The first time I cried over my situation was around Thanksgiving 2011 – 7-8 months after my AVM rupture and stroke. I had cried only a couple of times specifically over not being able to walk – out of fear/frustration – but this was pure grief, as I realized that this had really happened to me.
I do not do things by halves, and this cry was no exception. We were at Ai Ai and Tim’s and I was sleeping in Hannah’s room during naptime. My iPod had been a great comfort to me in the hospital (I listened with wonder that my playlists were all intact in my “dream”) and I was listening to it with the shades drawn. When “Rescue” by Desperation Band came on the floodgates opened.
I need you, Jesus,
To come to my rescue –
Where else can I go?
There’s no other name
By which I am saved.
Capture me with grace,
I will follow You…
It was ugly. I boo hoo’ed with a sense of urgency and a depth of loss I hadn’t known before. I was so loud Mommy heard the commotion over my baby monitor and came upstairs (followed closely by Tanpo) to check on me.
Ai Ai told me a couple months ago that no one really knew just how confused I was (the true impact of my brain injury) when I first came home since I did such a great job of covering it up. “I was playing along,” I explained. I still do that to some extent – except now I’m not humoring people bc I think this situation is fake, I’m positioning myself because I know this situation is all too real.
The question, “Where else can I go,” speaks to me deeply. The fact that I got sick and am now busy getting better is so much more than being an “inspiration” and a testament to the power of positive thinking. People have told me that I’m both of these things, and I do appreciate those sentiments, but if Recovery depended solely on them I’d be sunk. The timing and severity of my injury were so pointed I took it extremely personally – my feelings were hurt (understatement). I did not need a new strategy for living. I needed Words of Life. And that’s what I got.