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.
My neurologist nodded her head as she read my medical report.
"You were a difficult one," she said.
The doctor pointed to a picture of a brain and showed Aimee and I where the hemorrhages occurred. She pointed to the right front side of her head to show me where the two contusions were located.
She explained the injury and then started asking me questions.
"Many patients tell me that they have unusual, violent thoughts. Do you?
I told her about certain impulses I get when I'm fatigued and frustrated. Most include me banging my head against the wall or floor.
We talked about my emotional outbursts. She turned to Aimee and asked how she was doing. Aimee started to cry.
"Have you thought you might have Post Traumatic Stress Disorder? Have you thought about seeing a counselor?"
I looked at Aimee and fought the tears back. I've done my best to appreciate her and what she went through this year. I tell her I love her everyday and how much I appreciate her but the fact is I am unable to grasp the pain and the hurt that she experienced. Her pain isn't just seeing me with half of my skull missing, a hole in my throat, and violent outbursts but also comes from remorse about my family, and a sickness in her own family.
Seeing her on the chair crying, and hearing the doctor say "Post Traumatic Stress Disorder," might be one of the toughest things that I have seen or felt in this past year.