Why Do I Feel This Way?
November 6th, 2019
Why do I feel so overwhelmed? Why am I second guessing everything? Why such elevated pain and anxiety? Why even think this? Feel this? Write this? Eat this? Try this? Want this? Share this?
With increased time since my accident and hard-fought albeit minor medical progress, I sense the pace of my life escalating — and with it, heightened expectations of what I can, should or must do, stemming from myself, from medical professionals and from others. That terrifies me.
I am still struggling in a deeply dark, damaged place both physically and psychologically from the bodily injuries and brain trauma I sustained two months ago. I have enough to contend with minute by minute, without additional self-imposed or outside pressures, stresses or conjectures. What I did, felt capable of, attempted or achieved yesterday sadly, inexplicably and infuriatingly has no baring on my abilities or realities today. Trust me, I too want to heal, fast-forward time, snap my fingers and be as good as new, whatever that may look like… but I am NOWHERE near there yet.
I decide to share when and what I want, primarily for me — but also because the support, strength, prayer, outreach and understanding of community is indeed powerful. However it can create false hope, overeagerness or negative feedback loops, which make me regret daring to accept and articulate small moments of joy, light or victory. I don’t grasp anywhere near the full picture of what is happening, nor does any doctor, and I put barely a fraction of that limited knowledge out for public consumption, or even to trusted inner circles. There is much that no one knows, whether because of conscious choice to hold it sacred or due to the fact that I don’t have a clue what the hell is really going on. I am simply trying to live, to make sense of the present, to chart a way through, to find safety, and to share what feels right on my own timeline, based on some arbitrary, experimental and inexact thought process.
There are innumerable what ifs, unknowns, variables and question marks layered atop each other every single day. I can’t predict what recovery has in store, nor what I can handle, but I have to be daring enough to try new things, stretch myself ever so slightly and push my limits within reason responsibly — or there would be no new discovery, no forward progress, no necessary growth. I typically don’t know what my body and brain are capable of until it suddenly becomes too much. Sometimes I get warning signs, incremental pain or signals of that looming divide, but too often, I reach the breaking point without warning, and then crumble entirely. All I can do is the next best thing, whenever I am ready. At some point, if able to regain any strength or perspective, I attempt to process, grapple with and comprehend the unfamiliar and wholly unpleasant sensations, emotions and experiences, as to find a way forward through the hardship, trauma and suffering, acknowledging that each time is unique and therefore untested.
I try to learn from what I face, make intentional choices where possible and take control of whatever elements seem realistic, but again, I really don’t know. And that’s scary, frustrating and near impossible to explain, even to my own self, let alone to others. There is no fix, no surefire help, no guarantees on this journey, despite believing fiercely, maintaining faith or having the best of intentions. I can’t answer your questions, will miraculous healing into existence or offer up much of anything with reliability, nor should I be asked or expected to do so at this moment. My body is making decisions for me, regrettably ones which are undesired, unanticipated and unwelcome.
I am hurting, I am broken, I am lost, I am overwhelmed. My pain is intense, my head spinning, my heart racing, my breath shallow. I may be in recovery and deserving of healing, but I am not even close right now. Know that. Understand that. Honor that. Remember that.