I’ve worked all evening on a new website for my friend’s business. It kept my mind busy. Good. I need that. Wish I could wake up with this much calm and quiet in my mind and body. But if tomorrow is anything like the (guesstimate) 3,593 days I’ve spent either trying to get off my benzo or recovering from the damage it did to my brain and body, it will be a challenge to navigate. I’ve gotten pretty good at coping with the burning, tingles, twitching, bone pain, muscle pain, spasms, ears screeching, funky vision, jaw pain, crushing feeling, mind-blowing fatigue, weakness, jelly legs, head pressure (you’re getting the idea I’m still fucked up, right? Right.) intrusive thoughts, intrusive memories, looping thoughts, and just all the other crazy silliness that goes with this whole syndrome. Oh, wait, did I forget the high anxiety? How can I forget that little darling? 🙂

What I know at this point is I still have healing to do. That being said, I have made changes in my life to better speed that process along. (Ok, not sure I can make it go faster, but I can sure make it easier for healing to happen.)

1. I don’t wear make up any more.

I know, you’re thinking, “Wha??? So big deal. What’s that got to do with healing?” For me? Plenty. I used to be SO wrapped up in how I looked. Not having a strong sense of my own self-worth, I hid behind a face that I was told was “pretty.” I remember years ago when my savings account was taking a hit (remember when the stock market went into freefall in ’08?) and I actually used to worry if I would have enough money to get botox and fillers. I kid you not. I wasn’t worried about my retirement plan, I was worried about my wrinkles! God forbid that I lost my looks. (I just giggled as I wrote that. It seems so amazingly shallow and silly. But it was where I was at at the time.) For me to go without makeup is a HUGE step in my healing my soul.

2. I don’t wear contacts anymore. I wear big funky glasses.

I could just copy and paste the above paragraph here. You get the idea… I am healing my infantile need to be special, pretty, etc.

3. I cut my hair Mia Farrow pixie short.

Yup. I asked my hairdresser (her name is Karma, soooo perfect for me!) to cut, cut, and cut some more. It’s super easy. Wash, condition, towel dry and finger comb it into place, put on my glasses (and clothes of course!) and I’m out the door. Now, once out, I have no idea where to go as I am so sick again, but by God, I am out the door.

4. I filter everything I do with one simple question: “Is it simple?”

Everything has to be simple for me to heal. I can’t do drama. I can’t do complicated. I need simple. I have backed away from teaching at Stanford again, attempting to consult at Google, coach anyone for any reason, or take on any job that demands more than my brain can handle. What I can handle is writing. I am now writing for others. I can do it curled on my couch, or out in the garden. Easy peasy.  I cook and eat simple. I dress simple. I even cleaned out every drawer and closet (not kidding, every single one!) and got rid of a mountain of crap I didn’t need, didn’t use, didn’t wear, didn’t like. My home is so airy and light, I love it. Simple.

5. Hold on to hope.

Almost every email I send to Don has some version of “I’ll never heal.. waaaa! Waaaa! Waaaaaaaaaaaa! in it. I admit. I lost hope. Totally. I’m only now getting it back in bits and pieces. I realize I have to stop writing or talking negative and get my brain back into positive mode. As long as I have life, there is hope!

6. Pray and mean it.

Don told me about a prayer he sent up to his creator. I said a similar prayer. I prayed that my creator would MAKE me surrender to his/her/its will for me. I don’t seem to have the bandwidth or enough courage, so my creator is going to have to do it for me. Sometimes I get scared to think what I am going to face, but I know, it will be ok. (Remind me to write a post about Kenny’s visit from heaven. it’s a goosebumps maker!)

7. Rinse, repeat.

Since I am a restless, irritable and discontented lass, (if those words ring out to you, you’ll get that I like Bill W. A lot!) and I muck things up because I want what I want, when I want it and how I want it. I have a hard time giving up control. I’ll most likely have to keep working at these things over and over. That’s ok. It’s not a race. It’s a life. It’s my life. And I am trying damn hard to make it meaningful, rich and full even on the days when I have so much fear and pain, and all I can do is cry on the couch. I may be sick but I still matter. Just as you still matter.

8. Last but not least, love.

I want to learn how to love me better. I want to learn to love even this time of my life. Instead of hating it, I want to love it, just like the way I love my four children. I am tired of all of the negative energy in my life, caused by my fear, my illness, my weakness, my lack of faith, my need to control…. etc…… LOVE cures all. I believe it can cure my brain damage if I give it a chance.

It’s after 1 a.m. Time to call it a day. I’m going to predict that tomorrow is a better day than today. How’s that for a positive thought? 🙂

To infinity and beyond!