Six years ago tomorrow, I nearly died from carbon monoxide poisoning. Naturally, this was a life altering experience. I want to share some of what I learned with you.
Coming so close to death will make any person reevaluate their life. It certainly did me. However, doing that shouldn’t happen only due to such a traumatic experience. It’s important to take inventory of your life regularly. Doing so can be quite eye opening & encourage you to make some positive changes.
I learned acceptance is incredibly valuable. I don’t mean giving up, I mean accepting the situation for what it is. I had no idea of what to expect after leaving the hospital. The staff told me nothing other than what I experienced was no big deal. I was terrified & confused when I didn’t recover quickly. I learned all I could about carbon monoxide poisoning recovery & also about concussions because I still believe I got that too from hitting my head when the poison made me pass out. It was all pretty overwhelming! The list of possible symptoms a person can have after both carbon monoxide poisoning & concussions is as long as my arm. There also isn’t much hope of the symptoms healing. Many sources said that healing happens in the first 9-12 months, & if a symptom is still there after that time, chances of healing are very slim. Honestly, this was depressing & scary. I realized that I might as well accept them & work with them the best I can. Of course I still wanted to heal, but I also accepted that may not happen. Accepting that helped me to have more peace about the situation. It also helped me to accept other difficult things easier. Acceptance can be a powerful & helpful life skill!
I had to learn to work with my situation quickly, & that skill is incredibly useful. I make use of things that help me, such as a calendar on my phone to help with my lack of memory. I also am aware of my limits more now than I was before, & try to work with them. Whatever the situation, if you can learn to work with it that is a very good thing. Of course you can hope & pray the situation improves, but if you learn to work with it, if it doesn’t, you’ll be ok.
My situation also reminded me just how fast things can change in life & change drastically. Never, ever forget that! Remembering it will help you not to take things or even people for granted. Always remember to tell your loved ones how important they are to you & that you love them. Be free with complements, even to strangers. Little things like that not only make a person’s day, but what if those are the last words you say to someone? Wouldn’t you want to leave a person with such a lovely memory of you?
Since a situation can change so quickly, I’ve realized the value of enjoying every possible moment. There are many good things to enjoy in life, so why not enjoy them? Staying too busy isn’t good for your physical or emotional health anyway so why do it if you can avoid it? Plan as much time as you can for things you enjoy in life. I try to spend time each evening indulging in hobbies I like. In fact, I’ve noticed not doing this regularly makes me very anxious & depressed. A little time spent doing one of the crafts I enjoy is vital to my mental health. What hobbies do you enjoy that you can participate in often?
I know these life lessons are pretty simple & even common sense, but they’re also easy to forget. Life can be so distracting! Please try to remember them anyway & enjoy your life as much as possible!