Have you heard of Murphy’s Law? My dad used to use that term all the time growing up, especially when he was on one of his lecture modes about how life isn’t easy and we all have to work hard in order to have a good life. Then of course, he threw in how he and my mother escaped the war to give his children a better life, an easier life, so don’t disappoint him, which I have already done by not being a doctor, lawyer, engineer, or pharmacist (just kidding).
He would always say that when things go too well, more than likely it will come down times 1000, so be prepared. Can you imagine a 14-year-old getting this lecture? Why do you think I became the way that I am, which is a super crazy planner to make sure life goes smoothly and that I can come out ahead, even on the moments where it looks pretty dreary?
Overall, I would say I have been raised to be very optimistic, giving, but yet able to be independent, but lately, my optimism has decided to go into hibernation for the winter. Over the past year, life hasn’t been that easy, but I kept reflecting that up until now, my life has gone pretty smoothly and I’ve been lucky, so a few potholes are expected, but even the best of us have a breaking point.
Lisa and I were talking about this. When we get sad or angry over something that has happened in our lives, we always think of how lucky we are in general. I always tell myself I have amazing parents, so many amazing friends, a paycheck, I can still walk, I’m alive and then when I watch CNN, I feel guilty for even thinking my life is bad. Look at the people who die in the Middle East from suicide bombers or I hear of someone dying from cancer or a random accident and I tell myself, I can’t believe you wallow in your problems, when people are in such worst shape.
I think that’s how I’ve kept myself going and how all of you thought life was back to normal for me, including my family. For me, I keep a lot of things to myself because every person is fighting their own battle and it’s not fair to add another burden nor is it fair to make them worry, which is why I tell my parents I’m fine or if they do see a medical bill, I joke it off, so I am not the reason to shorten their life.
Many of you have asked me if I’m ok, why I seem a little sad, or distant. I’m not going out as much anymore and there is a good explanation. I’m trying to focus on fixing me.
Last year, a lot of you supported me right after my car accident and I was very lucky that I was not more severely injured with a broken bone, but sometimes I would rather have a broken bone that heals, then all the lingering health issues I’ve had to date.
When I first got in the accident, since I didn’t have any noticeably physical injuries other than horrible bruises, pain in my hip, knees, neck, back, and wrist, which are all the places that got hit when I was thrown around in the car, no one really figured to dig any deeper.
All they saw was bruises for a few months, but that did not stop me from dressing up. So those were the bruises all over my legs from my hips to my feet, front and back, which lasted for a few months. This picture was a month after. So from a doctor’s point of view, again, it’s normal with a car accident.
The doctors sent me to PT, which I was in for nearly 4 months and they gave up on me because the pain was so much. I thought it was manageable. I have my good days and my ok days. But since August, I’ve had many bad days. My back and neck constantly hurt, but it’s a dull pain, but on the days that it gets bad, I just lay there and heat it until I fall asleep.
I honestly told my mother I’m an old lady, especially when it gets cold, my back, neck, and especially my left knee hurts. When I was on the cruise, there were a few days I could barely walk without Lisa’s help. I haven’t been able to go to the gym because my knee hurts going up and down the stairs and trust me I never had an issue before. With this, there isn’t anything that can be done, but ice it and wait for it to heal. The doctor said with car accident victims being hit as hard as mine, it was NORMAL.
Right after the accident, I had memory issues for the first month pretty severely. I would forget complete conversations I have with people. I remember Julie and Lisa mentioning that they’ve told me stuff so many times, but they just attributed it to the accident. As time went on, I still had small moments where I forgot stuff, but I compensated it by putting multiple lists together not to forget and it seemed to work.
Yes, I went to the doctor and he kept promising it was normal with that type of accident. Then a few months later, I went to see a Neurologist in March and he gave me some shots, some meds, and again I thought it was ok. I thanked my lucky stars that it wasn’t permanent, but for some reason, since the end of September my memory issues have not only returned, it’s come back much worst. I did not notice at first because the signs are so small, but a few of my friends noticed a change in personality, sometimes forgetfulness, and very recently it was my co-worker that brought up that I’ve been different.
Then my boss brought this up, she said that I was a superstar performer when I walked I first walked in the door. She has noticed I am still performing well, but in areas that I wasn’t initially strong about, I am taking a little bit more time and recommended I go see someone again to figure this out. She said she knows my quality and this is only 80% of what I used to give her, which is still better than what a lot of people perform at 100%, but she wants to see me better and to be able to give 120% like in the old days.
At this point, I’m back to the drawing board. My days are filled with doctor appointments, tests, and I had to go to a few counseling sessions because they think that it’s not normal that I don’t tell this to everyone and that I don’t ask for help.
The past couple of weeks, it has really gotten bad. It first started with me going to make chicken noodle soup, it took me 3 trips. The first time I went, I got everything, but the noodles and the chicken, then I went back and only got the noodles. For all of you know me, I’m so well-organized, that this is not the norm. My memory is so good, people like Aline have been amazed at it, this includes my own parents, so when I forget something this small, it’s a big red flag.
Last week, it took me 3 times to finish a shower. I hopped in and hopped out without actually washing my hair. After that, I went back in, but forgot to wash the conditioner out. The other day, I was drying my hair and A walks by and he’s like why are you drying your hair? It’s not wet. In my head, I thought I washed my hair while showering; no I just took a bath.
When I went to the new neurologist, he said I have post head concussion and he’s mad no one caught it before or did an MRI of my head, but it has very similar symptoms like this, especially being confused, slow processing, etc… When he tested me though, he’s like your intelligence is still there, but it’s as if you are a computer running on a slow processor. I don’t want to be a slow computer; we all throw those away to get a super fast one. One day, someone will throw me away.
To be able to only function partially is not only frustrating, but it makes you feel so disabled. I have to make lists for everything, but even with the lists I forget things. If I make it out of the house remembering 90% of what I needed, it’s an accomplishment. It is so emotionally draining to think over and over again and be so afraid of forgetting something, especially at work. My team doesn’t know, it’s not any of their business, so I try so hard to make sure I don’t slip at all. Even normal people make mistakes, but to me, if I ever forget something I didn’t before, it makes me break down. There are days when I just don’t feel like doing anything, but I make myself get up.
And honestly, I can relate to people who have blue days. Because I’m so frustrated with myself, sometimes out of the blue I just cry, especially when I forget something. You all know how organized, smart, and great memory I had before.
I hardly ever use the word hate, but I am going to I HATE it, I hate having to use my sick leave for something that wasn’t my fault. I hate that when I really need my sick leave like when I have a kid, a big portion of it is used because of these injuries. I HATE the girl. I hate that she was reckless and hit me. I hate that she went to court and was found guilty, but nothing probably changed in her life. I think it’s unfair that for her mistake, for her taking prescription drugs, I have to suffer.
Because of her, everyday somewhere on my body, I am in pain whether it is my knee, back, neck, or sometimes wrist. I cannot do what I used to do, even simply going to the gym; I can’t do my Zumba or Bollywood dance classes anymore because after all the impact, I can’t walk. So now, of course all the weight I worked so hard to lose is all back.
I hate going to doctor after doctor where before, I barely got sick except for my yearly case of the bronchi. Now you look at my bills, it’s all dedicated to the doctor.
I absolutely despise her for having the lowest coverage (my close co-worker hates her too) for an accident. She only has $50 K, so no matter how bad my medical bills are, State Farm doesn’t pay over it. And even if you go to court, you can only get so much and it might end up costing you more, my bills are already close to that max amount, so I just expect that I have to put this in my budget for many years to come.
I hate her for putting me in a horrible financial situation. I was doing fine before I got in the accident, but now I have to pay everything out-of-pocket and wait for reimbursement if they give it to me. I hate that money I was going to use for a lot of awesome trips, a new laptop, and a vacation for my parents all have to be put aside and now everything is being done on a budget. I have to justify every single thing I need because the insurance company is looking at me and saying, sure she has memory issues, and she’s trying to milk us. She has a good job and an MBA, she’s playhing the system. No, they don’t know that I struggle day in and day out to keep my job and stay at the same status quo as I was performing when I walked into the company.
Some procedures that I need, I have to pay for because it’s not essential, well you know what? Well, you think I like being sick? That’s how I feel, as a victim; they make you feel guilty for being looked at, for trying to get better.
Sorry for all the ranting, but honestly I’ve never hated someone so much. I’m sure she doesn’t even think twice about her mistake, about the person she hits and how much it has impacted me. She doesn’t know at times, when I make that left turn and I see a flash, I still panic. She just gets to go about her life, when I struggle with mine.
Of course I’m going to end on a bright note meaning, this past year has brought a lot of happy memories. I have a great family, amazing friends (beyond amazing actually), and a lot of love in my life. I guess I’m luckier than 99% of the people out there, just by having those things.
I just have to keep telling myself that one day I’ll see the light at the end of the rainbow right?
Plus, I wished for a new car and a new car was what I got. Maybe not on my terms, but never the less, I got it.