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JANUARY 4, 2021 /  / OPINIONS

CONCUSSION LOG #3

There’s a lot that I miss from pre-concussion, and of course these things were most likely under-appreciated if barely noticed at all through these past nine months of whatever it is we want to call everything associated with COVID and 2020. So, I thought for today, I’ll focus on what I’m excited about for post-recovery and what I’m excited about that is new for me in the midst of this current head space.Post-recovery excitements:

  • Spending a full morning or afternoon playing with my kids, doing chores around the house, and maybe even preparing a meal without requiring frequent breaks. Maybe we’d even add a walk or hike in there. I never thought I’d miss a mundane Sunday morning, but here we are.
  • Participating in a full hour-long zoom meeting, or dare I say, making it through services, leading even in part. It’s amazing how much brain power it takes to look in the direction of a screen. And the impact singing has on a concussed head is remarkable. It turns out that all those facial vibrations, essential for creating a good sound, can really get to your head. Along these lines, I look forward to a more full work day, where in this COVID era my work hours are only broken up for parenting duties and not also for headache breaks.
  • Enjoying even half a glass of red wine and not regretting it 15 minutes later.
  • Being able to read the front page section of the New York Times and actually focus (Whether I’ll have time for that before the kids go to college is a different story).
  • Running. I was running four miles several times a week on my favorite Maplewood-South Orange loop before this happened. I miss that loop so much that I drove it this morning after dropping off the little guy at school. Two weeks ago, I ran two miles and felt like a wreck the next day. Being able to run the NYC Marathon this November (hopefully) will feel all that more glorious with my starting from here. By the way, I’m running this marathon in part for Movember, a leading organization focused on changing the face of men’s health, again feeling all too relevant as I go through this. Please consider supporting my efforts on my Movember fundraising page.

In-recovery joys:

  • Things far more mundane. See above.
  • Being able to write for even 30 minutes.
  • Making it through a bunch of emails. I feel so very victorious.
  • Hot showers. They feel wonderful.
  • Meditation breaks. The most positive personal consequence of all this is that my meditation practice, taken on with daily commitment at the start of COVID, has become a mainstay of my healing and resting process. I’m now getting more than an hour of meditation each day and finding that I’m able to reach a peaceful if not sublime state rather quickly. I’m finding that the benefits are reaching into the rest of my life, as one would expect from such regular meditation. There are more moments of less reactivity, particularly around my children, and given the concussion’s impact on me of my being significantly more irritable, as well as highly sensitive to sound, which is rather brutal when living with two children and a dog (the cats and Miriam are comparatively quiet), this decline in reactivity and increase in mindful patience is rather remarkable.
  • My morning espresso (always).

Thank you for caring.

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