Concussions

No More Excuses

There were so many times throughout the course of this journey that I gave up. I quit my workouts, and I quit doing my therapy exercises when my sessions ran out. I could have kept them up at home, but I used the excuse I had been given by my Occupational Therapist.  I was working so that was good enough. 

I got lazy. I was exhausted. I didn’t feel like pushing myself, even marginally. 

I was tired of feeling awful, but didn’t think I had the energy or conviction to fight harder for myself, for my family. 

I started a workout routine last year. I was actually consistent at it for almost four months! I gradually built up my strength, stamina, and cardio. I was up to 14 minutes on the stationary bike. I was lifting five-pound weight while doing arm, leg, and ab exercises. I was feeling great about my achievements, and I knew I had more energy because of it. 

That was until life and work got ridiculously busy. I was stretched way beyond my capacity. My symptoms took over and I crashed. I threw all the work I had built up with my exercising out the proverbial window. Instead of scaling back to the basics of my workouts or giving myself some time off to recouperate, I allowed my mind and body to quit. I didn’t actually pick it back up again until a couple of months ago. It’s been a year. 

I was too tired. I was too emotional. I would never be able to manage “normal” life again. My concussion ran my life. 

Then I hit the moment when I felt “sick and tired of being sick and tired”. I gathered up the gumption to continue looking for solutions to recover from this injury. 

Thankfully, the Lord continues to guide me to more doctors and therapies. I come up with new bite sized ideas that I can work with that allows me to achieve goals in various aspects of my life. 

We can be our own worst enemies. We can hold ourselves back from the healing God desires for our lives. I know that a brain injury is life changing. I’m living proof. However, there’s a reason it happened and it’s not all for bad. 

When I was younger, I would gripe about all my infirmities. If I told you everything I was going through back then, you would probably understand my attitude about it. I could have allowed myself to live in the remorse and grief of what had happened and let it define who I was. 

But that’s not what life is about or what God intends. Sometimes we must suffer so that we can grow and love more. By our sufferings, we can see those around us and understand their aching hearts. We can give them hope that they don’t have to be stuck in their situation. 

The most inspirational people to me are the ones who learn to embrace their disabilities for good and use it to impact greater change for others. 

To be honest, I did not want to help others with brain injuries as I was overwhelmed with my own. I wanted to get over this as quickly as possible and act like it never happened. I wanted my life back. I wanted my marriage back to the way it was. I didn’t want to help anyone. I wanted to run and hide until it was over and then get on with life. 

Thankfully, that’s not what the Lord intended. 

I was sitting with a friend that I had made while in therapy at a local hospital. She had a concussion the same year as me. We were both still struggling in our own ways, but did well to challenge and encourage each other. She was great at connecting with other concussion victims. This convicted me.

After one of our breakfast dates, God touched my heart. I felt the conviction and knew that I needed to change my attitude. I had to surrender the fight to be healed for purely selfish reasons. I had to accept where I was in the moment and start looking around to others that needed someone to understand them. Someone to encourage them forward. People started popping into Michael’s and my life that either had a concussion or knew a close relative that did. We began sharing what had worked for us and empathizing their struggles. 

It was then that I realized why God hadn’t chosen to heal me yet. There was work to be done. Here I was fighting for healing so that I could get on to doing “greater things” for Him. All the while, He wanted me to be reaching the people I was now surrounded by. Ones who were desperate for His love, compassion, and understanding. I surrendered my plans and allowed Him to lead me. 

Then the idea of the blog formulated. My heart and compassion grew. Doors opened to a therapy I desperately needed. Things all started lining up. I’m working towards healing, but I know it’s still going to be a bit of process. 

Now, I must admit, I’m enjoying life. I’m back to finding creative little ways to be able to do more. I’m starting to lift weights again. I’m taking some of the house responsibilities off of Michael. I’m connecting more with friends and family. All within little stages that slightly push my limits. 

Are you allowing your disabilities to constrain you? Do you find that you are getting comfortable with where you’re at? It’s time to push forward friend. It’s time to challenge yourself to do a bit more.

Look at your situation. Are there people in your life that you can relate to that you never did before? Do others need encouragement and a challenge from someone that understands them? Rise up. Do what you can with what you have. In time, you’ll be able to do more and therefore make a greater impact. You’ve got this!   

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