The bathroom ceiling looks fantastic – Woo Hoo!

Here’s how my bathroom ceiling now looks:

No, it’s not a typo. My bathroom ceiling is no longer gray with patches of brown. The paint’s not peeling off it anymore, threatening to send chips down on the bathers below. It’s completely white. Sealed. Clean and crisp. As it was intended to be.

I really did a great job with the painting, if I say so, myself. I was systematic, deliberate, detail-oriented, but I didn’t obsess over things that used to derail me — like getting the painter’s tape lined up exactly right along the edge of the drop-cloth and the ceiling.

I’m really proud of myself — even over this “simple” job. Last spring, I did a lot of painting to deal with winter leaks in my roof that messed up the ceilings in a couple of bedrooms, and it was a laborious and painstaking process. I did okay, but it was a loooonnnnngggg job that lasted twice as long as it could have.

I think it was just lack of practice that slowed me down — and also having no energy from a very rough stint at work, my spouse’s car accident which knocked them out of commission for months and turned our home life pretty much upside-down, not to mention how hard last winter was and how much work I had to constantly do to just keep up with everything. Yes, there was plenty to slow me down, this past spring.

I’ve done other painting jobs in the house — the ceiling of the kitchen has a dark, peeling spot from leaks dribbling down from the bathroom above. That bathroom has always been an issue – it had spongy walls when we bought it, and it’s just always been an issue. We have a second full bath with a shower stall upstairs as well, but that’s been out of commission for years — the toilet seal leaked, the tiles popped out of the shower stall (and little shards of tile got into my diabetic spouse’s foot (we’re still pulling them out, as they work their way out, years later). We haven’t had the money to fix it all.

If I hadn’t fallen in 2004, these would not be issues. I could have kept my job. I could have cashed in the full value of the bonus shares I’d earned. I would not have spent all our money on … sorry, I can’t remember exactly what I spent it on. All I know is, hundreds of thousands of dollars of savings and hard work ceased to be in our bank account, within a few years after my accident.

If I hadn’t fallen, not only would we have had the money to fix it all, but I would not have been derailed and unable to piece ideas together in a logical sequence. Even more debilitating than the lost money, is the lost executive functioning, where I was able to make plans and make decisions and take action in a logical fashion. After my fall, everything turned into a jumbled mess.

And yet, all my MRIs show nothing of interest to neurologists or doctors of other ilk.

It’s pretty cruel, how that goes.

Anyway, now I’m back doing things in my house that I used to do before I fell. I’m making repairs. I’m patching things up. And the bathroom ceiling looks amazing. Yesterday after I was done, I would just go into the bathroom and look up at my handiwork, loving the smooth glossy finish that caught the light. It’s so satisfying. So amazing. After such a long, long time of looking at gray and brown splotches, this is magical.

Even more magical is the satisfaction I feel at being able to once again do things that I had thought I’d lost for good — or couldn’t actually remember ever having had. So, I’ll enjoy this while it lasts. This painting thing went extremely well, and I’m going to make the most of my appreciation while it lasts.

One of the weird things about how my brain works, is that I lose sight of things I have done before — especially the things I’ve done well. Life with a Swiss cheese memory is definitely interesting… and sometimes it takes me a while to remember past experiences and accomplishments that went really well. It’s not amnesia, exactly — just a very “reluctant” recall.

I may have done something a thousand times before, and I may have done it really well, but I don’t recall. So, I assume I need to re-learn how to do it. And then when it goes well, I’m elated. Overjoyed. Simply because I’ve performed in a manner true to my level of ability.

Funny how that works — but at least I have joy and elation. In some ways, it probably makes my life a lot more exciting and rewarding than it might otherwise be — if I could remember in excruciating detail everything I ever did and said. That would be unpleasant, I’m sure.

Anyway, I’m riding high on the results of my work. My spouse is delighted, as well.

It just looks so great, compared to before.

And with that,I shall start my work week.


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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