Healing Through Resiliency

HEALING THROUGH RESILIENCY

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COMMUNITY STORIES | 7.27.2017 | BY PAT

Me before my injury in 2012 at a collegiate track meet.

Me before my injury in 2012 at a collegiate track meet.

One Thursday night I went to bed before work, and woke up the following Wednesday in the ICU. Apparently, when going to meet friends, I slipped on some ice, fell and ended up with a temporal and occipital fracture, a subdural hematoma and a 6mm lateral shift in my brain. Truthfully, I have no idea what happened...and probably never will.

March 2015, days after my injury in the neuro-ICU, sitting up for the first time post-injury.

March 2015, days after my injury in the neuro-ICU, sitting up for the first time post-injury.

The hardest part of the healing process was dealing with the unknown. First, I had a long mental road to follow in order to heal my brain and regain my life skills. Honestly, the hardest part of healing was not knowing what happened during my accident. Step one of my healing journey was staying positive and trusting the process. Next, I had to understand that I would regain all I needed to. Last, I had to accept the setbacks as further learning opportunities.

In 2012, before my injury, at my college graduation dinner.

In 2012, before my injury, at my college graduation dinner.

For me, moving forward is about acceptance, positive thinking, and resilience. First, I have to accept that I will never know the unknown pieces of my accident or how I ever ended up getting hurt. Next, I need to remain positive about the fact that I am not essentially back to where I was before the accident. Resilience is key, as it helped me feel like I "beat" the accident and the injuries it caused, and moving forward I feel like am now a better person because of my resilience.

Me in before my injury in 2012 as the collegiate best time/race/conference champion.

Me in before my injury in 2012 as the collegiate best time/race/conference champion.

Meditation, specifically mindful meditation, has helped me to now find peace which was fleeting during my recovery. Meditation has also helped me to harness the power of my brain and the power within myself to ensure my healing journey never ends.

July 2015, after my injury, at my college room mate's wedding.

July 2015, after my injury, at my college room mate's wedding.

The best advice I can give is to trust the process and be thankful for every small victory. Each and every step along the path is closer to the goal.