It All Changed With a Bang

The struggle has been so real this summer for Mama K-2.  Her days have been filled with twists, turns, sadness, love, fear, anger, and hope.  She wanted to share her long road in a short series with the wish that other Mamas receive this message: You are enough… despite all circumstances and all hardship, you are enough and YOU ARE UNSTOPPABLE! Life may seem like it’s brought you to a screeching halt, but it really just wants you to take a different route for a while and see different scenery.  Look around, breathe it in, know you are enough and keep the faith, fellow Mamas. Make it your mantra today!

Mama K-2’s journey starts here:

In April and May, I felt unstoppable! I completed 2 marathons in 10 days plus month of May Iron Man at Boyertown YMCA. I’ve never really considered myself an athlete, but maybe I could after accomplishing those goals.

Watching with the anticipation of a young child on Christmas eve as my teenagers finish up the school year, I was excited for what the summer was bringing and the fun plans we had. My daughter and I hopped into car and headed to her audiology appointment but never made it to appointment. While on the way, the gentleman behind us didn’t stop for the emergency vehicle passing and rammed into the back of our Prius. I had no idea how those few seconds would change things.

In the first 24 hours, I continued on as usual. I was annoyed with all the time I spent on phone with my insurance, the other driver’s insurance, collision center, car rental company, and everything else that comes along with a minor accident. I had stuff to do! Two of our Soleful Mamas were arriving from Pittsburgh to join us for MS Muck Fest with their daughters and we had an amazing weekend planned including a get together with more Soleful Mamas to celebrate all we had accomplished the last few months.  There was no time for this!

As the day continued no matter how hard I tried to ignore it, I had to admit I was hurting and needed to seek medical attention. The doctor confirmed what I was afraid of – not only did my daughter have whiplash and concussion, I did as well. He advised us not to participate in mud run and get some rest.

How could I be hurt?? I’m super woman! I don’t rest!! Rest is for the weak and clearly I’ve proven that I am not weak!! I have things to do and Pittsburgh peeps to prepare for! I’m hosting a party tomorrow and I’ve got so much to do!!

I soldiered on slowly and kind of pathetically and ended up on couch before they arrived. What is happening to me? I can beat this. . . I’ll just try harder! That’s how I’ve accomplished things in the past.

The headaches got worse. I felt completely foggy. I was having trouble focusing my eyes. Did I just stumble as I walked through the kitchen? (Maybe there was an earthquake or something because I don’t stumble!)

No Muck Fest, no Mamas celebration. Ok. . . That’s cool. I rested. Time to get back at it…

I logged into work – not a physically demanding job. I’m just sitting here on my computer working. Why does my head hurt so bad? Why does it feel like the whole world is moving when I shift my eyes back and forth across the screen? I need to close my eyes but it’s time for me to work. Stop it! Just try harder! After an hour and a half, I had to admit defeat. I physically couldn’t work.

Although I do believe we were lucky we weren’t hurt worse, I am surprised that we didn’t just bounce right back in a few days.

So now I struggle. I struggle because I don’t want help, but driving makes me nauseous, worsens my headaches, and I can’t read the signs with my visual issues. I have to accept help.

I struggle because I can’t be as physically active as I was. My CrossFit membership is on hold for a 2nd consecutive month. Running with the mamas and working out with Squad ZeroDark30 is my therapy in this crazy, busy world. Nothing makes me feel better than going a futher distance or lifting heavy things with friends.

I struggle because I don’t like where I’m at right now. A few weeks ago, I was accomplishing goals and setting new ones. I was pondering what was next. Was it time to really learn how to swim so I could train for a triathlon? Now, I struggle with a 3 minute stepping assessment where I’m very uncoordinated and feel like I’m going to fall off the box. I have to accept where I am right now and know in my heart it is only temporary. But… THIS IS HARD.  That phrase easier said than done? Yep, that’s me, here and now.

I struggle because I feel like a mix between Eeyore and Dory. I have to write things down because I just don’t remember like Dory in Finding Nemo and that makes me sad like Eeyore. I have to accept that I need to do things differently and find new strategies while my brain heals.

I struggle because I don’t want to be around me so when a dear friend offers to get together, I avoid it. I don’t want to spread my sadness like a contagious disease. I have to accept their invitations and show them how much i appreciate them.

I do firmly believe that things happen for a reason. I don’t know why this happened but I’m looking for those reasons every day. I’m making time to talk to my parents almost every day. I’m calling friends I’ve lost track of. I’m slowly able to do some crafts. (It’s becoming part of my therapy.) I’m taking time to be in the moment. I’m trying to appreciate baby steps of improvement and ignore that voice inside saying it’s not enough.  (I AM ENOUGH.) I’m sharing my story and letting myself be vulnerable because I know I’m not alone. Mamas face challenges and bumps in the road all the time. Maybe, just maybe sharing my story will help a fellow Mama who feels like everything changed with a bang.

One step at a time,

-Mama K-2

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