Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Live & Learn

I started this post out as a list of lessons I have learned. I then, excessively elaborated on the very first one! So now, I suppose this has turned itself into a future mini series :o)


Throughout this journey, I have learned a great deal. I have so much more to learn, and always will, but in the meantime, I wanted to share some notes I have jotted down in the past few months ;o) These are just my own personal thoughts, and observations. Take them, or leave them, as you so choose.

Always revisit, and question your absolutes. 

As a recovering control freak, I had an awful lot of absolutes. I naively believed I understood the world around me, and in turn, I acted according to what I considered it to be. After the accident, I began to question everything, from the most important of issues, like life and death, to the smallest of things, like food selection. The world actually opened up, and became so incredibly vast. I quickly realized, I was previously stuck. As it turned out, all of my fixed idea lines, blurred!

A few weeks ago, I asked Dave to rip me to shreds. I wanted to hear it all. The good. The bad. The ugly.  All of it! I felt it was a good idea. I thought, who better to ask, than the one person who knows you best. The one who is with you, day in, and day out ;o) He was sweet, and uncomfortable, at first. After I repeatedly insisted, the roast of Jen was in full swing :o) This was his chance after all; I thought he should go for it. There may never be another ;o)

After the typical neat freak, OCD stuff, I gathered that before the accident, I made decisions quickly, and without hesitation. If asked anything, I came back with an I knew what I wanted, and when. He said, I am now, not as sure of things. I go back, and forth. I asked him if that was a bad thing, and he said, it's just different.

I instantly understood exactly what he was saying, and it got me thinking. I too, have noticed the difference and, in some instances, have actually tried to act in this particular manner. For example, I used to go to the same places, and order the same things. I used to want to go on the same trips, and knew exactly what I wanted to see, and do. I used to feel pretty confident in knowing how I would feel, and act in certain situations.

I have to say, when your entire world is flipped on its head, and you haven't a clue as to which way is up, you have no choice, but to see through different lenses!

The world, and everything in it, is suddenly unrecognizable. It is not as you once thought it was, and never will be again. For that reason, you start to live your life as though anything can happen, and at any given time. You quickly realize just how very fragile life is, and your priorities adjust accordingly.

Trust me, I am well aware that I am a work in progress. I am still trying to find my way to a more balanced life, but what I am trying to say is, once you are rocked to the core, a funny thing happens, that very same, scary, new world becomes your oyster!

From some of the things I write, it may not seem I feel this way, but please remember, this is my dumping ground. This is my place to let it all hang out. This is where I come to leave my deepest, darkest, happiest, and truest feelings. This is where I let everyone know what this is really like! You won't find any sugar coating here.

I am this way for one, single reason. I feel a false perception doesn't help anyone. I feel a story of grief, loss, hope, and recovery should be shared in its entirety. I would feel I am doing everyone, including myself, a disservice to only share the positive, uplifting moments, as those are only part of the story. Believe me, this journey certainly has its fair share of dark, lonely, desperate, and gloomy moments, too.

Overall though, this experience has taught me to be less rigid, and absolute. It has taught me that just like the wind, we can change direction at any given moment. Most importantly, I have learned to always open yourself to the never ending world of possibility!


  1. You are one brillian woman.

    (Plus, I'm amazed that you got a man to respond to a question like that - or to any question at all really.....but that's another story.)


  2. This is one of my favorite posts of all time!

    You nailed it sweetie and expressed yourself beautifully - Bravo ♥

  3. I have had my world flipped, twisted, and rocked within seconds too.

    My new 'oyster' is, as yours, different than the previous.

    Some of it I like...Some of it I don't. I like savorying the moments more but I don't like knowing that death can come without notice and out of the blue.

    I think the benefit of being honest during turmoil and trial is not only amazing for the one in the turmoil and trial but for others who have not had 'that' turmoil.

    I do not have a brain-injured child...but reading your words, walking with you, listening to the good, bad, hard, horrible, makes ME a better friend to those around me suffering through kid-related issues...etc.

    If you sugar-coated, all of your readers would not be better people ...

    but because of your openness, we are ALL better people for reading your words.

    Your writing has made us more compassionate, understanding, and aware ...

    thank you for making US better people ...

    You beyond rock my socks of soul sista...


  4. Jen-

    This is a wonderful post. I thank you for being so honest and I think it makes it easier to relate to you. No matter what life you live there will always be ups and downs and I thinak youf for being so honest and sharing your deepest, most personal thoughts with us. Thanks for being you and most importantly being REAL!

    Michelle Allen

  5. Love love love love your statement, "there is no sugar coating here." I crave honesty. Don't like me? Fine, tell me to my face. Think I'm a bitch? Fine, I know I am! (I'm not talking directly to you, you know what I mean). I think you're a self involved person who is a waste of space (again, NOT talking about you, I'm actually saying something I HAVE said to someone). Tell things like they are, as YOU perceive them to be, through your eyes. People may not agree with you and might even become confused, but at least it's YOUR truth!

    Love you.

  6. Life is short. Being authentic is optional. You are authentic and beautiful in all of who you are. There are so many things we are learning from your story and if one person becomes one iota more authentic, you've made the world a better place.