Back to work

Work in progress

Today I’m going into the office for the first time in over a week. I’ve still got a cough, but I can’t put this off anymore. Plus, I really need to get active again. All this sitting and lying down and recovering is getting on my nerves.

Should be interesting. Things should be quiet, because most folks are away at a big conference. It’s a good way to get back into the swing of things.

I also have my work cut out for me in updating my skills. The one thing that keeps me going, is the idea that I will not have to be stuck in this situation forever – and I know the direction I am headed in. I have a number of really key things to learn, which I was starting to delve into just before my TBI in 2004, and I’m still burdened with a lot of old confusion and frustration that I associate with those things, because the last time I tried to learn them, I was so out of it and so confused and turned around, I couldn’t manage much of anything.

My brain has definitely changed, since that time. I don’t have the same stamina I used to have, where I would spend hours upon hours on a single sticky problem and be able to stay focused and intent on what was in front of me. I need more rest now. I also have a different way of learning — it’s not that old way of looking at something and then being able to just do it… now I have to really understand what I’m looking at, and I need a lot more practice, to get things.

Or maybe I have always been this way, and now I realize how I really need to learn. Back in the day — to be perfectly honest — I did a lot of side-stepping thorny issues and running for cover — and running away from things that didn’t make immediate sense to me. I faked my way through an awful lot of situations, and in a lot of cases, I just got lucky — without any real understanding of what I was doing… just some mimicry of what I’d seen others do. My approach before was far from perfect, but I managed to sneak by, under the wire, because who would have guessed I was having as many cognitive issues as I was? And anyway, it was easy to keep under cover in the uber-geek realm, because, well, there were a lot of inscrutable, unapproachable folks in the ranks, and compared to some, I looked absolutely sane and serene.

Now things are very, very different for me — I have a better understanding of my own limitations, and I have a better understanding of what I need to do to overcome them. It’s daunting, but I’ve gotta keep at it. Because I need to make a real and substantive change in my life, and I cannot stay where I am indefinitely.

So, there’s my motivation. Plus, the new learning, the new ways of learning — taking things in smaller pieces and really, really focusing on them till I understand how they really, truly work, and doing them over and over and over again, until I can do them with my eyes closed and backwards — it keeps me on my toes and it makes me feel better… not only about my work, but about my brain and my life in general. The job I am in now is mind-numbing and just a little soul-sucking. There’s nothing like learning and mastering new material to brighten my day and make me feel human again.

So, it’s back to work for me — on multiple fronts.


Author: brokenbrilliant

I am a long-term multiple (mild) Traumatic Brain Injury (mTBI or TBI) survivor who experienced assaults, falls, car accidents, sports-related injuries in the 1960s, '70s, '80s, and '90s. My last mild TBI was in 2004, but it was definitely the worst of the lot. I never received medical treatment for my injuries, some of which were sports injuries (and you have to get back in the game!), but I have been living very successfully with cognitive/behavioral (social, emotional, functional) symptoms and complications since I was a young kid. I’ve done it so well, in fact, that virtually nobody knows that I sustained those injuries… and the folks who do know, haven’t fully realized just how it’s impacted my life. It has impacted my life, however. In serious and debilitating ways. I’m coming out from behind the shields I’ve put up, in hopes of successfully addressing my own (invisible) challenges and helping others to see that sustaining a TBI is not the end of the world, and they can, in fact, live happy, fulfilled, productive lives in spite of it all.

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