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!


MoJo said...

I sm SOOOO pleased to see that you are celebrating your one year anniversary. Wish I could be there to congratulate you in person, but know I am there in spirit. Better late than never!

Glad you liked your braclet!


Anonymous said...

My partner, Mark 56, had a hemorrhage of a caverous angioma in the winter of 2006. Unfortunately his is in the brain stem and was inoperable. After 7 weeks in ICU (at a neuro hospital in Phila., PA) and 7 weeks at rehab he came home. Your description of how it is inside your head is excellent. People tell him the same thing, but unfortuantely, he can't explain it the was you have. With your permission I am going to copy it and let him give it to people who tell him that he should try harder and not pity himself. I am so angry at these people I could scream. I see the difficulty he has with everyday things most people take for granted. Thank you for that wonderful post.


Vampdaddy said...

On September 30th my 31/2 year old son will celebrate one year from his last chemo treatment for a brain tumor. There will be dancing. There has to be, I think.

Party on.

NEdream26 said...

Congrats on celebrating that milestone!! I just celebrated my improvements one-year post-accident. I would love to add a link of your blog to mine :)

Slow steps are still steps in the right direction! Best wishes for continued improvements!