Friday, September 13, 2013

Growing Up...

I've finally come to a major epiphany about my recovery. When I came out of coma my brain was, psychologically, an infant. An infant with the memories of a 44 year old combat veteran Freemason.

I am sure that the people who tried to help me intended nothing but the best however how do you help that patient along? Especially with something as complex, as varied, as alienable as traumatic brain injury? You do your best with what you have in front of you and hope for good results.

As an example, three months after my accident I was able to log on to my home computers. (Not a password that my wife can even remember) I was able to reboot my home internal network (self built) and get everything humming along nicely. However, psychologically I was not even a toddler. I had to be taught how to use English (again), how to swallow (from being tube fed), and even how to walk. This is the body of a man who has done 25 mile military marches and I had to learn how to walk again??

As the months go by, I wrestle with the memories of my experiences. They have always been at hand. I have a strong and healthy long term memory. Even if that weakened a bit a will never forget my time in "Desert Storm", ever.

So how do medical people deal with the slowly awakening mind of a Combat Tested Motorpool Sergeant? My suggestion: Very very carefully.

But that brings me to my current enemy: Depression. I can feel it reaching it's fingers out and slowly scrabbling around for an opening. However whenever it does I stomp on it. I remind myself of the good works I have shared in, of the good will I have been allowed to spread, I remember that I don't suck as much as I think I do.

I could list all the things that sadden me right now but that would just be an opening that it needs to grow. So I'm just going to tell you what I tell anyone who asks me how I am doing. "I am six feet over. And that beats the alternative!"

PS: I think I am about 26 now. In a 45 year olds body but just 26.

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