Silence. Something I have grown accustomed to. I’ve learned to completely shut off emotions and feelings. Don’t judge me for this. Do you know what it’s like for the ones you love to leave you and give no answer for it? To not be able to communicate? To have unfiltered anger that can be triggered by anything? To have a “monster” that lives inside you now that will lash out at anything to “protect” you? To have to fish words out of the blank space that is now inside your mind? To be startled by every sound? To have to live through flashbacks that are hell on earth? To be told something and instantly forget? To not be able to handle certain sounds, lights and crowds because you will have a panic attack? It’s maddening. It’s exhausting.

So I have learned to enjoy the silence. I am an observer now. I observe and take in everything. Partially because I have to so I can understand what is going on and to give me time to process but also because you can find all the truths you need when you just observe. You become much wiser when you are going through the recovery process from a traumatic brain injury. I woke up from my coma as a 4-6yr old. I had to relearn everything about life, social norms, daily activities, etc. I also got to see the world through a new pair of eyes and to experience the unfortunate judgements of those who are scared of the unknown. I learned how to cope with the uneducated who would harass me and follow me into stores then laugh in my face as I tried to explain my situation because on the outside I look “normal” so there should be no reason for me to use a handicap pass. I developed a new layer of toughness to be able to handle these situations. I am grateful for my situation because I think over the past four years it has developed me into a much stronger and caring person but I also hate it because it seems no matter what I am alone.

I am alone because no matter who is with me I feel I will never be able to communicate how I am or what I’m feeling. I am alone because after June 11 and what unraveled in my life following the wreck it’s hard to let down my guard and to trust. I am still in a survival mode protecting myself from anymore harm which plays into my PTSD and puts it into overdrive. It’s overwhelming. Where do I go from here? Who do I trust? How will I know I can trust again? So many questions going through my mind on an endless loop. My mind is already fuzzy enough due to my injury but life sure has made it into an even bigger mess. So how do I continue to move forward with my life? Well that’s a very easy question to answer.. God.

My faith is the only thing that has pulled me through. You don’t have to believe in God to be able to deal with the struggles of your life but you do need to have faith in something. Without faith and the hope that it will get better you will remain down on the ground where pain and sadness want to keep you. Pain, sadness and confusion are all the devils tools to use against you and play tricks on your mind. He wants you to feel hopeless and forgotten so that way you are much easier to manipulate and become his. Don’t give him that power. There is hope for you no matter what cards life has dealt you. The only thing you need is a strong mind and mental toughness. The most powerful tool you will ever need is your mind. Yes my mind isn’t at its peak anymore but I still have my fierceness that I acquired from being an athlete. I have approached every obstacle that has stood in my way the same way I would have when I stood on that mound and faced my next victim aka the batter. Nothing and no one is going to beat me. I will win this battle. I will strike you out. image

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