One year ago today, I nearly died.
February 27, 2015, I got carbon monoxide poisoning from my fireplace, causing me to pass out for over twenty minutes & get a concussion by hitting my head on the adjacent log holder.
It’s been a long year. I’ve had to learn to live with some pretty yukky symptoms that are most likely permanent. Some are embarrassing, too- my brain doesn’t function so well anymore & I feel stupid often now. Yet, even so, some good has come from this experience. I’m very grateful for the good things!
I’ve realized that life truly can change in an instant. It’s not just a cliche! In only one day, I became a different person. Knowing how suddenly things can change or your life can end has given me a new perspective.
I want to enjoy whatever time I have left in my life as much as possible. I love doing little things that bring me joy such as drinking herbal tea more often or lighting candles.
I don’t want to take anyone for granted- that is an extremely hurtful thing to do to someone & it can steal your joy.
Neither do I want to take anything for granted. I’m enjoying things more now than I used to. I’m wearing my favorite expensive perfume often even if my plans are only watching a movie at home. I wear the most comfortable & cutest pajamas I can find since they make me feel good, & spend plenty of time in them (yes, even in the afternoon if the mood strikes!).
I have gained a better perspective & sweat the small stuff much less than I once did. Little things really aren’t worth the energy & stealing of joy.
I listen to my favorite music more, too- not only is it good for brain health, but it is good for the mood.
I’m working on being more open with people by paying complements more freely. I’ve always been quiet so it’s not easy to talk more sometimes, but it’s worth it to see other people happy to hear some kind words.
I’m avoiding people I’m not as comfortable with & setting firmer boundaries with them. I’ve lost friendships, too, which although it may sound sad, really isn’t necessarily a bad thing. I only want real, caring people in my life now. I have zero patience for those who only talk about themselves & never ask how I’m doing.
I also try to push myself out of my comfort zone more often. Granted, with C-PTSD, that isn’t an easy task, but I at least try. Even if I fail, it makes me feel accomplished knowing I tried. I recently went out alone to the grocery store, car wash & a craft store one afternoon. Having agoraphobia, this is a real challenge. I was in a panic by the time I was done my final stop, but at least I did it!
I’m trying new things, or even old things I long ago gave up. I loved drawing as a child, & started doing it again right after I got sick & was recovering. I’m not that great at it, but it’s fun to do. I also have started tinkering with photography, since one of my best friends ever gave me a wonderful camera.
Best of all, I also talk with God much more than I once did. Constantly, in fact. Rarely any semblance of an elaborate prayer, just normal conversation, like a daughter talking with her Father. Our relationship is much closer than it once was, & the things that have come out of it are amazing. God has given me many dreams that show me helpful information on my life. He’s also given me answers to questions I’ve had for a long time. He’s even taught me a lot about narcissism, which obviously helps my writing. He has also helped to show me areas where I need to heal, & helped me to do so.
There is a point to all of this. Please don’t be foolish like I’ve been. Although I’ve always known you never know when your life will end, I never had the much better perspective I have now. I guess I’m a slow learner & it took a traumatic, life altering (nearly life ending) experience to wake me up. Please learn from me, & make similar changes to your life that I have, so you can enjoy your life more. Life can be short, & you don’t want to die with regrets. Use your good china. Burn that special scented candle you were saving for a special occasion. Tell the special people in your life you love them & why, & do it often. Crank up music you love & dance around your house like crazy. Life truly can change or even end in an instant. Make a decision today to enjoy whatever time you have to the fullest! xoxo