Monday, November 15, 2010

The Man Handbook

Recently, I went back to work full time. Well, kind of. It only lasted a week. I've had it in my head that as soon as I get back to normal life (pre-surgery life that is) everything will be alright. As if the tumor doesn't exist; that everything has just been a crazy unimaginable dream.

The truth is that it's not a dream. I do have limits. I had to cut back my hours because I was so exhausted I couldn't function properly. After leaving work on the second day of going full time I took a nap and slept for five hours. That was a bit of a wake up call. At the most recent appointment with my speech therapist I mentioned my new full time schedule and my exhaustion. She looked at me wide eyed and smiled. She told me that almost all of the patients who've had my type of surgeries and head trauma are not back to full time work after six months. When she told me that, I felt a lot better. It's hard to know what you're supposed to be capable of. I don't know what the guidelines are, other than listening to my body and even then I sometimes get mixed signals.

I feel like my brain is constantly fuzzy. It's the difference between running in water or running on land. I feel like everyone else is jogging at the gym, and I'm slugging through waist deep waves. My mind is so exhausted. I have to do double or triple the amount of mental work, in order to get the same result.

There's so many things that I want to do, but I don't have the cognitive ability. Sometimes, I feel like I'm floating, and even though I might be in a crowded room my mind can be completely vacant. I get overloaded and my whole brain shuts down. It's like I'm taking a page out of The Man Handbook. The chapter titled, "What to do when your wife/girlfriend/mother/ie any woman asks you what you're thinking." I guess, I'm now more manly. I can honestly say that 40% of the day, my mind is solidly blank. That is something that I've never experienced before.

I remember the doctors telling me that I will continue to physically heal for over a year. They also said that as the healing continues it's a bell curve. I'm now riding the back side, headed down. It scares me to think that I will probably never be the same as I was before the surgeries. That's life I guess. Constantly changing. I've never been that much of a scholar, but I don't like having my options limited. I hope that in six more months, I'll be able to look back at this post and smile, wishing I could still enjoy a blank mind from time to time. Who knows, maybe the blankness is a good thing, like meditating.

By the way, here's a photo of my new hair. It's fun that I don't have to do anything when I get out of the shower, no comb, no products, and no tools. It's just me and my hair. Pretty simple. One note, this photo was taken at a cocktail party and I have a strapless dress on. Sorry it looks kind of questionable.


  1. Wow! You are just so grounded. I feel like there is nothing that would knock you down and keep you there. I do think you should be gentle with yourself and take it wasy as the doctors suggested.
    And your hair deserves another WOW! I LOVE IT! You look so radiant and sofisticated, yet playful! Not many women can pull it off, but you are ROCKIN' that hair. I LOVE IT!!
    LOVe, Sarah B

  2. I agree with sarah b... I dig the hair! And taking a page out of your book, my household is switching from white rice to quinoa. Go brain power! Go Jessie! ~karen g

  3. You look great! So beautiful!

  4. Great to see you guys on today. Congrats again! So exciting.



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