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Do you really ever get over a SAH?


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I'm over 5 years post SAH ... do you ever get over it or have a day where it doesn't feature in your life and where you can forget about it?

Well, for me, the answer is probably "no" ... There's not a day that goes by, where my body or brain allows me to forget ... will that ever happen? I doubt it...

But not in a depressing way though, as I no longer feel as though I need a lot of support and have found a new "me" and on the whole, you will find me in good spirits :-D .... and I've learnt to adapt to how my life is now .... good days and bad ones, it's become par for the course in my day to day living and that of my family .... only time, seems to heal and it is a great healer!

I no longer have flashbacks or where seeing an ambulance with a blue light on and sirens, or where a hospital visit used to send my brain into overdrive and life is resembling some sort of normality, albeit it, not the same normality as life was before the SAH.... it's just a "different" type of normal! :wink:

My anxiety has lessened with the passage of time and I never thought that I would get to this stage ... It's been a tough ride and one that I wouldn't wish on anyone and has it made me a better person or has it changed me? I don't think that it has, as inside, I'm the same as I was before ... I'm just grateful for each day and being able to see my children grow from teenagers into adulthood and gaining their independence from me.

I've been lucky and I've found that friendships have been strengthened since my SAH and that people I'm close to, use my situation as an example.... and look at what's happened and decide to "seize" the moment and not put things off and just go for it ... We hug more, talk more and enjoy our time with each other... it's always special. :-D

I still like to push myself ...and that won't ever change! :wink: Even though I've learnt to pace myself and know that I need to be sensible, there are still times when I go over the top when I'm having a good day .... but, that's me .... I know what the consequences will be, but better to try and fail, rather than not to bother at all! ...:wink:

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Very well written, Karen!! (I'm sorry, I called you Sally in a post on another thread - DOH!).

It's interesting to see how others deal with their SAH, and being only 7 months on it's still a steep learning curve for me. I hear you though: I don't think I'll ever learn to really pace myself!! :lol: I try, really I do!!

Thank you again because this place is brilliant and you have helped so many people.

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Hi everyone yes you do start to forget in time, at the start every little head pain every dizzy spell I used to worry it was happening again, I have had some serious dizzy spells over the last few days this time three yrs ago I would of been at the doctors not anymore, I just don't jump to the conclusion it's my head anymore. I do occasionally think about it, but there are more days that I don't.

In time you will start to forget I mean I haven't collapsed with the dizzy spells I did 8yrs ago thats how I knew it was serious, now it's more like vertigo but I live now as if everyday is my last and enjoy my life that's all you can do, the likely hood of any of us dying from a brain hem is slim we are more likely to be run over or something.

I'm going now but you will forget over time. Jess.xxx

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Hi Karen

that is very well written as I bet most of us feel exactly the same way. You covered most of the feelings I have about my SAH, I know only being 10 months down the line it is still very new to me but I have no anger about it as it happened without my control just destiny.

My biggest worry is being able to go back to work to pay the mortgage. The only alternative is a big downsize or rental. After all these years that would be a sorry event but the main factor like you point out is we are still hear and have to embrace the days and the future with pleasure and enjoyment. As Imentioned the other day I saw my daughters 32 weeks scan, what a privilige and joy it was. I am so looking forward to becoming a Grandad and grateful that my SAH did not take away the pleasure of experiencing the event.:wink:

Thanks to all the team on the site you provide a wonderful link to so many people who we can know call new friends.

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I'm even earlier days than John & JayKay but what you ahve writen makes a great deal of sense to me. I sill haven't learnt my limits although I do lsien to my body more & rest when I can. having an SAH is part of my life so I don't think I will ever get over it or forget about i either. But it's true it srts out the true friends in life for you

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Yes Karen well written, well said.

I’m a lot more down the line than Karen & I can answer for me too is ‘no’ its there 365- 24/7 but I don’t think about ‘will it ever happen again’

For me when I started to accept the ‘new me’ then life moved forward a lot...

Thankfully for me I have never stuffered from flash backs however I have no memories at all I cant recall things that happened and for me that is ‘my nightmare’ since my SAH I have lost my Dad & I have no memories of him what so ever for me to be able to get something back (even with flashbacks would be a small price to pay) for what I don’t pocess....

From mine I have gained great determination I don’t quite easily now when I do its after trying to do something from all angles....

But without the determination I wouldn’t be who I am today......

Edited by Louise
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Hi Karen

So well put :)

I can't actually imagine a time that I will have forgotten what happened to me. Surely something so momentous can't just be forgotten. Yes I can assume that any anxiety and fear will lessen over time, but the actual event will always be remembered.

I do recall an awful lot of what happened to me, and I do get some flashbacks but I can understand how frustrating it must be for some people not being able to recall days or weeks of their situation, as well as previous memories.

It is brilliant that you took the time to set up this site, and maintain it for all of us. It is a lifeline.

Thank you again for being amazing! :D

Kel x

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Hi Karen

I totally agree with you and also tend to live life to the full now. I don't think I'll ever forget but the anxiety and constant fear has now faded. BTG has played a large part in my recovery and acceptance of the new me so as always Karen many many thanks :-D

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That was very well written Karen and echoes a lot of what I feel too. Well done! :D

I too think about my SAH, but not every day. It still affects me in small ways, but on the whole, I’ve made a good recovery and I’m very lucky to be able to do everything I was able to before my SAH. You’re a strong woman Karen and you always look for the positive things rather than the negative. Everyone should take inspiration from that, I know I have.

“Where there is a will, there is a way.” as the saying goes, and that is so very true. Life puts many obstacles in our way, but if we believe we can overcome them, then we can succeed. We may try many ways that don’t succeed, but if we give up we cannot truthfully say that there is no way, only that we gave up before we found the way that works. Life for most does change after SAH, for better or for worse, but we have to learn to accept the cards that we have been dealt in life and make the best of what we have.

Never give up! There’s always a way.

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Thanks for your kind replies! :-D To be honest, I nearly didn't post it once I had finished writing it .... as didn't think that it made much sense! I'm surprised that I got any replies! :lol:

It was actually reading Kel's post in the Green Room about her flashbacks and how a conversation with a colleague about her Christmas works do this year, had brought Kel's emotions into play and how raw things still are for Kel and that even though we think that we've buried them to a degree, it's often only beneath the surface in the early months and even years of recovery.

Kel kind of got me thinking about my early recovery again and how I tried to make sense of events, coping with the anxiety and how emotionally raw and vulnerable I felt .... probably like a startled rabbit caught in the headlights is the best way to describe it.

Kel's post reminded me of how far I've come along and I just felt the need to write and waffle away! :lol:

With thanks to you all xxxx

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Thank you Karen for writing this post,your an inspiration to so many.

Keep 'waffling away' as you put it:-D Your an extremely eloquent waffler. :-D

It's good to be reminded that we're not alone and that it's OK to feel the way we feel.

I used to think that when a day goes by without my thinking or being reminded in some way of what happened, then that would be the day I am back 'normal'! I now realise that 'normal for me is how I feel at present and am slowly coming to terms with the after effects of what has happened which thankfully keep improving. :-D

At 18 months post op I am still pushing the boundries and -yes- I crash and burn. I constantly need to reassure myself that I can do things. Had I a crystal ball which enabled me to see what recovery I would make then perhaps I would have been more patient but no matter how many times the medics told me I was only making it worse for myself it made no difference -like a moth to a flame:roll:

This time last year I couldn't walk far without feeling wiped out,crowds, busy streets or shops a nightmare and out of the question.My brain was having difficulty processing all the detail,the colours,noises movement rushed around my head making me dizzy and disorientated!

Panick attacks were a constant, anxiety a part of life,I constantly worried if my coils would stay in place.And I was terrified that what I was able to do then was as good as it would get!

Thankfully life hads improved dramatically and thank you for making me think about that Karen. Your timing is perfect.:wink:

Y

Edited by maggie
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Karen - As the others have said, thank you for that post. It was very well written and for those of us who are not quite there yet, most encouraging.

I am still filled with anger, anxiety & fears. I used to be a very positive person and quite mellow - I'm working on finding that person again. Your letter, and the others' posts after, give me hope to know I'm on the right track and eventually things WILL be better!:wink: I do know that I have made a lot of progess and am thankful for that.

This site has been very helpful for me as well. I do feel I can come here and know that others have gone through or are going through the same things, and understand.

Thank you for all the hard work you have put into BTG!:biggrin:

Carolyn

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Karen

I am glad that I helped kickstart a new thread for everyone! :)

It is always good to hear how others have battled the same or similar symptoms and good to know we are not alone, and what we are feeling is 'normal' and justified.

I was a bit taken-aback when my friend said I should just forget about what happened. She has been there for me all the way through, and visited me in both hospitals so knew what had been involved. To say you can or should just forget about it is a bit of a throwaway comment, and quite unrealistic I think.

Kel x

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Well, I'm glad that it's helped you guy's a little! :-D

Kel, sometimes people don't think and make the odd crass comment. Unless anybody has experienced the same, then they will never completely understand the impact and repercussions on a person. The trouble is with a brain injury, most of us look quite "normal" and to many, they can't understand why we're still not healed or still in shock after the event and seem to them, to be dwelling on it!

If the brain haem happened like yours, at a Christmas function, then it's pretty obvious to us on here, that it's perhaps going to be somewhere that you don't want to re-visit this year, as it's too raw for you. It doesn't mean that you won't in the future, but it will take time. Whatever you do, make the choice that's right for you and what you're comfortable with.

xx

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Hi Karen and guys

Funnily enough we were talking about this today as I'm exactly 4 years today! I was saying that I will never forget and the headaches, spots before my eyes and tiredness all help me to remember BUT things are much different now to before- I can now go out to the pub and 'cope' with noise and lights for a limited time and I have managed to return to work ft.

We all take huge steps but just don't relise it at the time. We areall an inspiration to each other. That is why this website is such a Godsend.

Thanks to everyone and love you all xx

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Hi Karen, your post was brilliant although it startled me a bit as all the posts from you I have read since I started looking at this site have been so helpful and so positive. This one was too, but it was also good to know you are not 'super woman' all the time and have the same worries and doubts as myself (although yours seem to be more under control, to your credit).

I do still think you are 'super woman' and amazing in what you have achieved personally and in relation to helping everyone who posts on here but it also made me feel better to realise that even someone like you has reflective days. Thank you xx

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Hi GG,

Am definitely not Super Woman, believe you me!:lol: ... just the same as the rest of you guys on here and went through and felt exactly the same things, as I see being posted on the forum today. The same struggles, worries etc., just that I've had more time to be able to adapt and come to terms with life.

I've had quite a few bleak and dark moments in the early years and knew that I had to find the positives and draw on them, no matter how small they were. Luckily, there was always something that I could find and I think that it was this, that kept my sanity intact! :wink:

Yep, I still do have the odd reflective moment as to what I've achieved and it does me good to remember how far I've come. Often when I read other members posts, it feels as though it could have been me writing it. On occasions, I do look back at my early posts too and thankfully find myself quite unrecognisable to how I am now.

xx

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Hi Karen,

I think you should run a poll on how many members on here think you ARE the modern day post SAH superwoman!

The only person who would be surprised by the overwhelmingly positive outcome would be you! You are an inspiration to all of us. You have an amazing balance of having been there and done that whilst still encouraging others to never give up hope and helping them see that their own outcome may be even better - and seeing where you are now will keep that hope alive for many.

Credit where it is due! Take care, M x

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A pause for reflection; It is nearly six years and life has got rosier and more positive but I live it everyday and I’m most definitely not who I used to be! In the early days of recovery, I felt like an alien. I still have part of me missing. My friend Jayne reminded me today how far I have come. She used to rehabilitate patients with head injuries in the States, so when she first met me walking the dog, she knew instantly I had suffered a brain trauma, of some description, as she said, I spoke utter b*ll*cks! Now I am fully intelligible, engaging and ‘with it’. I do find I laugh much more…my sense of humour seems enhanced…maybe that’s a sign of contentment or madness!

But it has been a solemn reminder of how short & fragile this life is and how we must rise up, keep with the struggle to heal and piece ourselves together to become whole again.

Kel, it was very sad to hear what your friend said…forgive her as she wasn’t thinking! Anyhow, no-one would understand except those who’ve walked in your shoes, as we have.

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Well said, Anya! I like the bit about talking utter b*ll*cks :lol:

Here's to all us Superwomen and Supermen :)

By the way, here's to the gals on here: "I am superwoman. Yes I am (Yes she is) Even when I'm a mess, I still put on a vest with an S on my chest"....

See the video

Edited by JayKay
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Anya - I totally agree with JayKay! Well said! ;) and also loved the bit about talking utter b*ll*cks!!! :lol: :lol:

x

Jen - didn't know that song by Alicia Keys but it's a good one! :)

x

I am finding at the moment that people are asking how I am doing quite frequently, and I say I am doing okay but get really tired (must get to bed earlier really!) and I get the answer "yeah, don't we all get tired" ...mmmm... Yeah cos it's just the same kind of tiredness as I used to get before having a brain injury! :roll: I will continue to smile knowingly and just imagine the reply I would like to make, not printable on here thou...

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Life if anything gets harder as the years progress, you will see an improvement post SAH but there will come a time when there is no more progress to be made. You have to learn to accept what your life is, and what you are capable of. Without that acceptance there will only be resentment of what you are left with. Some will make a "recovery" that is almost complete, others will be left with a "scar" from their SAH that will never fade.

Although we all start our journey with a SAH we will never all make the same trek with the same problems, we are all different.

Having said that we all share a common experience that we can look and see in others the same rough map that we have navigated. In all my years post SAH the one thing that I have learnt is acceptance. Acceptance of what I am left with, what my experience has meant to others and acceptance of where I find myself now.

Seven years on my experiences will be completely different to all of yours, but yet with enough in common to form a bond. We almost all share the same hardships yet all of us have a different outcome from where we started.

Talking complete *******s now so will sign off.

Scott

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