Saturday, April 19, 2008

It is nearly a year!

I mentioned to Melissa C. that I wanted to have a party to celebrate the one year anniversary of my brain surgery and she thought it sounded weird. I suppose it does but don't we celebrate the milestones in our life? How about the one year anniversary of the day I could have died but I didn't? Or how about one year ago, a bunch of people helped me make it through a rough time and I want to say thank you by inviting you all to dinner.

I am in a good place right now because even though I am still having problems with my memory, keeping track of time, writing on the board while trying to explain a concept, concentrating, effectively carrying out any plan, or writing a minimal TO-DO list in under 45 minutes, things are looking up. I met Jason C. and he reminded me of the importance of gratitude. My principal is finally beginning to understand that the problems I am experiencing are not as a result of my unrealistically high expectations for myself nor due to some emotional breakdown people perceive me as having. At Melissa C's suggestion, I found a benign brain tumor support group. They laughed as I described my frustrations over the past year, not out of ridicule, but recognition.
"I feel guilty complaining when I am lucky to be alive."
"I do not really want to hear how great I look."
"The over sixties all tell me none of them remember a thing either. And did you lose your memory overnight when you had brain surgery at 44?"
"Why do people think it is reassuring to hear, 'Well, you're still smarter than most people.'"
"Don't you think the pressure is causing those symptoms? I think you are just depressed."

I AM NOT DEPRESSED! I love life! I love laughing and talking with my daughter! I love my husband and family! I love knitting and painting and sewing and math! I love crossword puzzles and fixing things! I love the beach and my dog and cereal and helping kids learn to love math as much as I do! I love looking at beautiful art! I love wearing clothes that are different from what everyone else wears! I love coming up with creative ideas and inventing things!

So I think it is okay to celebrate. I will celebrate life and the gift that we all have to have it!