First, HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MY WONDERFUL FATHER!!!!!!!
Second, I'd like to preface my story below with saying this; my aunt, a licensed psychologist and life coach, told me early on in my recovery to keep a journal so I could remember my stories and see just how far I had come. I knew she was a wise woman and trusted her advice so I began to blog, a public journal. I did not do this to draw attention to myself or make others feel bad for me! Instead, I decided to share my journey because I so desperately sought someone my own age to relate to! In my warped brain at the time, any brain injury survivor would NOT do. Even if they had many of the same struggles, it HAD to be an aneurysm survivor, specifically, to truly relate at the level I so longed for! Doctors graciously told me people just don't live through the magnitude of aneurysm I survived. Well aware of how annoyingly persistent I am, they tried to offer me a more realistic view! I decided that just in case anyone felt the way I did they could, by the Grace of God, find me and read my unfiltered story, just the way I wished I had been able to find. Of course, I have since healed enough to realize that any aneurysm is traumatic no matter the degree of rupture and any brain injury no matter how you sustained it is also very traumatic. I no longer have to find someone with the "exact same experience" to be able to relate to people again. Healing through my own journey has also taught me that we all share many struggles in life equally as traumatizing and life altering in every way! Just last night, we had a honor of eating dinner with an old friend. She left her good state job, with its many benefits, to answer God's call and translate the Bible for unreached people groups, many of whom have no formal written language, in Papa New Guinea. As were were catching up she was talking about her first few years in a new country, unfamiliar customs and all new situations; everything was different and had to be done differently. Not usually a "nap taker" she required daily naps in order to carry on! She talked about the insane fatigue of having to relearn ways of doing things in her environment now! She too had to learn how to relate to people in her new situation! Yeah, I get that! There are still some people I find it impossible to relate to in a meaningful way but this I recognize as simply being human!
Now, telling me 8.5 years ago that I read at a 5th grade level was probably generous seeing as I just messed up an easy "three step" recipe because I couldn't process all the steps!!!! I'm thankful though for doctors kind enough to exaggerate the truth for a half paralyzed, 25 year old aneurysm patient drooling out of the left side of her mouth, totally incapable of understanding or dealing with what just happened to her! I'm also glad I have a BS in Elementary Education (that I never had the opportunity to really to in the professional world but use every day in my 'real world') and can remember that if I just broke it down sentence by sentence I could probably handle it! Step one, put 2.5 sleeves of crackers in a zip lock bag a crush into fine pieces. This roughly breaks down to find crackers, find Ziplock back, find meat tenderizer to use to break the crackers, now what was I supposed to do with that Ziplock???????Next, the "normal brain" may call mixing 3 different things together then moving it to a pan only one step but NOT my brain. Combine is a few steps (after you locate each item and figure out how you are getting them into the bowl, oh yeah, a bowl. find an appropriate sized bowl), stir is a step then pour is another step!!! The last step in the recipe simply said "bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. That simple, single step to me is several also. Turn oven on, open door, put pan on desired rack, close door, and most importantly, SET TIMER so when you forget you are baking (in three minutes, before even leaving the kitchen) it beeps at you until you acknowledge it!! You get the picture; and this was a pretty "good brain day" for me (I'm not kidding)!!!!!!!!!! I suppose I was a bit more tired than I even realized since I tried this new to me recipe on a day I was at the busy library all morning! I know better!!!
It's a good life though!
PS- the toffee bars were actually edible and actually tasted pretty good too....here is the link to the "easy" recipe if you want to try them, for "normal people" it truly would be easy!
Toffee Ritz Bars Recipe