Screen Time…

So, screen time relates to any device, computer, tv you have and how much time you spend on them. It can be recreational – playing games etc, educational – researching online, non – interactive – like watching movies, clips online, or interactive – like using video chat, Skype etc.

For adults, screen time is a difficult thing to put a time limit on, as many people use computers as a tool for work, their phones for research on the net etc. Technology addiction is a real thing, it impacts the same area of the brain as drugs and alcohol, and It becomes an addiction when it starts to impact everyday life – relationships with your children, your friends and most importantly your spouse.

After somebody has a TBI the brain is in need of some serious tlc, it needs to rebuild itself again. While I was an impatient in hospital, I used to just sleep a lot (when your sleeping the brain repairs itself). I wasn’t aloud any technology at all – nothing! I didn’t understand at the time, but I do now, and I’m paranoid about screen time for me, for my son – only being 2 so it should really be limited throughout the day as it’s said to impact on their development.

I have read many books over the years about brain plasticity, and some have been very helpful in broadening my understanding on the whole concept. But now it’s like I only have short term memory, and very long term memory (before my accident). Yes – I do remember certain everyday things, but there is a lot I can’t, so from everything I have read, I have only retained a very small amount of it. I do find it helpful to take notes – I have like a million note pads around the house!

Regardless of my struggles, I wasn’t going to let my impairments stop me from becoming a mum. I was always going to be a mum – I did think when I was a bit younger, but everything in life happens for a reason. Screen Time is a hell of a lot harder when your a new mum, all sleep deprived, some days all you can do is watch things on tv (things that don’t require you to use your brain).

I think it’s all about finding the right balance – At lunch interact with your work colleagues, for dinner have a rule that there are no phones at the table and you all sit there and have dinner as a family. Find other things in your day where you can take a break from technology – when you exercise or play out doors with your kids in the afternoons, and here’s a crazy idea – go to the toilet without your phone!

Everyone’s frontal lobe functions better with less screen time, it’s better for your planning and problem solving. Its a really good idea to make it a habit (and for some I know this is unrealistic) to put down all technology a few hours before going to bed. I found it helpful to write out a list of what I have to do the following day, read books or magazines. It has also helped me get a better, more restful sleep at night.

Even for those who haven’t suffered from a TBI, it’s a great idea for your health & wellbeing to make conscious decisions when it comes to screen time – for yourself and for your family. Nothing shits me off more than someone who sits down for dinner with their phone (yes husband, I’m looking at you!), spend time with your family, talk to them, interact with your kids! They just want to spend time with you!

Aquo Xx

I found this website to be very informative, having a TBI, I wasn’t allowed any screen time until my brain met a certain stage of the recovery process.

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/mental-wealth

“That’s illegal you know!”

So, a few weeks ago, my husband, son and I went to Stockland to grab a few things. We parked in a disabled spot near the door as I have a disabled sign displayed in my car. The doctors signed off on this because not only did I break a few of my vertebrae when I had my accident, I also have mild Scoliosis which has given me hell since my younger days.

This lady walked past us (she looked as if she was in her mid 50’s) as we were getting our son out of the car, getting his stroller out, etc. When she was in front of us she started mouthing off to her husband (who looked as if he was over her shit,) “That’s illegal you know!” and carrying on about how we shouldn’t be there and how it was wrong etc. In saying that, looking at me – unless you knew me or really looked, you wouldn’t tell I have any impairments.

Obviously she didn’t even attempt to look and see if we had a disabled sign displayed. What she didn’t realise is what we were doing WAS IN NO WAY ILLEGAL! It was one of the very few times where I didn’t actually do anything illegal! She seemed like nothing but a snobby old bird that has nothing better to do with her time than winge about everyone else and who hates life.

It’s the first time in the five odd years since my accident that I have experienced behavior like that from someone else. So many emotions hit home – First shock, then anger then confusion. My husband and I were both in shock for a while after the incident. Once my brain started working again I mouthed off a bit, but she was too far away from me I don’t know if she heard me or not. I would of run after her and given her a piece of my mind but at 7 months pregnant I can’t move fast because everything is so bloody sore!

The pre-accident Aquo would have gone all Sparticus on her ass! Proper warrior style, add the anger & abuse! I’m defiantly not the same person I used to be and it’s definitely for the better. Not only has becoming a mum calmed me down heaps, but with the impairments I now carry, there’s no way I can risk getting into a fight.

The government has the whole one punch could kill slogan circulating – with the head injuries I sustained from my accident one punch really could kill me. It also doesn’t help that I only have one functional arm. I really can not afford to let myself loose my shit so much that I start a physical altercation with somebody, regardless of weather I believe I can take them or not, and really, I have too much to loose.

I’m still extremely hurt by what that lady had to say and the way she said it. She walked away thinking she was 100% in the right My husband and I have spoken about that event in great detail and have discussed how we can be better people from experiencing something so horrible. Everything happens for a reason, and from this experience I have learnt that we shouldn’t judge people from first sight – you have absolutely no idea what someone has gone through. We are all human, and everyone can be quite Judgemental at times.

People who really know me are probably thinking things like “Aquo’s gone all soft.” I’m not saying I’ve always been an angel and I have never been judgemental of anyone in my life. I could write a book on all the illegal shit I’ve done/attempted in my life and I could teach you a thing or two. I’m saying that through my journey, I have grown as a person, I’m no longer the angry bird I used to be (although you see glimpses of it at times) and I try everyday to be mindful of all my actions. I strive to be a better person without the ‘badass’ hangup. I don’t regret anything I have done in my life because without all those experiences I wouldn’t be where I am today.

I hope as parents, my husband and I are successful at raising our gremlins to be more inclusive of people who carry a disability and not be little judgemental assholes. It all starts with what they see at home. So always be mindful of the way you speak and act when your children are present.

Remember BE KIND ALWAYS!

Aquo Xx