Coming to Terms

At some point after a brain injury you will learn what happened. You will have to learn a different way of living or learn to adapt. It can be tough at first but it gets better.

Since I got my injury at a young age, my parents needed to explain to me what happened. Of course, they had to wait until I was old enough to understand.


Before that moment, I remember thinking to myself that something ‘wasn’t right with me.’ I had this feeling that there was something that made me different. When kids are growing up, being different can be a big deal.


When my parents decided it was time for me to know, my mind went blank. I don’t really remember what I thought or how I reacted. It was big news.


This news was tough to wrap my head around. I am sure it is no matter how old you are when you get your injury. There are a lot of questions going through your mind.


Fortunately for me, I was able to take time to process it. I was young enough when I initially heard the story that I kept adding details as I grew. This made for a much slower time to process.


My questions came with that and not all at once. The question that appeared a lot was why. Why did this happen to me?


I am still trying to answer that question, but I have to believe that there is some reason it happened. There is a reason for everything.


Accepting what has happened to you will take time. It requires time to fully process and understand what your life is going to look like now.


This takes time, and everyone will have their own timeline for it to happen. It is a huge change. Allow yourself to grieve and be mad.


After that step, you need to be willing to learn what your new life is going to look like.

Routines

Routines allow a busy life to feel more manageable. Sometimes, the unexpected happens when you have to learn how to cope with routines being messed with.

Routines are a considerable part of my life. I have my morning routine and my after work routine. When something happens to break them, it causes anxiety.


When I have quirks like this, it is difficult to differentiate if this is due to my environment or my brain injury. Either way, it causes me anxiety.


Coping


The ability to cope with broken routines are crucial. Life can be unpredictable, and this means that routines are going to be broken.


Routines allow me to get done what I need to get done. I am relatively busy in life. I am trying to balance a full-time job and getting my masters degree.


My routine doesn’t have an exact timeline, but I know that when I get home, I shower and then eat dinner. After that, I do school work, and if I have, I will read a chapter of my pleasure book.


On the days where I go to the gym, it is the same routine just pushed back a bit. I try hard not to freak out when something happens, and I can’t do as much school work as I wanted, or I go to bed a little later than planned.


I try hard to remind myself that it is one night. It won’t kill me or make me fail. I focus on relaxing and figuring out what I need to do for sure that night and what can slide for a day.


The ability to relax when a routine is broken is a critical part because if you just let anxiety get the best of you, life will be very miserable.


I am not perfect. I am still working on not getting all worked up when something unexpected takes priority. Taking steps toward being okay with broken routines are essential to living an overall happy life.


I have found that one thing that works for me is telling the people around me that if I can have notice as soon as possible, I am then able to plan. This allows me to readjust what I want to get done.


Routines are great, but life is full of unexpected events. Allowing them to come and go with ease is the key to a less stressful life.