In the early days of recovery I sometimes felt like I was “going crazy” or was so “broken” that nothing would make me whole again. Overtime with wonderful supportive people around me; a good psychologist; and Meds I find that I am able to somehow find the strength to keep going despite;
My Reduced interest in previously enjoyed activities
My limitations (energy, attention span, information processing) in the early days often kept me from doing things that I once found such joy in – such as; going to a movie, out to eat, meeting friends for coffee, shopping, gardening , ironing my bed sheets (yes, to this day I still miss the ironing of sheets).
At night dreams that caused me to wake up panicked throughout the night, my face and pillow damp from tears – that I do not recall crying and no matter how hard I try I can never remember the dream . I have no memory of the accident; a friend suggested that perhaps during my sleep I am somehow recalling the accident [to this day I do not know what causes me to feel that way in my sleep, and I still have these experiences, thankfully not as frequent].
Easily distracted to the point that I forget if I have eaten or not; brushed my teeth. I try to avoid noisy places and areas with too my people. Recently I was all proud to be boiling water for some pasta – (Mr. G was home working on something and after much discussion agreed to let me use the stove while he was outside) all was going well. Then little Dolce needed to be let out – I recall thinking I can do this … so I went to let him out , Dolce took a little longer and was pulling to go for a walk – so off we went. I returned back to the house to a frantic Mr. G holding a nearly boiled dry pot. Needless to say I’m still not to use the stove unless someone is in the immediate area. Thankfully he was here to check on me and keep me safe.
Today the frequency of these feelings has been lessening with Meds [discovering the right Meds has been a very bumpy road], identify triggers and removing them or myself from the situation has been beneficial to having some sort of life.
Being around moving cars, loud people/noises and not being able to do things that once came so easily.
The realization of how my injuries impacted my ability to carry out basic day to day functions brought with it another revelation – my future career plans are gone. Without a career, what future do I have? Things started to not look very promising for me; and that was the beginning of a downward swirl. I experienced my first complete melt down around May 2007. (Yes the first, there were 3 more serious ones over the next couple of years and many small but equally scary ones in between).
What I want to share with others;
The emotional damage is often as great if not greater than the physical damage. As the bandages from physical wounds begin to come off; the scars covered by clothing; people start to look at the person like they are whom they were prior to their detour in life. These people begin to return back to their lives – the” novelty” of an injured friend or loved one wearing off (sounds cold – BUT it is true). And the person finds themselves alone, scared and unsure of what the future holds.
|The words above belong to author William Styron, and they describe his first episode of major depression.|
My best suggestion (I’m not a professional )– when I have been the one going out of control – what we found would work at times was someone speaking softly to me .. this would often calm me enough to get me to go and lay down.
If you feel like you are going “crazy” … know you are not alone. Speak to someone and the sooner you are able to connect with the right Psychologist , you will be on your way to a much better place.