Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Still Seeking Balance and Grace

If you can believe this, my family thinks I’m too impatient and my expectations are too high for how far along this recovery should be. I feel broken and am concluding that the brain diminishment/damage is permanent. They argue that it’s only been four months when we were warned that it could take a year or two for full energy to return. Kearney, in particular, asserts that it takes time for the brain to readapt itself and to grow new pathways. These positions all have merit but they don’t feel right. The limitations are real and, well, limiting. In conversation yesterday (and follow-up email), a friend who shares the death of a mother at a young age pointed out that Humpty-Dumpty was broken and I’m not like that, only reconfigured. Yesterday I also learned that the anniversary of my mother’s death in 1970 is the same day that John’s father died fifty years ago. And Elvis Presley’s birthday, he told me. We all have stories that shape us, and shape our worlds.

Balance is hard to achieve. It’s a goal worth shooting for, so that’s what I do, along with renewing my focus on patience and finding grace in the midst of this uncertainty. Some days bring more success than others. Today’s another new one, so I get to start all over again and seek it anew. May today go better than yesterday did here and in all of your lives as well.


  1. You are absolutely allowed to feel how you feel today--there have to be some valleys or we won't recognize the peaks. And I know that because this recent experience was so enormous, it's easy to believe that EVERYTHING you feel is tied to it. But don't discount the possibility that all you are really feeling is that slightly depressed feeling I sometimes get when I've floated around too long "off schedule"--you might just be getting nabbed by the "free floating anxiety" bug that sometimes grabs us when our routine disappears over holidays or vacations.

    "And now for something completely different" (yes, we've indulged in watching some Monty Python episodes recently): Just seeing what this poor fellow ( had to endure recently, and knowing that, well, at least THIS didn't happen to me this week (at least not yet), made me feel better. Maybe it'll have somewhat the same effect on you.

    I'm madly sending good thoughts your way down Green Street as I write this. L

  2. Hey there, Tina,

    I'm here via google alerts, and had my very own meningioma removed August 26th (frontal lobes). (I guess this is not the post to follow-up on, but I wanted to make sure you actually see the comment, I hope you don't mind.)

    I just skipped around your blog a bit and though I don't know most details of your story, there's a lot that sounds familiar. You know, not realizing all the weird stuff you experience are actually symptoms of a brain tumour, being impatient with recovery, that kind of thing. And seriously, who'd ever think they'd have a brain tumour to begin with?

    Anyway, I just wanted to wish you (or both of us maybe) good luck as we go on recovering and finding our old/new selves.