Three years ago my doctor spoke five words that changed my life forever - "You have permanent brain damage." Wow. Seriously?! So, when you say traumatic brain injury you mean trauuuumatic brain injury.
I went from rockstar employee, calendar crushing full-time single Mom with a busy social life, to not remembering I poured that cup of coffee on the counter. I couldn't drive, I couldn't work, I could hardly take care of myself let alone anyone else. My ability to be bigger/better/faster seemed ridiculous, laughable even. I didn't know how to not be constantly active. Doctors kept using the word "can't" which wasn't a word I was familiar with. It was a ruthless change. The next 2+ years consisted of countless doctors appointments, a couple surgeries, and endless physical/speech/occupational/cognitive therapy; more people using the word "can't." Haters, naysayers, and nonbelievers were rampant. The fastest way to be called a "liar" is to suffer a brain injury. Talk about insult to injury. Like I wasn't dealing with enough already. Throughout all of this, I was determined to regain a foothold on my life. I wouldn't believe this was as good as it gets post injury. I pushed myself daily.
This is where my giving key enters the picture.
Three months ago, I bought a "believe" key for myself. I wore it nearly everyday as a visual reminder to believe in myself and my abilities. I CAN do anything I want to do regardless of my injuries. Since buying my necklace, I designed and built an online business - my dream business - myself. Official launch day is Monday. Wow, right?! Who would have thought three years ago that I would become a small business owner. Certainly not me. Flash forward to today, I firmly believe in my ability to do anything. Determination is omnipotent.
In the past 2 weeks, I'd felt the time to pass my necklace on to someone else had come. I kept my eyes open for someone to give my key too. But, last Monday I lost my necklace while in Glenwood Springs, Colorado. My son and I had just finished a very strenuous hike. I remember the moment after finishing the hike, when the past few years flickered before my eyes. All the people who didn't believe I could accomplish such a strenuous hike; all of the naysayers and haters. I smiled a huge smile of success. I had regained my belief in myself and my future. As my son and I were getting into the car I realized my necklace was missing. The time to pass on my necklace had come. I hope whoever finds my necklace finds belief in themselves just as I did. Don't believe someone who says you "can't." You can do anything if you believe in yourself.