Frustration wordcloud

Lighten Up, Kid!

You know the warnings on some prescriptions that say: “Do not take this medication while operating heavy equipment.”

I would like to have the following warning sticker for those of us trying to recover from a brain injury:

Mature female student looking confused in class

Copyright Monkey Business — Fotolia.com

“HALT: If you are Hungry, Angry. Lonely or Tired!”

I admit that, because a brain injury survivor, I am normally angry, lonely or tired (except when I’m sleeping).

I have never worked so hard in my life, trying to get better …but, when I’m being realistic, I accept that it’s a process, not a destination.

Yesterday, at visual therapy, I felt like such a failure.

I just couldn’t get the exercises right.

Granted, I had probably pushed myself too hard that morning and the appointment was at 2 p.m. That’s way too close to my self-imposed limitation of 4 p.m. for any activities outside my home.

My friends and family remind me that when I’m frustrated it is MY expectations of myself that are frustrating me.

I would never be so hard on anyone else, and especially not on a fellow brain injury survivor.

But in my mind, if I was able to do something once before, I should be able to check it off the recovery list.

I have lost count of how often doctors, therapist and my support group members have told me: In brain injury, consistency is elusive, at best, and that pushing myself is self-defeating.

Trying to do too much, which has always  part of my ADD personality,  is no longer an option for me.

Lighten up, kid!