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Finding out the reality of my condition after my TBI and PTSD was the hardest realization ever experienced by me. To me, it didn’t seem like anything was really different or that I was affected by the brain injury all that much.
I hid behind the haze of drugs and it was what I blamed for my failures and lack of ability. Both in my thinking and motor skills, I wasn’t able to figure out things as easily and my fine motor skills were lacking. Confusion and loss of reasoning and logic plagued me but I told myself it’s because of my drug use. Not saying it didn’t play its part but there was something more that was causing the failed memory and ability to be happy. I started to realize how my behavior and short temper were becoming a problem.
Read more: My Values of Spirituality
My wife left and took my 3 sons with her and my devastation brought some clarity to my reality. I got myself off of the drugs and started to live a healthier lifestyle. I was still confounded by my inability and confused forgetfulness.
Wow, it really came to a painful shock having no drug use to blame for the problems with my thinking and reasoning abilities.
I still couldn’t remember things from one moment to the next. I would be having a conversation with someone and would have to ask them “what was I saying again?”. I had always been quite coordinated and able do almost anything that required a steady hand, like tying flies for fly fishing.
Now all of a sudden it seemed the flies were tied pretty well until I put them beside some of the ones I had tied prior to my accident. When in fact they were not any better than the ones my 5 yr old had tied and maybe even not as good.
So much in my world suddenly became a painful awareness seeing how I could no longer blame it on drugs. I was clean and sober and no more excuses for me to use. It was me and I was no longer the man I used to be. I was alone unemployed and barely existing. I had hardly left my garage in 6 years and it seemed like it had only been a few months. Things got bad and things got worse as I had lost everything and everyone and soon both my houses would be foreclosed on.
Read more: How I Overcame 10 Years of Opiate Addiction
The shock helped to get me to try and prove to myself I could be that man I thought I was. I, however, was lacking in ability and thought processing was distorted. I couldn’t do anything I used to be able to do and finding work was impossible. I couldn’t make myself go out into the world. I had crippling anxiety being around people and being anywhere there were more than 2 or 3 people. I was paranoid and it seemed like people were talking about me and making fun of me.
As I wasn’t able to get work or even apply for any assistance of any kind because I would have to go to crowded places and just couldn’t make myself do it, I lost the house and was living on the streets. Depressed lonely and broken bibeasbonly, a shadow of the man I used to be. It’s been about 16: years since my accident and not much has changed. I’m alone, homeless and I hide in the darkness of my soul waiting for what I don’t know. I have declined physically and emotionally I am dead.
I have gotten some of my coordination back and I can remember a little better. I am able to understand and my logic seems to be improved. The futility of my existence has less effect on my moods as I now believe I can get better and there is some reason why when I was in my coma and taken off life support I didn’t die. I instead woke up and 3 times on the other side I was able to be among the living. There has to be a reason why I am alive and I need to find that reason.