Sunday, March 29, 2009

An Entry From My Journal -3/28/09

There is something interesting going on inside of me, I think in my soul. First, I need to recognize/admit to how anxious I must have been feeling.

Some days my stomach felt like there was a "pit" in it; a heaviness. I know I've been  struggling with depression and there were days - that is how I felt internally - depressed.

My doctor and therapy appointments were good - I was progressing! But why was I feeling so empty inside?

The last couple of appointments have been different. I left them with a greater sense of hope and expectancy.

Throughout this journey, I know I've had hope: God's hope and His presence, His provision and His care. I am - and have been - completely in His hands.

NOT that my doctors and therapists have been hopeless - because they haven't been. They've been supportive, encouraging and helpful. BUT the last couple of appointments I have felt hope had been extended to me. There is light at the end of the tunnel, and no - it is not a train.

There is talk about and a process to getting back to work; to driving again; and even to riding a bike again.

I did believe I was going to be able to do these things again, but in some ways I think I was beginning to doubt those possibilities.

What am I feeling inside of me this morning? I am feeling hope, happiness, peace, satisfaction, gratefulness and joy.

One of my favorite recording artists is Chris Tomlin. I appreciate the words of his songs. This weekend I have designated as "Chris Tomlin Weekend." I am predominantly, if not completely, listening to his music. I am also memorizing a group of verses from the Scriptures: Psalm 37:1-8. I have memorized up to verse 6. Not bad for someone who had a major brain injury and has struggles with memory issues.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Have a Nice Journey!

Those were the words from a gentleman gathering his possessions that went through the x-ray contraption that my possessions went through at Sacramento International Airport.

I was preparing to board a flight to Southern California to attend a conference in early 2008. The thing is that I found the man's greeting interesting. I know that numerous people have extended greetings for a 'nice trip' or 'nice flight,' but I don't think ever for a 'nice journey.'

Those words have remained with me for quite awhile, because they were so apropos. We're really on a journey, aren't we? That particular trip was actually going to equip me with important tools for the journey that God had me on.

Journeys are interesting. I remember taking some as a child with my family, and really thinking we were lost. It was a tad frightening for my young mind to comprehend at times; but my parents - my father in particular - were always full of words of reassurance.

The past nine months have held an unexpected leg of my journey - being hit by a car; experiencing a coma and various physical hurts, aches, and pains, challenges with my memory and physical limitations; rest stops; filling of the fuel tank; laughter and tears. It has been a tad frightening at times - but my Heavenly Father in particular - has been extending words of hope, encouragement and reassurance.

Honestly though, I haven't always taken those words to heart. Over the past few weeks, I have felt physically not well (a touch of the flu maybe?); I've been weary; I've been discouraged and even depressed.

I don't like to share those things, because so much good has happened that I feel selfish. I should be grateful for all the good, all the healing, and for all the encouragement I have received.

I am grateful, but I am recognizing, too, that there are hard times.

This weekend was a positive one: appointments were positive, I had some very good conversations with friends, I felt physically better, I got to watch basketball, and the University of Washington men's basketball team made it into the NCAA playoffs: March Madness!

I don't have a date set to go back to work yet and that's okay, but we're definitely moving in the right direction. I've struggled with 'how long' I feel everything has taken: nine months. (I don't think I'd do very well as a pregnant woman.)

People are constantly encouraging me that my progress has been going well and has gone quickly. I know I don't fully comprehend how seriously hurt I was (maybe because I was unconscious during a lot of it). I am trying to take those encouragements to heart and realize that God has done a lot in a 'relatively' short amount of time.

I have a follow-up appointment with a doctor next week where we might get a handle on when I can return to work. A couple of doctors I met with last week were very encouraged with my progress.

Regarding the road map for journeys, there are rarely times that one doesn't experience delays, detours, and distractions; but they then get to their destination and often with added memories and stories to tell.

There will be a lot to share about this leg of the journey: God's faithfulness, love, care, provision, and presence will fill in a lot of the blanks.

Friday, March 6, 2009

What a Week!

Do you ever have stuff going on in your life, you keep walking through it, and then you hit some milestones and you hadn't realized how much it was weighing on you? That was my week. A couple of things took place that I knew would be coming at sometime, and I was completely exhausted when they were over.

The first was the sentencing hearing for the young woman who while driving her car, struck my friend, Kathy, and me while on our bikes.

On Monday, before the judge, the young woman, and a full courthouse, Kathy, Vickie, my sister Theresa, and I all read victim impact statements. The woman's mom, as well as a friend of her, and the young woman also read statements. The gal pleaded guilty and is now in jail for a year, as well as having a number of years probation.

It was a tremendous blessing to have my sister and brother-in-law, David, there with me. I love them so much and it was great to have their encouragement and support. I knew this day was coming, but it was still hard. I haven't gone through anything like that before. I was tired.

On Tuesday, I went to have some long-awaited neuropsych testing done. It was five hours of testing to get a gauge on where I am following the serious brain injury I had. (Next week I will go in to discuss the results with the doctor.) We should be able to gain some sort of idea when I may be able to return to work. This, too, was very tiring.

Some fun things took place this week, too: I made it to a golf driving range to hit golf balls with my friend's husband and son. Yes, it was evident that I haven't played golf in over a year. But the son and I did beat the dad in a putting competition we were having.

Last week I had the opportunity to get into a swimming pool. A friend and I used kick-boards to motor around the pool. It was a good thing I had a kick-board, as I wasn't very fast and I probably would have sunk. It really did feel great to be in the water.

Then today, another friend and I went on our weekly walk. We increased the length of our walk, about a half mile or so.

All these things communicate progress to me. At times it can feel like a long process (which it is), but then I am encouraged when I can grasp hold of some results.

Thanks for your continued prayer and love!