Lately, I’ve been struggling with two realities of my life – me “before” the stroke, and me now. I feel like I’m always striving to become me “before” (how I talked, how I typed, how I read out loud to Evan, etc.). If anything doesn’t happen like it would have “before” (I stumble on words, or make a mistake typing, or forget something minor), it’s because of the stroke and my brain. Then, it becomes something I need to “work on”. But, if those things ever happened “before”, I wouldn’t think twice about them – I wouldn’t need to “work on” those things. Sometimes, you just have a bad moment or day or week, and that’s it. Now, mistakes are a much bigger deal to me because it’s due to my brain not working right.
I also recently realized that I’m much close to “before” than I thought. I’m constantly reminded of what I couldn’t do, but that’s not my reality anymore. In fact, I’ve cut a lot of my therapy, because there is just no need for it. I don’t need to work on strengthening my right side because there is no weakness there. Really, if I kept going with a physical therapist, he would just become my personal trainer (though that would be nice, that’s not the point). When you’re always being reminded of what you couldn’t do, or what you need to work on, your confidence in your abilities gets diminished.
All this rambling can be summarized like this: I’m not perfect (now, or “before”) and I need to give myself a break. I don’t need to “work on” things. Mistakes happen, to me and to “normal” people. I just need to let myself live my life. In fact, living my life is the best rehab I can do.