Welcome to Second Chance to Live. I am glad to see that you decided to stop by and visit with me. Approximately three years ago I wrote this article for several reasons: to help other brain injury survivors realize that they are not alone in their process and to encourage my brothers and sisters to not let go of their dreams or their destinies — because more will be revealed to you.
And now for Part 1.
At the request of a friend, I will share some of my struggles as a traumatic brain injury survivor. I do not share this information to whine or complain, but to help others who are recipients of an invisible disability. My experience is unique to my journey, however I believe you can benefit from my experience. The power of identification sets us free from the shadows of despair. (Please read my post, The Power of Identification). As I write, I use the principle of identification to guide me.
Through much of my life, I had no idea that I was a traumatic brain injury survivor, much less a person with an invisible disability. As I have shared and alluded to in many of my posts, I internalized my despair and disappointment as a reflection of being a flawed individual. I absorbed the intolerance that I received as a quotient of being inadequate and defective. I practiced self-hate because I owned the messages given to me through ignorance. I spent many years of my life questioning the struggle of life itself. Unconsciously I believed that I deserved to be abused by people, because I did not know how to trust my judgment. I lacked self-confidence for a host of reasons, but mostly because I relied on others to validate my worth and value.
I bought into the notion that what other people thought of me was more important than what I thought about myself. Unknowingly, I attempted to overcompensate for my invisible disability through striving. I was driven to over achieve so that I might silence the inner wrangling of debilitating guilt and debilitating shame. I spent much of my time attempting to answer, defend or explain myself to other people, because I feared being misunderstood. I sought acceptance through active participation in many different kinds of churches. Needless to say, I frequently found as much, if not more intolerance from religiously pious individuals. I also found myself in a love – hate relationship with God. These cumulative struggles — as well as other ordeals that I will not elaborate on for sake of time — motivated me to look for solutions.
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