very long amount of time. And so I wasn't doing that anymore. I wasn't standing in front of the pantry I noticed. And I was like starting to think of making

healthy decisions like I would normally think of as myself. First of all, I don't eat meat, I don't eat dairy. I've been quote unquote, I don't like the term vegan, but I've been essentially vegan for like 13 years.

And there's a way to be a trash can vegan. Like there is for sure. And which is what I had been doing. But I was like, oh, you know, I can eat some quinoa or I can eat a baked potato and you know, and normally when I'm well, food is not that important of a thing to me. It's just, it's fuel. But when I'm not well, it's snack, snack. Stop. So that's what the atomoxetine had done for me and I didn't realize it.

And so that was kind of amazing. And then all of a sudden I had capacity to talk to doctors, to, you know, um, and the one thing about at the time that service did not give you a diagnosis that you could take anywhere. It was just within the service. So there was this other ADHD online and you guys have talked about that would give you a diagnosis you could take to your psychiatrist. So I went through that process, which by the way, was while I was still not fully medicated yet, it hadn't been all the way. So it took me a month.

to finish that questionnaire, which is like so intense. It just took so long for me to keep coming back and answering and I was like, oh, this is overwhelming, I can't do it. And finally I finished it. And then like three weeks later, they gave me the, yep, inattentive ADHD. And I was like, wow, like this is a real thing, which I still question, right? Like, did I fool them? Like you guys always say, like, did I, did I just answer the questions correctly? And you know, do I actually have ADHD? And...

Katy Weber (she/her) (11:55.028)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (11:57.742)
which yes, absolutely I do. It's like, no question, truly, truly. But then I was able to take it to a psychiatrist and she's been working with me and yeah, I will have to say that we were gonna move me to a stimulant. We're gonna move me to Vyavance. And it's been such a difficult process with like.

Katy Weber (she/her) (12:00.142)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (12:22.346)
shortages of a lot of medications, insurance not necessarily wanted to pay for it, needing prior authorizations. It's been like so long. So in that process of trying to get on the stimulant, we are supposed to be like tapering off of the non-stimulant and tapering on to the stimulant. And they had written the prescription, I couldn't get the medication. And then, you know, the overwhelm and like not doing the things we're supposed to do made it so that I was without medication for like a little over two weeks.

And I felt life again without medication. And I recognized what an ADHD episode felt like because I hadn't had a necessarily an episode is what I call it in a long time. And it felt very familiar. And I was like, oh, this is how I've felt many times in my life, but I didn't know.

what that was, it was just like normal. But now that I've had this little break from it, and now that I'm back to experiencing that again, it's just this feeling of just like, I want to do something, I want to do something, I can't, I don't know what to do, I don't know what to do. And my older daughter, I think she's got a combined type ADHD, she was finally diagnosed. She would do this thing, we had a trampling in our living room because she couldn't sit still.

You know, these are these are classic things. She would actually run in circles in circles. And like it's Joe, people say like, oh, they're running in circles. Like she would actually run in circles, run around and she could not keep herself contained. And that's how I felt like I felt like I kind of want to run around in a circle right now. Like I just I just want to just run around and do these like ridiculous.

Katy Weber (she/her) (13:49.314)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (14:13.762)
like jump around back and forth, like do these weird things for no, who knows what? And I also kind of want to punch somebody in the face, but I know I shouldn't punch anybody in the face, but I kind of want to. And it was like this like, ah, and it was almost like painful and frustrating. And it made me realize this is what my older daughter has been doing for a long time. And especially, you know, children, and I remember feeling this way, like,

I'm going to pick on somebody. I'm going to go start a fight. I'm going to, you know, and it's all that seeking dopamine. And when I got back on the medication, it took me like three days for that to like quiet down. And I was like, oh, yes, yes. So I think we've closed the loop. That's how I.

Katy Weber (she/her) (14:58.126)
I'm sorry.

Katy Weber (she/her) (15:07.33)
I'm just so fascinated. I'm like, I could listen to this whole thread for hours because there's, oh God, there was so much in there. Gosh, what do I want to go back to? I feel like, you know, I'm curious with your youngest, when you were talking about the tantrums, it reminded me of, was she late in terms of verbal stuff? No.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (15:23.693)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (15:31.648)
Uh-uh. No, neither of mine were.

Katy Weber (she/her) (15:34.042)
Cause one of the things that I've been thinking about with my son who, um, was very, sounded very similar, had a lot of tantrums because he wasn't verbal. Um, and we actually also, we had him tested for autism when he was a kid because he was very similar to like you were saying about the lining things up and he played independently for hours, which my older dog, my daughter, like never did that. She was always needed to be right next to me. And she was always like making me play dolls with her and all of that horrible stuff. And so

Gina Marie Rodriguez (15:50.219)

Oh my gosh, yes.

No. Ugh. Oh my God, it's so horrible.

Katy Weber (she/her) (16:02.97)
Like, right. And he would play for hours by himself. And I was like, I don't want to interrupt him, but I also don't know what to do right. But one of the things I always thought about with the tantrums was just this idea that like he was incapable of expressing his art or articulating his emotions. And it's like, you, you notice, because that's a lot of the things that I experienced even as an adult, right? Like how difficult it is sometimes.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (16:10.216)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (16:21.596)

Katy Weber (she/her) (16:28.126)
to explain, which you actually just beautifully did, some of those episodes, some of those feelings in us, you know, that like jumping out of our skin feeling, or, you know, the, I don't even know what do you call it. It's like when you just get overtaken by all the things, right? And that's something that I've had a really hard time articulating to my family. I feel like I'm better now that I've had this diagnosis and I really understand what's going on, but like it happened the other day to my son.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (16:32.111)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (16:36.959)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (16:45.836)

Katy Weber (she/her) (16:57.898)
We were just playing tennis and he was, you know, he wasn't doing well. He was like kept hitting the net with his serve and he was getting really, really frustrated. And, um, and then we left early and he was like, you know, started tearing up and I was like, buddy, what's wrong? And he was like, I'm just, I'm so mad at my school and I got a sunburn and he just like listed all these things that had nothing to do with tennis. Right. And I just, you know, that feeling where it's like all of a sudden everything that is wrong with the world.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (17:17.323)
Oh, yes. Yes.

Katy Weber (she/her) (17:27.598)
comes bubbling up. And I just, it was that's like, I felt like that was such an ADHD moment, right? Where you're just like, what isn't wrong right now? And I just, like my heart went out to him because I was like, I get it, right? Like I get it when, you know, one wrong move, suddenly it's like everything in the world is coming back and it's just all the things all at once.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (17:29.384)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (17:33.675)


Gina Marie Rodriguez (17:54.046)
Yeah, and that's kind of that rejection thing too, even though it's not necessarily directed right at you, but like everything is going wrong. So like nothing's ever gonna go right for me. Like everything's terrible. It all sucks.

Katy Weber (she/her) (18:05.214)
Right? Yeah. And just sort of like imagining how that must feel at a very young age when you can't really articulate that you can't communicate that. And so I think it's why younger neurodivergent kids tend to have those tantrums, right? Or tend to have pathological demand avoidance, which is a term I hate, but you know, a lot of that, I know, right? I mean, I think a lot of us have it, but I don't think it's pathological, but you know, just a lot of that kind of the, um,

Gina Marie Rodriguez (18:10.251)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (18:13.692)
Oh my gosh.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (18:19.054)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (18:22.866)
I hate it too, but I see it. I know what it is. It is.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (18:29.591)
Ha ha.

Katy Weber (she/her) (18:32.118)
the pushback, right? That anger that seems to come out of nowhere. Oh, and I also really liked the fact that you had talked about it taking two months because I think that's something a lot of us give up on, which is like, oh my goodness, this isn't the miracle drug I thought it was gonna be after a week, so peace out and we dip out. And so, and I certainly did that. I've had some regrets about my experiences with just dismissing medication because it...

Gina Marie Rodriguez (18:35.602)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (18:52.8)

Katy Weber (she/her) (19:01.074)
wasn't, you know, didn't feel right or something. And kind of wishing I could go back and do that. So I'm glad you shared that because I don't feel like we've talked a lot about Adam Oxley in this, on this podcast.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (19:03.455)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (19:10.726)
Yeah, I definitely wanted to speak about it because it is really a recent thing that I'm dealing with and we're actually, my daughter just got prescribed adimoxetine as well, which is only available in a pill right now and the absolute just like that whole demand avoidance thing, I'm not going to say pathological, but she's just like, no, I'm not going to do that. I'm not taking a pill. In fact, I'm not going to take any medication. And I'm like, oh, here we go.

Katy Weber (she/her) (19:22.19)

Katy Weber (she/her) (19:25.956)
When she's 11, that's tough. Yeah.

Katy Weber (she/her) (19:33.958)

Katy Weber (she/her) (19:39.607)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (19:40.478)
Here goes 11, and I'm like, breathe, Gina, breathe, breathe. Breathe. Like, this is gonna take us like three weeks for her to find, I know the drill. It's gonna take us like three weeks. We're gonna talk about it. She's gonna like stomp her feet. She's probably gonna like kick a wall or something. Like, I don't know, something's gonna break normal. And like, this is all normal stuff. I'm used to it. And then all of a sudden she's gonna go, fine, I'll try it. And then she'd be like, that wasn't that bad.

And I'll go, okay, well good, that's great. I'm glad. It's such a normal thing. Just wait her out. I'm always telling my husband, he's always like, oh my God, and I'm like, just wait her out, seriously. She's gonna say no, she's gonna stomp her feet, and she's gonna act like she's gonna bite you, but it's actually gonna...

Katy Weber (she/her) (20:09.571)
I'm gonna go.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (20:26.478)
it'll work it out. It's gonna be to breathe. Like just walk around the house, go take a walk. I don't know. You'll be fine. You know, but um, but no, I actually haven't heard a lot of people talk and I'm not saying I'm like this huge fan. I don't work for, you know, Stratera or the companies that make out at Acoustic or whatever else. But I think it's overlooked and I think that like, you know, first line treatment for ADHD is, you know, a stimulant and during this like

Katy Weber (she/her) (20:31.47)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (20:52.726)
hyper focus of learning everything I can possibly learn about ADHD and you know all about neurodiversities and all the different things is The realization that when I first started taking it I expected it to work right away for one I expected it to immediately cure my ADHD that was like, oh, this is gonna take it away and now I'll be normal fantastic and the you know the long the long road to realizing Which honestly it's been what?

six months so it's not really a long road. Yeah, but it feels it feels like yes it does it does it feels like oh my god this is taking me far anyway so um so where was I what was I saying? Like get back on track? Come on come back come back come back come back um okay yes here we are so the idea that there is something wrong with our brain right and the majority of people who are treating um

Katy Weber (she/her) (21:20.779)
Yeah, but that's like 10 years in ADHD years.

Katy Weber (she/her) (21:33.209)
I'm talking about a box of these.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (21:47.134)
ADHD and treating autism and treating dyslexia, treating anything, whatever else, are coming from a neurotypical viewpoint. And so this is wrong and our world is not built for us, which has been talked about in this podcast and I think a lot of us are starting to realize that there's nothing wrong with us, right? Like, let's just stop there for a second. There is nothing wrong.

nothing wrong. And you know, for the past two weeks, I haven't been listening to podcasts, even though I've been like binging it at 1.7 speed, you know, just as fast as I possibly can. But because people talk too slow. Oh, God. Oh, I think it's just too. Hurry up, get to the point. So, um,

Katy Weber (she/her) (22:16.558)
I'm sorry.

Katy Weber (she/her) (22:24.505)
I know, right? I feel like when people talk to me in real life, they must be like, why do you talk so slow?

Gina Marie Rodriguez (22:32.818)
Oh, right. Because we're all listening to it on high speed. But just the idea that we're not right and that there's a disorder, that there's a problem, but we're not. This world wasn't made for us and the people who got to the places. I love, again, I wasn't listening to your podcast for the last two weeks because I've been listening to...

What's that one? Not broken. Your brain is not broken. And oh my God, there's yes, there's just so much. And that was of course on, you know, I listened to the last podcast I listened to was when you were interviewing that author and I was like, I must listen to this right now. Immediately, immediately switch over to that one. Okay, cool. So I've been listening to that and it's just so good. And of course, I listened to ADHD 2.0 and I all these different things. Right.

Katy Weber (she/her) (23:05.586)
Oh, the audio book? Oh, it's so good, right?

Katy Weber (she/her) (23:15.691)
Oh yeah, she's fantastic.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (23:29.914)
What I haven't said on this podcast yet, that's like in my mind, of course, because in my head I've said everything already, but my older daughter also got diagnosed about the exact same time with dyslexia. And we'd been struggling for years with like, she is so, oh my God, she is so smart. She is, she is intelligent beyond like, like measure, you know, like she was, she was not even three years old. And

we're driving and she says, hey daddy, hum like this. And she hums this song for him to, you know, this tune thing for him to hum. And then she says, mama now do this at the same time. And I do that. And then she does this little scat over the top of it. She's like, she put that together in her brain. And we were just like, oh, my God. You know, we're we were very musical and very theatrical. It's like in my family, which is like, oh.

This is so good. Oh, the Rodriguez is strong in her. Oh. And you know, but she was so, so smart. And why was reading so hard? Why was writing a sentence so hard? And like, I remember during the pandemic, I was homeschooling her.

and she's supposed to write a paragraph, and she just rips her book apart and throws it down the stairs. She wasn't having any of it. And it was like, I just don't understand. We took her to a tutoring center. You know, we paid so much money for the tutoring, and they're like, you know, and she's a terrible speller. Oh my gosh, what are we supposed to do? Like, she can't spell any words. It's all like kindergarten spelling, and here she's in third grade. And they're like, oh, you know, spelling isn't important anymore. We're gonna move beyond that.

And I'm like, oh, OK, I guess I don't have to worry about that. And they're like, you know, and in the future, everybody's going to be using text to speech anyway. So, you know, just have her write text to speech. And I was like, oh, OK, sure. That doesn't seem like it's solving the problem that we're having. But all right, we'll do that. You know, and then after that program was done, I felt like. She still wasn't like progressing at all.

She wasn't better. And so we take her, I'm like, Oh, let's go over to like another, like this, another tutoring center and all these assessments that they're assessing her. We're saying that she was down, she was missing key, phonological and orthographic and all these different things from like that she should have had from first grade and. You know, come to find out after, you know, all of this stuff, when she went to, we finally got into that, um, ADHD.

assessment, the psychologist there was like, you know, I'm actually thinking this might be a learning disability, which kind of turned me on to like, oh, I hadn't even considered. And so we go and have her tested for that. And we find out she's dyslexic. And I'm like, this is everything, you know? And once again, it's a brain programming, right? So the first, the people that are treating dyslexia and whenever you're, there's a

There's an ad that I've been targeted for this school, which just drives me nuts. It's a school for dyslexic students. And it says, see if your child is at risk for dyslexia. And I'm like, oh, you guys have this so wrong. You're a dyslexia school like your school risk, risk.

Katy Weber (she/her) (26:44.855)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (26:51.166)
Either you are or you're not. There's no, you don't develop it. You know, like she might become dyslexic. Let's just beware, beware. We can solve that. We can avert that. Like, you know, if we go here, they won't be dyslexic. No, that is not the case at all. And so we're in California. Our governor currently, Newsom, is dyslexic as well. I didn't know that. Just of course, you know, you go down the rabbit hole and you find out everything. Like who's all dyslexic? Richard Branson, like all these different people. I'm like, oh my gosh. I've watched, what is that?

Katy Weber (she/her) (26:54.798)
I'm out.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (27:22.016)
Oh my gosh... Um...

The picture I'm seeing is like times up, but that's not what it is. The big picture, yes, there we go, here it is. I'm like, hold on, I had to follow the pathways in my brain that are all crooked. And I'm like, hold on, I see the picture, there's a clock. Then there's, I had to make all these different little leaps to find the information, which is stored there. I just, it takes a minute. So it's, the-

Katy Weber (she/her) (27:31.566)
to the documentary? Oh, okay.

Yeah. Ha ha

Gina Marie Rodriguez (27:49.911)
The big picture or the bigger picture, dyslexia, about dyslexia. You search that, you can find it. Phenomenal, phenomenal about that. And then I also watched, what is that, The Disruptors? That's another, oh, phenomenal.

Katy Weber (she/her) (28:02.69)
I was just gonna ask if you had seen that. I know I recommend it to anybody with kids basically. I mean I think it's just I think it's a phenomenal documentary for anybody with ADHD but it just I felt so it just I feel like it asked all the questions that we've been asking. Yeah.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (28:08.514)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (28:12.97)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (28:17.706)
I've basically seen every documentary about any kind of neuro like difference, you know, there's another one of life and pictures for autism, like, it's just phenomenal, right? And oh gosh, sorry, so it's just gonna be this huge like, no, it is great. It is actually I've actually used those notes many, many times. But um.

Katy Weber (she/her) (28:28.434)
have a nice list of extra links in the show notes. Okay, cool. No, I love resources. Great, right?

Gina Marie Rodriguez (28:44.074)
I'm on this huge tangent right now. Just like that our brains are not broken. I love that title. That there is nothing wrong with us. So if the first line treatment is a stimulant, this is supposed to help us focus. A lot of people.

will say I've heard and read online that kind of like numbs you a little bit, right? And like some people lose a little bit of their creativity or whatever else. Or the fact that it's, you know, it takes a little bit to start working and then it, you know, it works for a while, then it peaks and then you have a crash afterwards. And I'm like, but there's nothing wrong with us. It's because our life, our society, our world that we have built and we are living in is boring.

It's absolutely boring. You have to wake up. You got to brush your teeth. You got to wash your face. You got to feed the dog. You got like all the things you have to do are not exciting. There's no payoff. There's nothing. What are we looking forward to? And then we end up with this existential crisis, right? And then we have depression and anxiety and all these different things because just the world is not built for us. So let's go ahead and take a pill so that we can like kind of.

be and fit ourselves so that we can focus and do the job we have to do. And so my feeling with and again, I'm not being paid whatsoever. I'm not a spokesperson. But my feeling with Adamoxetine is it just takes it down a little bit. But then there's no crash. There's no work up. Once you get into that six to six to eight weeks, it's just like it's a constant state, it doesn't stop. And so you're able to do that. Just that little assist.

And I was watching this, I'm not gonna be able to give you the name, I apologize, but you know how you end up like down a rabbit hole and all of a sudden you're watching a webinar that was made for physicians and pharmacologists in Canada?

Katy Weber (she/her) (30:36.634)
As one does, yes.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (30:38.286)
As one does.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (30:42.486)
See, years ago, I wouldn't have said these weird things. We'd be like, oh my gosh, nobody's gonna, I'm so strange. But right now, I am currently experiencing skill regression, which we can talk about in just a moment. And I love that I found this little, I love the people that you find online and you just go, oh my God, I think this person is Jeremy Andrew Davis on Instagram. And he was doing this.

He's an advocate for like disabled people. Anyway, he was doing this little skit about skill aggressive, which I hope I can make it back to that. But let's get back over here. So, yeah, so I feel like the atomoxetine, you're with me. I know you're with me. Hold on, hold on. There's one little loop I didn't close. Hold on.

Katy Weber (she/her) (31:24.158)
I just like the running commentary. I know, I love it.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (31:27.914)
This is how it is. This is inside my brain, right? I'm like letting it all out. This is how we are. People embrace, embrace your beautiful selves. So that's where I'm at right now. I feel like my husband's like, you are more ADHD now that you know, you're ADHD than you have ever been. And I'm like, you know, now I'm just trying to learn how to be fully myself. I'm trying to I've repressed and pushed and like without even realizing I was doing it all those years of my whole life.

Katy Weber (she/her) (31:35.31)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (31:57.918)
Um, so I am having this huge, like, you know, midlife crisis. And I think the people that have these like big midlife crisis is like huge breakdowns have not been living their true life. And it's just like, life's going to shake you and go, Hey, you're not doing it. You're not doing the thing that you're here to do. And for me, that's what it feels like is like, Oh my gosh, I don't even know who I am. I mean, I have an idea.

Katy Weber (she/her) (32:16.788)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (32:25.526)
Like I think, right? But I've not let Gina be Gina, you know? Like, oh, I've gotta be professional. I'm a curly hair specialist and I went into the business of being a hairstylist, but you know, hairstylists have this awful.

thing that everyone says that they're vapid and like, you know, like really in not what's the word I'm looking for not intelligent right like you do that when you drop out of high school and you don't go to college and like you know that's this is the stigma and for me I'm like I am intelligent and I'm not saying that to like you know

I'm amazing or whatever else. No, I am an intelligent person and I find things fascinating. I find things interesting and I have a lot of passions and I also like doing hair. Don't tell anybody. Shh. Don't. Don't let anybody know.

Katy Weber (she/her) (33:19.37)
Oh my God, I love that, right? But I think it speaks to so much of, you know, so much of the issues around giftedness, right? In terms of, you know, because I was in the gifted program, many of us were, or at least, you know, it's like the problems that we have with...

Gina Marie Rodriguez (33:28.534)
Yes, yes, yes.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (33:34.399)

Katy Weber (she/her) (33:40.126)
intellect, right? It's so many of us have that feeling of like, I know I am very, very smart, but I'm not able to show it in traditional ways. I'm not able to show it in ways that matter. And even when I am able to show it in ways that matter, nothing we accomplish is good enough anyway, right? So even if I was a doctor or, you know, I've had people who were on here who were doctors who were complaining about the fact that they, you know, couldn't

Gina Marie Rodriguez (33:45.748)


Gina Marie Rodriguez (33:57.088)

Katy Weber (she/her) (34:07.406)
clean their bathroom. And it was like, well, don't you get a, don't you get a pass? Right. But right. So it's like, it doesn't matter who we are or what we're doing. We still feel like colossally, um, in, in unworthy. Right. And so I'm like, where's that coming from? Is that coming from just being called gifted at a very young age and being saddled with this expectation of ourselves? Is it something inherent to the neurodivergent

Gina Marie Rodriguez (34:12.624)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (34:25.138)
Yeah, oh yeah, yeah.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (34:34.079)

Katy Weber (she/her) (34:36.778)
Like I often wonder, is there something about seeking dopamine and always being unsatisfied that comes with the boredom, you know, all the stuff you were talking about that boredom that need to stimulate constantly translates into a feeling of always being short of accomplishment, right? Never being good enough, always being a little bit behind. Um, I think it's all interrelated, right? Yeah.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (34:43.874)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (35:02.478)
Or even if it's just in our own head, right? Like it's not even necessarily the world or anybody telling you that you're behind and you're not good enough. It is internal. It's a constant like, oh, I'm just, that wasn't good enough. That wasn't my best work. That wasn't, I could do better than that. You know, like, who am I trying to prove this to myself? I don't know. But as far as this whole, you know, being a hairstylist thing, I was like, yeah, no, if I'm, if I'm going to do this, I am going to be the absolute.

smartest hairstylist, I'm gonna talk about the chemistry and the structure of hair which I find fascinating. Like, I'm like, I, it's so fascinating to me. And then like, I, you know, I do this thing and I know you guys can't see me, but I like push up the center of my glasses and I go, well, well.

Katy Weber (she/her) (35:37.34)
Of course you do!

Katy Weber (she/her) (35:44.852)
You're the geekiest hairstylist out there. I like, that's kind of actually a really good branding. If you're looking to rebrand, just be like the nerd, right? Yeah.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (35:54.15)
I know, I kind of am. I'm like, wait a minute, which neurodivergent geeky hairstylist, you know, the cultivated curl, no, the neurodivergent geeky hairstylist. Like, what are you talking about?

But yeah, I had to, you know, I had to differentiate myself. Oh, first of all, I grew up in a hair salon. So this wasn't like, I just decided I don't know where to do hair. I grew up in a hair salon. My dad went to beauty school. My mom went to beauty school. They had, I grew up literally in the back room of a hair salon. So I've been around this my entire life. I've heard how salon conversations go. And like I've talked to my mom, who I think is an intelligent woman as well, but she would also say like, you know.

Katy Weber (she/her) (36:05.617)
So I...

Gina Marie Rodriguez (36:30.838)
You have to do a good job. The client is paying you to do a good job and you can't actually focus on, like there's a lot of science and chemistry and like math going on in there. If people don't even realize that's what's actually happening, at least in my chair it is, but that's what's happening there. And it's all just, you know, for beauty. And it's like, it's all just for, you wanna look good. And, but there's so much more involved in.

the service itself, you know, you're mixing up chemicals and you're all the different things and you actually have to focus on the placement of the color or the placement of the foils and the angle that you're cutting the hair and all the things you have to focus on. You cannot actually have a deep, deep conversation and do these things that take a lot of focus. So

Katy Weber (she/her) (37:22.187)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (37:23.338)
we keep the conversation light. And that's what she, you know, my whole life, she's like, you just keep the conversation light. You know, you always bring it back to like, oh, I heard you got a new puppy. And, you know, and I'm just like, oh, I can't, oh, God. I cannot, please. Oh my gosh. Oh, how's your granddaughter doing? Oh, that's so amazing. I can't, I can't do it.

Katy Weber (she/her) (37:37.826)

Katy Weber (she/her) (37:41.344)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (37:50.626)
So I remember when I was in beauty school, I actually was like super like, I'm going to, I'm going to learn everything. I'm going to be the best, best beauty school student there ever was because that's what I do. And I wanted to put a sign on the station that said, please do not talk to me because one, I didn't want to do that. This, this stupid.

like talk. I didn't want to talk about the puppies and the, you know, the weather and the who cares? I don't want to talk about that. I'm focusing on learning how to do your hair. Do you want a good haircut? Do you want a haircut? First of all, shut up. Shut up. Let me do my job. I'm learning right now. I'm a student.

Katy Weber (she/her) (38:23.778)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (38:30.442)
And of course the instructors would be like, Gina, you have to also learn the art of small talk and conversation. I'm like, oh my God, this is what's gonna kill me. This is what is gonna do me in. But you know, I learned how to do it. But every once in a while, a client would come in and like, they just seemed interesting. Like.

Katy Weber (she/her) (38:41.288)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (38:52.954)
Now that I know I'm ADHD, now that I know how we work in our community, we're like sparkling diamonds to each other, you know? And every once in a while there'd be like a sparkling diamond in my chair and I'm just like, oh my gosh, I'm gonna take a risk and say something interesting. And like, then they'd be like, oh my gosh, and they would say something back to me and then of course...

Katy Weber (she/her) (39:09.535)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (39:13.962)
My haircut now has taken an hour and a half because I'm standing off to the side. My hands are just flying in the air. You can't, you can't actually, I'm Italian too as well. Like you can't like have your hands flying in the air while you're talking about things because you've been so expressive and you're like just really passionate about the thing that you're talking about because the hair is sitting over there being uncut while your hands are flying around.

Katy Weber (she/her) (39:30.242)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (39:31.498)
So you get back to this, go back over behind the hair, you know. And so my clients now know like when Gina goes quiet, she's thinking, I'm looking at my angles and everything else. And all of a sudden I'd be like, Oh my gosh, and we go on and on and on. So like over the years I've been doing hair for 17 years now, over the years I've discovered I've just collected this like gorgeous little collection of just beautiful gems, sparkly gems. And most of them have no idea that they are ADHD, but I do. I know that they are now.

But a lot of them actually will say that they are. In fact, I have to say this because it's hilarious. At least I think it's hilarious because you know how quirky we are. So I had one client who, I just felt like I could talk to her about it and I was just like, yeah, I got recently diagnosed with ADHD and you know, I was gifted and all that blah, and she goes, you know, I knew you were gifted the moment I sat down in your chair. And I was like, what?

How did you know that? And she says, what's the active ingredient in Olaplex again? I was like, oh, bismetapropyl dyglycol dimelate.

Katy Weber (she/her) (40:32.429)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (40:35.234)
And I went, oh, yeah, right. Which is why I write articles for, you know, Read Curl magazine.

Instagram at re curl magazine is the name of the magazine. I write articles all about like, everybody's always asking me, what's the science of hair? What is what is this specific thing? You know, and then I just the other day I just went down this rabbit hole and I was so excited because I discovered a problem that one of my clients was having and she had to go to a dermatologist and the dermatologist couldn't figure it out. But she gave her this other thing that didn't seem like it was quite right. So it took me down this like long research rabbit hole and I discovered this like really rare fungus.

that was growing in her hair and I was like, this is so cool, it's fungus. Now you have to throw away all your bedsheets and like disinfect everything that you own and go to a dermatologist and specifically say this name so that they can be like, oh, because it's so rare. And I was like on cloud nine for like three days. I still kind of am. Oh my God, I found a solution. Yeah, it's like dopamine.

Katy Weber (she/her) (41:31.198)
Right? Because we found the solution, right? That's the ultimate, right? We found the pro- We, I know, that's so cool. You know, I feel like I love this. You know, we talk a lot about jobs. I feel like I talk a lot about being a journalist and how journalism felt really, really great for ADHD. And I feel like probably most people who work in newsrooms have ADHD. Teachers is another one, nurses.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (41:41.155)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (41:53.358)
Oh, totally.

Katy Weber (she/her) (41:55.586)
But hairstyle is like the more, you know, the more you talk about it, I'm like, it really is tailor-made for somebody with ADHD. Like you're standing, every head is a different head, right? It's like every person who walks in that door is somebody different. But also I love all this stuff. I was just gonna say it's so artistic, but then there's also like the science and the, you know, and I'm like, ah, it's perfect. I'm, it really is.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (42:04.19)
Yeah. Every person. And you can within... Go ahead. No. Yeah.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (42:17.15)
Yeah, there actually are, I know so many hairstylists now that are ADHD and I'm like, of course, of course you are. Of course you are, of course we all are. And you know, I've been doing this again, I say for 17 years and within that 17 years, I have traveled all over the world, teaching on stages became a...

brand manager, I trained staff, I found educators, I was in charge of the entire team for the West Coast for a little while, while I was pregnant with my first one, which I thought that I was going to go back to traveling four days a week after I had the baby. As soon as I saw the baby, I was like, I will never ever, ever leave you. And you know, I had to quit that position. Then I was like, oh, you know, because I was teaching hair color and I was teaching all these different things and becoming a stage artist. And then I was like, what?

Katy Weber (she/her) (42:57.144)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (43:07.586)
What do I want to do now? Like, I have to, what am I going to do? I have to re always reinventing myself, right? Within my career. I was like, you know what I really, really love and what I wish I could have done from the beginning. I love working with curly hair. I just love it because curly hair lives in 3D. Straight hair lives in 2D and 3D I can create like sculpture. I cut it dry. I can see the shape happening as I'm creating. And it's just, it's so fulfilling for me.

And I was like, I think I'm gonna do that. And a friend of mine was like, is that a good business choice? Like if you just cut curly hair? And I'm like, I don't care at this point. Like that's what I'm gonna do. And it's been like one of the best things, you know? I got on, I became an advisor for Curl Magazine for the year of 2020, which was like the worst year it'd possibly be doing anything, you know? But I cut Dr. Jen Gunter's hair for the cover of that. And I like got this really cool

It's just been really cool. I've just enjoyed that and it's allowed me to get super geeky.

and I love my work and then I realized that the majority of the people stick around with me are neurodivergent themselves. And so then I look at my board every day and I've decided I only see three people a day. That's, that's all I'm going to do because that's, that's all I want to do. Like I still want to have some energy when I get home to see my kids and stuff. I'm just not going to like work myself to death. I'm just not going to. So this is what I charge. This is, it gives me a fair wage. This is what it is. This is how we go. And, um, by the way, in 2020 when all the salons were closed in California,

for like a total of like six months. Devastating. It was devastating. And I had already been thinking I wanted to make a course on curly hair because you know how if we happen to say the same thing over and over and over it's just really boring.

So I was seeing clients a new client would come in and I would say the same thing over and over do the teaching Right and I was like after a while like I can't do this or I'd get to the end of the day and at the time I was seeing like six clients a day at the end of the day I would think that I had said the thing but this person wasn't getting the best service because they I Thought that I said it and I did I said it to the first two people and then as the day went on I was saying less and less and less

and they weren't getting like the full benefit. And I was like, if I make a course and I can have them watch this before they come in and they can learn all the things, they can hear all the stuff and I'll be fresh every time. And so that was in my mind.

but I didn't know it was too big of a task to like, it was overwhelming. I really wanted to do it. 2020 comes down, everything's shut down. And I immediately go into like, okay, I'm gonna put this together. Like right now I put it together. I started selling a small version of it. And then I like added some more stuff and I sold that. And then I added more, there was coaching element to it. So there's live coaching videos on there. And then I did that and I was like, this is gonna be amazing. And then all of a sudden I hit burned out.

And that's when my breakdown happened. And I was like, oh my God, thank the heavens that I had the ability to make that program when I did. Because if anybody asked me to make it now, six months ago, last year, the program would not exist because I just couldn't, I can't even imagine.

Katy Weber (she/her) (46:11.146)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (46:33.206)
doing that right now. Just we are so amazing that when we have everything, we line up and we do the thing and then we put it out in the world. And then all of a sudden it's like, I don't even know how I would do that. I have no idea how I did it.

Katy Weber (she/her) (46:47.671)

Right. Well, it's because the interest element is gone now and it's been replaced. It's like, it's like Tamara Rosier talks about in the book with the interest quadrant and the importance quadrant. Like it's like when it suddenly there's things that I've done too, where I'm like, I could never do that now because I've already done it. So therefore the interest is gone. And so now it's just a thing that's important, right? So it's like half the battle is just being able to do the thing and convince yourself, you know, just to show yourself, you can

Gina Marie Rodriguez (46:53.331)
Yeah, and also...

Gina Marie Rodriguez (47:00.935)
Yeah, yeah.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (47:06.766)
Mm-mm. Yeah. No, that's true. Yeah.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (47:19.978)
Well, also because I had to, we were down to the wire. Like there was no income coming in. Like there was that scarcity, that like last minute, that like, you know, immediacy took over. And my family didn't see me for two months. Like I was just up in my office, just editing. I taught myself how to edit video. I don't even remember how to do it anymore. But like at the moment I made that happen, you know? But.

Katy Weber (she/her) (47:23.58)
Mmm, yeah.

Katy Weber (she/her) (47:31.41)
Yeah, yeah.

Katy Weber (she/her) (47:44.094)
Yeah, that was kind of the podcast for me too. I would like hyper-focused on, on how to sound edit and microphones and every, like that was, I was obsessed in the beginning. Um, and now I'm like, oh yeah, I had to outsource all of that cause it got too hard and boring. But in the beginning it was like, Oh my God, I would spend hours and hours and hours doing all of it. Um, yeah, wow. So yeah, so, okay. So are you, but you do see your clients. If somebody lives in the Sacramento area, they can, they can.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (47:47.978)
Oh yeah.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (47:59.181)
Oh, yes!

Gina Marie Rodriguez (48:03.762)

Katy Weber (she/her) (48:12.722)
see you as a real life client, right? Okay.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (48:13.114)
Yeah, I actually have people who drive a couple hours to come down and see me. I've got a client that lives in New Mexico, a client lives in Idaho, and they like fly in, which is kind of cool. It's really cool. Yeah.

Katy Weber (she/her) (48:23.146)
Oh, amazing. But yeah, okay, so I'll definitely have links to your website and the courses. You have the Frizz to Fab course, and there's another one, right? What is the other one called? Refresh your curls, right? Yeah.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (48:32.698)
Oh, yeah. Yeah. Is the first. Yeah. Oh, that one I still haven't like Refresh Like a Boss. That one I was actually putting together right when my breakdown happened.

and I haven't been able to pull myself back to do it. I'm like, you have to do it. You got to do it. I just haven't been able to pull myself back to do it. But I have the wash day blueprint, which is my big, like the one that I have people go through so that they hear all the information that I have and just like all the good stuff. And I walk you through like four weeks of like how to like step by step, little by little, to build your routine, build your routine, build your routine. And I've just heard from

Katy Weber (she/her) (48:46.381)

Katy Weber (she/her) (48:52.278)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (49:14.166)
I know it's a bit much for some people, but like what I've learned is like for us, it's not. It's not a bit much. It's, you know, it goes into like all the way through. You learn so much because that's what I, I can't do it if it's not that.

Katy Weber (she/her) (49:28.567)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (49:28.618)
But then the frizz de fab was like I need to have a little program Some people just go like oh my gosh 165 like I don't know off the bat like I don't even know who you are I don't like well take this little tiny one and like you can figure out if am I the kind of person that like you Would even want to like work with and it's like, you know only an hour of your time, so So yeah, so I did that one and that was that was really cool. I wish I had the Motivation to make the other one

Katy Weber (she/her) (49:56.354)
uh or the you know it's not even just motivation it's like i just wish i could clone myself uh and so that like multiple versions of me could go in all the different directions that i want to go in at all times like what is that is that right but i feel like that's what it feels like when you're just like i have all so many ideas and i want to do them all right now because i know if i don't do them all right now

Gina Marie Rodriguez (50:11.275)
I know, right?

Gina Marie Rodriguez (50:16.378)
So many things!

I'm gonna go.

Katy Weber (she/her) (50:21.918)
It's not going to get done. And I don't know which one to do first. And then you just end up doing nothing because you're burnt out. And then it's like, ah, here we go again. Right. It's like the ADHD life cycle.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (50:29.118)
Yes, I know. My husband's like, stop taking things on. Stop taking things on. And I had to tell him recently, I'm like, you know what? Now that you know that I have ADHD, your oldest daughter has ADHD and our little one probably has it as well, but she's going to get diagnosed again with the rest of the diagnosis next year. Like, and you know that everybody in my family, we discovered, has ADHD. And my dad's dyslexic. Like, it's all it's all, you know, the same thing. And I'm like, now that you know all this.

You have to realize it is impossible for me to not take on new things. But what I need you to do, what I need help with, is to realize that I can't take on any more.

that I need to finish this, either I need to quit it or I need to finish it before I take on a new thing. Remind me of all the things that I'm doing, because I forget like life, taking care of children, being a wife and maintaining a relationship, taking care of animals, going to work. Those are all things that take a lot of mental energy. And I forget that that's a commitment that I have to do, that those are things that are gonna always take energy. And there's not enough left over to do.

all the things I want to do. So I have to choose them systematically, like one by one, and also realize now that I know what ADHD is, I'm not taking on a new role that's going to be like a long-term thing because I know that won't work for me. It has to be this short little thing. There has to be a finite time. Like I just volunteered to direct the first and second grade play next spring.

And I'm so excited about it because there's 11 rehearsals plus tech week. Yes, it's gonna be exhausting. It is going to be stressful. I'm gonna have to like, you know, wrangle all these like little first and second graders. But guess what? It's one performance. And at that performance, all the families are gonna go, my god, because how can you not, you know? The little kids acting on stage like doing Winnie the Pooh. What? Like, my god, they're gonna be so amazing. Thank you so much, Gina. And then I'm gonna get all the dopamine. And I'm gonna feel amazing. And that's what it's for. And then I'm gonna, okay.

Katy Weber (she/her) (52:18.44)

Katy Weber (she/her) (52:31.05)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (52:31.79)
next thing, you know.

Katy Weber (she/her) (52:34.218)
Right? I was going to say, I used to do that with my son, with my kids, elementary school, with their play. And it would be like, and then I would sleep. I'd be so exhausted and I would sleep. Um, and then, but immediately I would be like, I'm bored. Like it was so fast. Right? Exactly. It would be like, Oh, I can't wait to sleep for a week. I can't wait to sleep for a week. And then the next day I would be lying around so exhausted and I'd be like, okay, now what, what do I do now? Like it's just, and I'd be like, I, ah, right. It's that compulsion. I totally get it.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (52:40.942)
Mmm. Oh, yes.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (52:47.05)
Yeah, exactly. What's the next thing? What's the next thing? It's so fast. It is.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (52:56.285)
Right. Yup.

Katy Weber (she/her) (53:04.066)
Um, so, okay, so I, now I know you talked about your sparkly gems, but do you have a name for ADHD? If you would, if you could come up with a, an alternate name.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (53:11.642)
Yeah, yeah, I gosh, I mean, it would be so much easier to keep the current, you know, ADHD, right? You know, because we're all there. But like attention dysregulation, because that's what we have. It's a dysregulation of attention that we don't have deficit. It's definitely not a deficit. It is a lot of attention that needs to be regulated. So it's attention dysregulation,

because we are low dopamine. We don't have dopamine, we're always searching. That's why the attention needs to be regulated because we're always looking for more dopamine. It's constantly seeking. And so then I don't know if the hypodopamine is an HD or if that's just an H and then the D becomes like, disposition.

or disorder. I don't like disorder. I don't want it to be a disorder. Like it's a disability. Like we're disposed. We're predisposed, right? To be this way is the way that we are like. And so here here's how ADHD and gifted, which I think giftedness is actually in the future going to be discovered as another level on the autism spectrum. I think giftedness is autistic adjacent. And because we, we always approach these things like we know everything that exists in the universe right now. No, 10 years from now, we're going to discover that we don't know anything. So, you know, anyway, so here's just how.

Katy Weber (she/her) (53:55.754)
No, no, no. Yeah. I like just...

Gina Marie Rodriguez (54:23.162)
nerdy. I push my glasses up for those that are listening. How nerdy I am. Disposition means the predominant or prevailing tendency of one's spirit, natural mental and emotional outlook or mood characteristic attitude. Are you kidding me? Disposition, of course. Yeah. So attention, dysregulation, hypodomian disposition.

Katy Weber (she/her) (54:38.786)
Mmm, that is a really good one.

Katy Weber (she/her) (54:47.083)
Love it.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (54:49.394)
I also love, there was another guess and I was searching and searching frantically and I couldn't find because I could never find who said what and I just listened to all of them so fast. Someone gave it an actual name, like there's dyslexia, right? And someone gave it an actual just like a name that was like Greek or something like that or maybe it was French, I think it was maybe French. I don't know. And I was like, oh, that's beautiful. I have Gapadakara.

Yeah, yeah. All right.

Katy Weber (she/her) (55:17.598)
Right? Well, that's what I always feel like is great about autism too, is that it's not, you know, you're not, it's just not, it's not a term that is defined by its deficits. And so there's expansion there. There's so much room for, you know, for description of what it is and who we are. Right. And so it's just everything about the term ADHD is just so like, you are a fuck up basically. Right. And so it's like, how can, you know, in so much of this is about reframing.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (55:25.856)


Gina Marie Rodriguez (55:33.738)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (55:40.958)
Yeah, yeah.

Katy Weber (she/her) (55:46.87)
that it's like, you know, it's, it's so tragic. Although I did have a guest recently who talked about, you know, she was the same thing. She was like, I don't want to change ADHD because the acronym has meant so much to me, right? I'm willing to just accept the acronym. But she was also like, I find it very apropos that somebody with ADHD has like screwed up how to even talk about ADHD, right? Like that we couldn't kind of like, that even the name.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (55:56.554)
I mean, yeah.

Katy Weber (she/her) (56:15.266)
feels so off and, and just like, it, like it tumbled out and nobody really understands what it means and it doesn't seem to make any sense. And she's like, there's something appropriate about that. I was like, yeah, you're right. Um, I like that. Um, hypodopamine disposition. I liked it. That's a good one. I really liked that.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (56:27.92)
I guess so, I guess so.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (56:34.092)

Katy Weber (she/her) (56:35.606)
Well, thank you so much, Gina. This has been wonderful. I loved listening to you explain. I feel like a lot. I just I feel like you just explained a lot of our experiences so well. So I feel like that is that's what I think listeners benefit so much from hearing that, right? Where you're just like, oh, my goodness, you've just explained what is happening in my brain right now. You've just explained what's happening in my body. And then that's kind of that unmasking too, which is like.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (56:41.419)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (56:53.826)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (56:59.214)

Katy Weber (she/her) (57:03.05)
We were always experiencing that. We just didn't have the ability to put words to it, right? And so it's like, one of the things that I love about unmasking, especially around my husband and my kids and my family, is the fact that I can now be like, oh, this is why I'm doing this, or this is why, you know. And so I loved when you were talking about like the little commentary about like chasing the thought and being like, okay, it's coming to me, there's an image, and then the words are gonna come, right? It's like following that, ooh.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (57:08.395)

Gina Marie Rodriguez (57:29.27)

Katy Weber (she/her) (57:32.194)
following out, like it's like, that's that ability to kind of say out loud what we had always kept to ourselves and tamped down and, and pushed down. And so now it's like, Oh, this is me and all of my wonderful eccentricities. I know. So thank you for being eccentric with me for this hour. I really, really appreciate it.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (57:38.262)
Yeah. Yes!

Gina Marie Rodriguez (57:46.19)
It's so eccentric. Yes, exactly. Yes.

Gina Marie Rodriguez (57:54.142)
Thanks for creating a space that allows people to be their true eccentric selves. I mean, that's what my journey is right now. It's like, how do I uncover all the layers of like all this weirdness that I've been depriving the world of?

Katy Weber (she/her) (57:59.76)

Katy Weber (she/her) (58:13.452)
I love it. Alright, thank you.