My husband made the comment to me the other day that my journey has been similar to that of the six million dollar man – He had a horrific accident, I had a horrific accident – he was rebuilt to be faster, stronger, better – I have rebuilt myself to be faster, stronger, better.
On 14th June 2013 was when I had my quad bike accident then on my first weekend home to Ingham I was in another car accident (that sent me back ages in my recovery), and from those days so many doctors, specialists, surgeons – you name it, put so much energy into rebuilding me for the better. I had to put in a lot of effort to get myself to where I am today – rehab, research, implementing what I had learnt from all those wonderful people to build myself up again.
I was extremely depressed after the second accident, all my injuries had been agrivated! I had come so far and because of some wanker not paying attention my life changed all over again! I was set back in my recovery and at times I didn’t know how I was going to go on. I HATED being in a car!
In April 2017 I had my right arm fused to try and reduce the pain, before that I struggled so bad there were days I wouldn’t get out of bed, it was too much effort to make something for myself to eat so I just wouldn’t eat, and frankly I was too exhausted to do anything about it. This operation was life changing to say the least. My pain reduced significantly (although I will always live with pain), my mood improved significantly, and my mind started working better than it ever had before.
I used to spend four days out of seven in bed, after the operation, once I recovered, I would spend maybe a day a fortnight. Now when my son goes down for his lunch time nap, I go for mine too, it’s not everyday either, sometimes I have too much housework to do. I no longer spend days in bed, I’m not palming my child off to everyone else because I am incapable of being a mother.
Before the op I was a mum who was flat out functioning, in the mornings I was flat out getting Jack ready for daycare, but in my head I pushed myself to get through to drop off time, go home and die for the day and pick him up by 5pm. I had Jack in daycare for five days a week from 4 months. I felt like crap. I wanted to be the one teaching him about life and at that time it seemed impossible.
I had a lot of help from my family, which I can’t even begin to say how grateful I am. They would go shopping for me, some days, a lot of days pick up Jack and take him home for outside play, feed him, get him ready for bed, then daddy would pick him up and bring him home for bed.
I’m now able to do all the things I was unable to do without significant effort before the operation, things like running errands, shopping, visiting – you name it! And to top that – I’m able to do it with an almost two year old, that’s right – one functional arm with a two year old.
Pain does horrible things to a person – it really screws with your head! I was an asshole to my in-laws to say the least. I felt that from the time Jack was born that I was constantly being judged and it made me feel as if they thought I wasn’t good enough for their son, and I wasn’t good enough to be Jack’s mum. I have had a really hard time dealing with negativity since my accident and my go to response is to shut people out. I shut them out, I feel like shit about it, they missed out on quite a bit of our lives, so much of Jack’s first 18 months, and it’s all my fault.
I’m one of those people who really could not care less about what people thought about me, but to me, being my husband’s parents, there opinion mattered.
I wasn’t just an asshole to them, I was horrible to my family as well – probably even worse, because you know, they understand you the most out of anybody, they have been with you your whole life.
I had my operation and it improved my quality of life significantly! I became a functioning mum, it really is the best success in my life to date. I have mended my relationship with my in-laws and we are now closer than ever! I love seeing Jack interact with them, he’s such a little character it’s so heart warming to watch.
Try not to be so hard on your judgement of others, they may just be having a down day, you don’t know, your not living in their body, and, more likely than not, you don’t live in chronic pain.