First Post-ABI Night Away from Home: Major Anxiety, Major Success

And now, back to a post that I was working on before I was distracted by less-pleasant events.

As the title of this post gives away, I recently had my first post–brain injury night away from the security of my husband and apartment in the form of a Saturday–Sunday trip to London, Ontario. I had a great time, it felt like a huge accomplishment, and, most importantly, it gave me a major confidence boost. If I can do this, I can do anything, right?! (I mean, all in good time.) And so, before I get into the details, I’ll start by awarding myself and the people who helped make this happen a gazillion gold stars. Though it took some serious organizing and a leap of faith, the visit couldn’t have gone any better.

This was the second attempt at this trip to see family friends; the first was aborted a month ago or so, right before I started my neuro day-hospital program, when my husband and I realized that we weren’t yet ready for me to venture so far from the known safety net of home. Physically, yes; anxiety-wise, no. And so we chose another date, thinking that by the time it came around, I’d be settled into the rehab routine and a little more stable and that we’d both be more comfortable with the idea of me not being right next to my husband in the evening—most dangerous for me, in terms of seizures—if something happened.

Well, the agreed-upon date creeped ever closer, and I started getting excited. Of all ways to test the proverbial waters of my ability to travel at this point in my recovery, a visit to see these friends was absolutely ideal since they are, quite frankly, the nicest, most accommodating people on the planet. Indeed, they offered to drive from London to Toronto to pick me up and then make the return trip to drop me off. Seriously, who’s that sweet?

As was likely inevitable, the Tuesday before I was set to go, my husband began questioning whether or not it was a good idea.

“You’ve been having seizures,” he said. “You’re still having brain-injury symptoms. Are you sure you’re ready for this?”

“Yes,” was my very reassuring answer. No negotiating this time. The trip was on.

As the spoiler-of-a-first-paragraph of this post revealed, from the moment I got in my friends’ car to the moment I was returned to my apartment, I was sure that I had made the right call. We spent most of our time together at their place in London eating (all sorts of delicious food, including my favourite pear-squash soup) and catching up; we went for ice cream; I had a fantastic sleep; we went for a lovely walk; I basked in the satisfaction of knowing that I’m capable of venturing outside of my comfort zone; and before my adventure had hardly begun, it was over, and we were in the car heading back to T-Dot.

In sum, I’m incredibly grateful to my friends for facilitating this trip, and I’m proud of myself for going. There’s nothing like spending time with people who’re close to your heart while simultaneously making a stride forwards in your recovery: a definite double-win.

And that ice cream was pretty great, too.

Great ice cream somehow tastes even better when consumed in amazing company.




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