Days pass and times change, it seems as if only yesterday happened, but yet it is now almost five years later. Sometimes time seemingly stands still. I know it does seem to do just that for my high school senior. She is counting the days minutes and hours until she is in a different stage of her life. I remember doing the same thing, but for me the waiting was more fun, much less stress, and a time to figure a few things out.
Sometimes I think this can be so painful as it is for her, her unusual circumstances at school have made things so much more difficult. Just as the unusual medical circumstances that have happened in my life. Both of us are so similar, both of us are learning to be tougher, both of us are unwilling to settle for what we don't deserve.
Respect, care, compassion, and more I am so glad that she knows that these things are mandatory to expect, and to share. I sometimes will find that she forgets this. For the most part she stays true to herself. I wonder, if desperation would fall upon her and if she would be strong enough to make it through what ever would be hanging the dark cloud over her.
I have been told that I am too cheery, I always am looking for the best. I frustrate Jason by the answers to his questions. He will ask me how I am doing, he can tell when I hurt. He asks me this already knowing that I am hurting, then wants me to verbally validate what he is already seeing my body and eyes present. He is frustrated by my lack of brut honesty on the subject. I most commonly have answered his question with an I doing better than I was, or an I am alright.
These answers have become a huge frustration for him. I don't understand why he needs my verbal validation for what he already knows to be true. My perspective and my focus is and has been to stay mentally healthy. To not go out and try to kill myself, to make it through the day, to really focus on what good things I have instead of the pain that I feel all of the time. For me being better than I was is good. If I can hear myself say that I am alright, that I am better than I was, these things don't seem so bad.
I can understand his frustration, really I can. Looking at me he, and everyone else I guess can tell that there is something wrong with me. I can too I guess if I were to look in the mirror when I have gotten worn out from the pain. I don't have any sparkle to my eyes, my brows sink in to my eyes, I loose color, not that I had that much to begin with, my posture is shifted, and I have difficulty moving, standing or doing anything. Just the speed of my thinking, my clarity, and my movement each alone could tell someone.
Many times the problem is not only that I don't want to hear myself say that I am myserable, that the pain is so intense that I can hardly stand it, but that I am so tired, and so foggy, that my mind has actually blocked the pain from the front of my thinking. When prompted, for a more complete and serious answer, in which I take a few moments to delebriate and assess my condition, this fog will subside, and the reality of the pain will begin to take hold.
I know that most people aren't able to do this, I am very lucky that I have had the mental blocking skills already developed to some degree to help me deal with this. Prior to the day of my auto accident where the very old man took his time to turn to look from side to side to check the traffic, where his foot got ahead of his eyes, and jetted out in front of my little red Mary Kay car. I had already developed these skills to deal with the PTSD that I had/have.
It does become a detriment however, I have found. I do know that since my auto accident, I can no longer remember peoples names with ease. There faces or names if seen will cause me to stop, but the clarity that was once there before, is gone. I had worked hard to develop the skill of remembering people's names, and where I knew them from. I don't have that anymore, I am starting over.
I see the frustration in peoples faces when they realize that I don't remember them. How do you explain in five seconds or less that I was in an accident...blah blah blah... GRRR! It is so frustrating for me not because of the loss of the skill. But the skill provided a validation to those around me, the people that I met, wheather briefly, or had a major interaction with, that they were important to me. How many times do you go through your day, with no validation of importance, no acknowlegement that you actually mean something to someone. That you are more than a number, that you are worthy, and treasured.
It was a skill that I had worked hard to perfect, that gave a gift larger than you can hold. I loved making those who were with in contact to whatever degree with me that they were indeed important. I knew this from many years of being a discounted person, a person who others saw no real value in what I did. I have never been a person with one of THOSE jobs, one of THOSE degree's one of THOSE types of social standing.
I have been around many of those people, those people make up a portion of my friends today. My friends may have THOSE things, but they see ME! They are around me because of how I have made them feel, because I see them. I don't see what they do, or what they have. If they lost it all, I wouldn't go away. These are the people that are still with me through this crazyness. They are the type of people you want in your life.
While being a waitress, being the shoe shine girl, being a farm hand, fast food worker, and more, I learned that many people saw you as what you did, not for who you were. Their mistake. I could feel the invaidation, that is the type of feeling that can sink a person's soul. It frustrated mine, it pushed me, not to be the type of person who had to have all of that to feel alright about myself, but to be strong enough that other's perceptions would never cloud my self worth. I hope for my high school senior's sake that she can keep a strong sense of value and hold it close, while encouraging and validating others. She too knows what it feels like to be a discounted person.
A quote by Frank Sinatra shared tonight on the David Letterman show, by a friend of his, and I paraphrase, "If you own something that you can not give away, then you do not own it, it is the one that owns you." If a person feels as if they are of value, but keeps it to themselves, uses it for themselves, than, really do they have value? I wonder.
Going through this receient recovery period has been difficult to retain this I must say, but through guarding what I say, what I spend my days focused on, and making the most of what I have each moment, this has been what keeps me going. I've got lots of blessings in my life. One of the greatest blessings is laying beside me with his hand on my knee.
I hope for her sake and the sake of those around her that she holds on to what is dear to her by sharing all she can to benefit those around her. My greatest friends have this gift too! I love being around them, not for the degree's that they hold, or the money that they earn, or the club that they belong to. I love being around them because I can help them and they can help me, we are there for each other, and while acknowledging flaws choose to look at each other's gifts.
I am blessed! Beyond belief, I am better than I was!