Today, December 18 2016, I decided to reflect back on my year. It is not only the approach of 2017 that makes a good reason for this reflection but also, I am nearing the anniversary of my accident, December 2015.
I have had strange experiences in life but this year by far was the most bizarre of all. It was like a movie that its story was unfolding as I was distancing myself and watching it from afar. The strange part was how I was watching myself as the SUPER STAR of this movie. I was the hero going through all the conflicts and triumphs. A movie that is still not finished. I am still going with it but I feel like the third act is shaping up. We are getting near to that climax , I hope.
A year of loneliness. While I have always enjoyed being alone and experiencing life on my own terms, I was never subjected to being alone. Since, I could not talk on the phone, use the screen, or even talk to people in person, I had to face a lot of chatter in my mind. Wow, my mind speaks a lot if you let it! I actually learned, social life is such a blessing because you never have time for listening to your mind as much as I had to!
Have I been avoiding my mind talking to me all the time before the accident?
I do not recall if I had avoided it but I certainly did not have time for it. TIME, the entity that I always longed for in my life was now available to me. I had TIME but I had lost MY ABILITY. This was such an irony there that amidst all my pain, I did not know if I should cry or laugh.
Injury and sickness are never fun things to deal with. PAIN.. PAIN .. PAIN.. and encore more PAIN is never easy to cope with. The biggest challenge for me was dealing with the UNKNOWN. I was Not understanding the gravity of the matter. I was experiencing white blindness. I was blind with regards to where I stand, what I have to deal with, and for how long.
I was never a control freak but at this time, I wish I could have a tiny bit control over this situation. What exactly is the problem, how do I deal with it, and when do I get out of it. THERE WAS NO ANSWER.
And that was SO hard.
But the hardest part HAS BEEN and IS the invisibility and the intangibility of this injury.
My brain was injured. It would hurt when I think.
Can you recall a time when you could stop your brain from thinking?
Your brain thinks NON STOP even in the sleep.
I could not figure out how to live with myself. I had to live with a brain who would hurt to think. Ouch!
I had to live with a situation that only I knew. There was no physical evidence. No sign of what I was dealing with. There was no cast on my head. There was no sign saying: ACT WITH CAUTION, BRAIN RECOVERY IN PROGRESS on my forehead.
And many times I wished and wished there were such a sign.
At least for me if not for everyone else.
Because I simply did not know how easily it fatigues and how much rest it needs. It was so OBSCURE to me. I would know that I have pushed it too far when it started hurting and when it started, it would not STOP..
And when I learned more, I sometimes knew that it will hurt more if I stay and have that additional 5 minutes of conversation with another mom but I would still do it. I would still go on.
And no, I was not crazy.
It was my cry for life. It was yearning to socialize and be myself. I was rebelling against my own brain. I was not accepting that it is injured and it needs rest. I could not bring myself down that talking casually about something pleasant would be so hard on my brain. The same brain I used at one point to be amongst the 1% who passed mathematical statistics course back when I was working on my Bachelor’s. The same brain I used to be the only female, PhD candidate in my field working as a consultant with factory workers in Iran… I could not digest it.. I was unable to understand my injury…
It took me a while and a lot of twists and turn to learn how to deal with pain, with myself, and separate pain from suffering.
I had to lie down for hours staring at the ceiling and SUFFER from pain. I could not read, write, watch anything on screens, nothing. For a fast-paced on the go person, this was the worst punishment.
My craniosacral therapist looked at me one day and said;
“What do you do when you finish your meditation?”
I pray. It was my reply.
I was resenting my accident. I was blaming my non-stop life for taking so long for my brain to heal.
I stopped. She made me remember:
How did you get here?
Close your eyes . . .
And I certainly tried. Surrendering opened new doors. Doors that I did not know they exist. It took me to places that I humbly observed and learned. Learned how to bend and change, learned how to let go, learned how to live more in the present..
And that all these LEARNINGS is a GIFT.
A GIFT that may be I was meant to receive.
A MINDSET that needed to be shifted.
And as I continue on my journey of healing, now I have a different view, a gift to share and that is the light plan for my 2017. For now, I want to live and experience the warm and fuzzy of last days of this eventful 2016 which turned me to a different person.