Sunday, July 24, 2011

Letting the Light Shine

"There is a crack in everything. That's how the light gets in." Leonard Cohen

I am at the one year anniversary of my concussion so I thought I should update, reminisce and speculate, even philosophically, on my state.

The quote by Mr. Cohen, sums up the year for me. 

I spent the first part of recovery, existing in a pain filled fog, trying to push myself to get better, to return to what I had come to accept as 'normal'. As stated in a previous post, I lamented what was lost, trying to recover/go back to 'before'. I knew in my head that a part was missing, was gone. Unable to access, password unaccepted, admission denied. Of course, I focused on what was my past, instead of what was my present. 

Learning to live with a loss is tough on everybody. Besides myself, this effected and affected my husband the most. I am so very thankful, every day that I married a very patient and understanding man. We had to learn to communicate again. We both had worked hard before children to get the communication thing down and after my concussion, we had to learn some new techniques. It has been frustrating, painful and tiring- and worth every minute of careful conversations that we have endured. We are always working on us, individually and together. My concussion didn't change that, however it reminded us of the importance of our friendship and of our deep respect for each other.

Letting the creative juices flow. Anyone who knows me can attest to the fact that I am a fighter and that I don't let my struggles keep me down. This concussion has taught me more about myself than I ever knew possible. I've learned to let go of what I thought I was versus what I want to be. I 'thought' I wanted to be a career woman who lived in the corporate world. I was scared of taking life by the horns and living it my way. (Although, Jen would say that the song,"My Way" is my theme song and has been since HS.) 

I've begun to listen to that gut of mine, the intuition that whispers to me. Opportunity has come knocking and I find myself employed for the first time since October of 2009. I've returned to music, which has always been a passion of mine. The job fits my life with the flexibility and the part time. It allows me to give nourishment to the other creative parts of me that have been languishing for attention.

I've realized that my creativity has been sparked since that day a year ago. I've always had a creative side, but the business, type a, side of my brain always seemed to get in the way of my creativity. The part of me that was impacted the most was the stressed out, type a business woman. It is like I was hit on my head in just the right place to loosen up the creative juices. Prior to my injury, I followed paths set before me by others, namely businesses and bosses. The loss of that side of my thinking has forced me to let go of my fear and to stop being scared of being who I really am, to live each day and to go for my dreams.

Inspiration I've been inspired by so many people that I've met through the pcs page on fb. I realize, I am not alone - with the daily head aches and tinnitus, the barometric pressure meter living inside my skull, the forgetfulness. I have become accustomed to my dear brain, built a tolerance to the twinges and learned techniques that help me to cope. As always, I continue to be a student of life, with bits of inspiration tingling at every corner, from Rebecca, my cousin, who is shooting for the moon with her own dreams(inspiring me to do the same), from Evan, my husband, with his amazing patience and gentleness, my girls, with their amazing zest for life and the drive to laugh. The list of inspiration is too great to complete.

I can say that I have improved and I know I will continue to heal.

Life is too short and it has taken me this long to finally understand. Now, that I have lost, that I was lost, I am now found. I am cracked, but that is how the light gets in. 

Monday, July 11, 2011


Day by day, I discover what my capabilities are.
Back in April, I sat down to file our taxes. My husband was nearby to take over if I needed him to. I started using Turbo Tax last year. This year, I sat at the computer and was able to enter the information, step by step. I completed our taxes and became very happy. I felt proud of myself that I had accomplished this task for my family.

One of the issues with post concussive syndrome, is the relearning, the adjusting to what is the capabilities of the person/brain -NOW. The feelings of uselessness can be a poison that seeps into the soul that is already weeping at the loss of abilities. Knowing what I once could do and then being in the situation of not knowing what I could handle or accomplish has been unnerving, unsettling and frightening.

Being able to step back and see what are pros and cons of any situation in regards to how my brain is handling it has only begun recently, thanks to my medication. I've realized that if I have a task, such as the taxes, I approach with caution as a Lion Tamer with a whip and a chair and approach gently. I am surprising myself, pleasantly so.

I've become accustomed to you, my dear Brain. Instead of berating, and feeling distress at what isn't- I've realized that I must handle you with care. Firmly, but gently-With patience, lined with strength and understanding.

So dear Brain, lets continue to surprise one another and I will work on my biggest challenge, patience.