Below Average

Flag of the Sikh Empire, french flag overlaid ...
Flag of the Sikh Empire, french flag overlaid with waheguru written in punjabi across the front (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Cue Simran from the Tuhi Tuhi app.  I am absolutely in love with those words.  They bring me peace. Well at least on most days.   “You have scored below average on some key areas of your memory and reason” the doctor explained calmly over the phone to me yesterday.  I still hear echoes of it. Me?  Below average? It can’t be. Over and over. Below average in 3 out of 5 main areas of memory.  He went on for 15 minutes, but I couldn’t tell you what he said. I could blame that my short-term memory which has declined as per the doctor, but it’s more likely that I felt defeated in that moment. 3 months of meditation, BK Shivani,,, reading  and exercise seem to be all for nothing, I could explain that my reason has declined as per the doctor, or that I have a hard time visualizing places, things and events making it hard for  me to remember directions or recent events or people. I could just believe  I am below average.  Keeps echoing. Almost at pace of the simran in the background…  Deep breath. Inhale. Exhale out.

My stroke and brain surgery had taken a part of me. I am angry. I am frustrated. I feel alone.  I cannot be below average. That just is not in my vocabulary.  Fuck you stroke. Fuck you brain surgery. YOU. WILL. NOT. TAKE ME. I will not allow you take anything of mine anymore. You won the first and second round, that’s all. Last one is mine, or I am going down swinging. You will not take me dignity. My creativity. My reasoning. My love. My family. My friends. My reasoning. My words.

Tuhi Tuhi.  Waheguru.  I have faith. I am the creator of my thoughts, feelings and actions. They make my destiny. Anger is poison. Anger destroys. Relationships, will, love.  I know that. I will not bow down to negativity. I will not let anything or anyone take me from me.  I am not below average.  I am me.

The doctor said to get retested in January. I am going to, and I will keep at it until I get back who I was. Breath out the anger, hate, frustration and breath in the calm. Waheguru.

APS, Myself

The Meaning of I

Lately, I have been on auto-pilot for a lot of things. From drowning in noise on Facebook, to not reaching out to my real friends. I have let others and other things determine my days.  I have let too many things to lead me rather than me grabbing life by its throat, and getting things done.   This year has started out rough. A few days after my 41st birthday, I suffered a relatively serious illness due to my condition. I have Antiphospholipid Antibody Syndrome conveniently called APS syndrome (what is it with doctors and their long ass disease names?!).  Simply, I have an auto immune disease where my blood thickens and creates clots.  It was discovered several years back when I woke and could not talk out of the side of my mouth, and drove myself to my primary who immediately saw the signs of a stroke (surprise, now I am a stroke survivor! Who would have thunk it!), and admitted me into the hospital.  So I am sick.

Now I have had two choices. I could either roll around and moan that I am sick, or I could keep moving.  Anyone that knows me knows what I picked up.  Yet, it hasn’t been easy. I cannot take my days for granted anymore.  It is something that I have to remind myself that although I look and mostly feel 100%, I am not.  That’s hard to take for me.  Each morning, I have to wake up and be reminded that I have to work towards being well. Not just physically, but in my thoughts and actions.  There is too much I have allowed to build up.  Too many thoughts and feelings towards people and myself that I have left unsaid.

Yet, it is not easy starting over. In fact, it sucks.  I hate the fact that I cannot work out or that I tire easily after 6 to 8 hours. I hate that I have to parcel out myself to others because I have a nasty habit of blowing up at inconvenient times. I have to relearn a lot of things.  The main thing I have to work on is the word “I.”  I am constantly struggling between just focusing on my pain and being there for others. I have failed many recently because I have been too caught up with myself. The word “I” rules my world and while some days it is justified, it does not make it OK to NOTIMG_0698 see others and their pain.  I know I am better than that.  I have to be better than that because there is no point in life if you cannot contribute to others. So each day starts with a TO-DO list. A list of things I need to do, and be.  A list of reminders that there is more to the world than just me.

So each day starts with the reminder that I am sick.  But each day also starts with “I can be better.” I will be better.  There is no middle ground.