Personality Change, is a Myth!
Your new life as you recover does not mean you have a new personality! This is a myth!
Are you the same person when your mother changed your diapers? Or when you were 10 years old, charging through some field, running around in a classroom with the teacher yelling to sit down. You had lots of energy then and still do; it is in a different place, Your Brain functioning differently! Are you the same when you were 18 years of age? No!
All of these years you have “Evolved”, and you will evolve, the deeper you descend into yourself to recover, liken to a scuba diver. There will be different parts of you that will change in behavior, as you did through your entire life. Being YOU!
you are growing from a DEVASTATING injury, of course you are going to change, change is natural, and change occurs all the time! This is called Life!
Look at yourself as a Season, some areas have two season – some have 5 season around the Earth. The Earth still revolves around the sun turning on its axis. You are no different – and while you improve and recover, you will become more of the person you were born to be, the same DNA, you have gone deeper to recover!
And this other Myth, that you do not know who you are because of your injury and not acting the old way! Okay, common sense here!! If you break your leg do you still walk the same? NO! Your brain has been injured, you are not going to behave the same, instead you are searching how to respond to life with an injury!
Let’s Begin: Are you able to list on computer or by hand, things you once loved? List them. Foods, types of foods, did you cook? Walks or Hikes and where – Animals, what kind and why, how did you enjoy them? Photography – Museums? People – what kind of people and are they the same kind you want now? How did you remember and study in your life? Were you a quick learner or visual or audio learner? Use these same tools, visual or audio, more. It’s your life, find what is comfortable and test drive!
What is different now? Do you have mild to severe anxiety? Nightmares (no need analyse them) we all dream it is a necessity for the brains’ daily release. How do you find being around people, 2 to 10, or at neighborhood barbeque, or at a Festival such as the Renaissance annual gathering.
How to speak in conversation and be in crowds? Festivals or family/friend gatherings. Let’s approach this issues with some common sense. And become more of who YOU ARE!
It is normal to have these change, for your brains’ sensations have change and your responses or reactions will change. Think, which do you prefer now and go out and enjoy.
For how long? This is where you must listen to your inside voice!! The inside voice comes in many sensations from the brain: distinct images, the environment,is it too loud or not enough energy? Not the right person to speak with or the right topic? Your food tastes have changed [I’m still a vegetarian and still like well cooked meals]. Do you want to be at the place once you arrived? Always have an OUT!
For myself, after being rather a prominent fund raiser, and being easily comfortable around 100’s of people, I can handle up to 30 some now for up to two hours. This part of me did change, or was it that I grew up? Or that I found a lady inside, whom I preferred to be and show up as? I still volunteer with more acuity!
My “OUT” was and still are my Arabian horses. I did have two and they needed to be fed, now only KlassicAmir. It did not matter if I had fed them before the party or festival or community involvement, this is my OUT!
“”Most important for you while you are improving and going out” “Do Not Talk about your Injury or how it Occurred!!” This talk will “”Re-traumatize you!” These are moments for you to enjoy, if someone asks, Smile – I’m doing well and YOU?” Always turn the subject back to the other person!
These moments never offend a guest or friend. Some close friend might understand if you tell them, “the energy gets to my head! And it Re-traumatizes!” You begin to get overwhelmed, as your Brain processes goes backwards in trauma, the brain becomes fatigued! Possibly your speech becomes awkward or slurred, your anxiety becomes titled toward a panic attack.
you always have the option to leave with your “out!” make it logical to your life – no one will be offended and you will have made a quantum leap in your improvement!
Go home and rest or take a walk alone somewhere pleasant. If you are feeing tired, the brain needs rest!
Rest during these times are extremely important, whether you go to sleep for the evening or meditate. You don’t know meditation, it was not part of your past, meditation is easy.
The statistics on mediation and its equivalency to sleep vary. What is simple about meditation, you can take a short break [if at work], 10 minutes meditate, and resume what you were doing. Or, to calm anxiety, panic attacks, gain control of your breathing and emotions, all to relax the brain – this is the primary function of meditation, is to relax the brain and be quiet. You just Kissed the Beast!
Sit in a comfortable place or on a pillow or floor, close your eyes, breathe deeply following the breath and relax, be quiet. Be a silent Rock where a soft gentle rain is falling upon you, washing away the Day. That simple!
Even with those doctors who you might see after the initial testing or the first couple of months, write the injury occurrence down, make copies for any doctor or medical provider or email your scenario, prior to your visit. Tell them, “I do not wish to continually experience the trauma, here!” If they do not respect your wishes, this is YOUR Recovery, get a new doctor!
This venue ought to be different if you are working with a “Trauma Therapist, it is their duty to know trauma models in order to fulfill recovery, not to increase trauma, rather decrease! Brainspotting, EMDR, CBT, CNBR, Hyperbaric chamber &c…)
Regain some of your past pleasures. Remember “Baby Steps equal Quantum leaps as you climb your own internal Pyramid. It is yours to Climb and be Free.”
Recap: Make a list of what you loved! All is not lost, you have a brain injury that can repair itself through your behavior. Have an OUT in social situations – dog, cat, horse – meeting a doctor, use these when your brain becomes fatigued. People wear us down especially when injured – Take care of yourself by eating real food! Write your trauma event down and hand it to medical providers, it is your right to be Trauma free!
Last a suggestion dear to my heart. Adoption of a pet who can serve as your “service animal and best friend.” No one listens better than a Dog! Or wags their tail and butt like a Dog, nor purrs like a cat with a rhythmic breathing you can use as a pillow.
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About the Author: MicheleElys is a Neurobehaviorist ~ Writer ~ Educator ~ Keynote Speaker.
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