This is a commentary about the slow lane, about the slowing of time since I suffered a severe brain injury while skateboarding with my dog. This is a blog about recovery; about our '82 VW Westfalia. It's about writing, surfing, camping, married life, bleeding ulcers that make you feel old at 32; about family, friends, and my dog Artie; it's about cruising in fourth gear, getting passed by every car and learning to appreciate every second of it.
Time is speeding up. A change of pace, compared to the way that the last six months of my life have lagged. In the early stages of recovery, time slowed to a crawl as I got to know the person that this injury had turned me into. It slowed even more as I fought the new traits, the depression and the rage.
But the past few weeks I have gone from first to fifth gear with no warning. And now my days speed by in the wink of an eye. I've learned that not only does time fly when you're having fun, time also flies when your recovering from Traumatic Brain Injury.
The decreased attention span, lack of concentration, distractibility, and impulsiveness act as time's propeller. I sit on my couch, computer in my lap, trying to write. Frustrated by my lack of concentration, I get up and brew some tea, or get a glass of water. Different chores that I need to do start flooding my mind. I sweep. I mop. I can't stop. Artie enters the kitchen and I take him out to the back alley and throw the ball for him. Fifteen minutes later I come back inside and finish my chores in the kitchen. After, I return back to the couch and force myself to write for another brief interlude. Once the attention span wanes, I get up and repeat the whole thing over, just different chore in another room. Before I know it, the day has come to an end. I have accomplished a long list of little items, nothing substantive, nothing meaningful.
It's a debilitating feeling, and it tells me that I have entered a new phase in my recovery. The time has come to defeat the fleeting thoughts and the obsessive compulsions, to slow the pace. I thought this recovery was hard before, I was right, I thought it would get easier, it hasn't, just different. It's hard not to want to quit everything. I want to sit and do nothing as a way to stop the thoughts and the endless tasks. I know I can't but I wish I could.