Grab Life By The P***y

My son really needs to get out of the house and make some friends.

 

His views of the world and the current geopolitical climate are more than rudimentary…they’re damn close to an archaic level of barbaric. Oh, and he doesn’t have Facebook., or social media of any kind. They only thing he really likes doing on the internet is watching YouTube videos. And that’s no basis in which to form an educated opinion. This being cooped up is really getting to how he thinks and what he says. He demonstrates just how little he understands every time we talk.

To be fair, he is only one and a half. He can’t even form sentences. And his vocabulary leaves something to be desired. So I guess he gets a pass.

I’m unemployed. Graduate schools don’t want me. And I’m currently attending a trade school for a degree that’s more pragmatic than passionate.

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I’m basically a younger Jerry, from Rick and Morty. I guarantee you that I’ve had just as brilliant thoughts on breakfast cereal as he has.

 

So lemmie just tell you, I am having a FIELD DAY with the current election. Do you have any idea how awesome it is to have something else to focus on? Something that detracts from the inner shame and anxiety that are a constant threat to my daily functionality?
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Except there’s something altogether different about the distraction this time around, isn’t there? I can’t be the only one that feels it. This time there’s so SO much beyond the “them” that it’s so easily about, right? This time around, it really is about us.
shit-got-real

You can see it on Facebook, you can see it when you talk to people (or when people actively avoid talking about it). Something about when things get serious, our true natures come out.

Thankfully, we’re not short on knowing what people think, because everyone is sharing something.
And I fall in that sweet spot of being one of the lucky few who can make the claim that people should listen to me.
I’m white. And I’m a man.
I’m another white man with an asshole.
No, an opinion. I’m another white man with an opinion…I get those two confused all the time (assholes, opinions…everybody’s got one.).

So here’s my opinion on the whole debacle:

ARROGANCE is the single greatest threat to who we are and any interaction we may have with each other.

Let me preface this by saying a few things. For starters, I haven’t voted in this – or any – election since the first time I was allowed to vote. And I don’t have a pony in this race either. You will most certainly find critical posts of one side of this election, but you want find support for the other.
So please don’t assume that because I’m against one, I’m for the other. What I want to address is not either candidate, but how either candidate serves as a reflection of all of us.

Second. I know many would say that humility is an absence of arrogance, but I don’t believe arrogance to be substance. I believe it stems from a lack of substance, an emptiness, a void. Arrogance attempts to fill that void, or deny the void is even there; humility recognizes the void – and whats more – knows that nothing “natural” or occurring in this world can fill it (only something supernatural can).
So humility isn’t an absence of arrogance.
ARROGANCE is an absence of humility.

Lastly, I don’t equate ignorance to arrogance. Just as arrogance is an absence of humility, ignorance is an absence of truth (another void). However, when ignorance willfully chooses to not accept the truth when its present, and instead justifies and rationalizes itself, then ignorance becomes arrogance.

It’s ARROGANCE that assumes if you’re not on “our” side, then you’re on their side; if you’re not “for” us, then you’re for them.
If I’m not for republicans, then I’m for democrats. If I’m not Pro-Life, then I’m Pro-Abortion.
what
I’ve also been told that since I don’t have a side, and since I’m not voting, I don’t have permission to say anything. I don’t like watching football either, but I can tell you that the Broncos/Falcons game was pretty miserable.

It’s ARROGANCE that thinks voting is a duty, rather than a right.
I have a right to a lot of things in this country, and I exercise that right by not doing them. I have the right to own a gun and I don’t. Does NOT exercising my right to own a gun mean I’m forbidden to discuss gun control (more like, “Gun, Outta Control,” amIright?)?
Mike Rowe said it best: “There’s nothing virtuous or patriotic about voting just for the sake of voting…”

It’s ARROGANCE that says if you can’t change hearts, change laws.
This one is so fascinating to me because the same people that claim to be concerned with people’s hearts believe that the things they hold to be morally reprehensible should be illegal. It fascinates me because these are the people whose beliefs tell them they’re free from “the Law,” and yet the Law is what they want…not for them, mind you, but for those that aren’t them.
Further, I’ve also found these very same people oblivious to the fact that they speak out about things like Sharia Law when they themselves basically want a Christian version of Sharia Law.
st-dustin-law

 

It’s ARROGANCE that loudly states it’s Pro-Life, and yet is selective about which lives it’s “pro” for.
I can’t believe we have to argue about how it’s defined, but when it comes to the word, “life,” that should be completely unnecessary. Instead we should struggle over how we fight for life and wrestle with those complicated scenarios where it’s not an easy choice.
If you’re Pro-Life, but are annoyed or upset in any way by the Black Lives Matter movement, are you really Pro-Life? If you’re Pro-Life, but aren’t concerned about Syria, or don’t have compassion on its displaced people, are you really Pro-Life? Anytime you have to say, “I am Pro-Life, but…” you aren’t Pro-Life!*
(*And this isn’t even covering the theological aspect and connotation of Jesus calling Himself, “the Life,” or defining Life as “This is life, that they know you.” In which case, if you were really Pro-Life, you’d do everything you can to not hinder people from knowing God the father.)
So what is arrogance is if what you really are is Anti-Abortion, but think it more of a statement to be “proud of” to say you’re Pro-Life.

 

It’s ARROGANCE when in order to prove yourself right, others have to be wrong.
matilda
This seems to be central to the abortion debate, one which is already muddled by a lack of genuine understanding of the other side.
“The [Pro-Life] leadership is largely male, and most of the women involved have enjoyed lives of relative ease, in which they can sincerely experience each new life as a joy and gift. For these women, perhaps it is shocking and distressing to imagine ever seeking an abortion, because they’ve never been in a situation so dire as to make it look like a viable option.”
“The problem is, the people leading the discussion know very little about what’s going on in the culture where abortion emerges as a “choice,” except for in theory. The leaders of the pro-life movement are, primarily, well-educated middle-class white persons who have been almost completely insulated from the realm of abuse, poverty, and desperation in which this choice occurs. And because the leaders of the pro-choice movement are also well-educated middle-class white persons, it looks to the pro-life leaders as though abortion is being touted by smug comfortable women who obviously must just want to kill their babies for their own convenience. The conversation is happening on our TV screens, as men and women in expensive suits argue over podiums – or in academic journals publishing the findings of sociologists or ethicists writing from well-appointed offices. The reality is hidden from us.” (link to quote)

It’s ARROGANCE to have to even prove yourself right.
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There’s right, and there’s wrong. If you believe this, then it exists outside of you (or what’s called, “a universal truth.”). Universal truths do not have to be proven right to be right. They’re right regardless. When you believe it is on you to prove a universal truth, it becomes about you, and ceases to be about the universal truth. And when anything becomes about you, that’s arrogance.

It’s ARROGANCE that says it can only be done your way.
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Now understand that I didn’t say the “right” way. Because humility asks for help. And humility understands that people help in different ways. It’s arrogance that says if it’s not done your way, it’s wrong.

It’s ARROGANCE to be so caught up proving you’re right, that you forget your wrongs.
(See what I did there with the you’re and the your?)
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ARROGANCE is inconsistent. (In its logic, in its arguments, and just period)
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Arrogance will always argue to its favor. Whether it means one moment saying that someone’s personality or life choices don’t matter as long as they’re a good leader, then the next moment calling the other candidate a Satanist.
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Should it matter who she worships in her personal time as long as she’s a good leader?
I’m fighting to make America great again! But you know what, all guys talk like that and it’ll never change.
But don’t you want it to change??? Are you going to be okay hearing your son talk like that? If you don’t condemn it now, how great do you really want America to be???

It’s ARROGANCE that shames a person, and a country for something they aren’t a party of.
“That said, I believe it’s important for all of us to realize just how much trouble we’re in. After killing 58 million babies, America now faces impending divine judgment. There is no way out, no way back. The blood of 58 million babies is crying out for justice and they will get it.”
I said before that I carry a lot of shame. I struggle with it. But I didn’t kill 58 million babies.
ricky-bobby-evil
And what’s more, this isn’t how God’s judgment works. Seriously, this was the same logic of the Dark Ages. They believed they were facing diving judgment then too. Come on, people, we’re better than this.

 

It’s ARROGANCE that says there hasn’t been damage done, or that it won’t take a long time to repair it.
And it’s not just the political system itself. I’m talking about political parties that no one in the next generation is going to support. And I’m talking about religious institutions that then go on to wonder why they’re failing to reach people.

It’s ARROGANCE that despite everything telling you to adjust your mindset, you continue to “vote party, not person.”
To actively be shown someone that goes against everything you believe as a person, but still believe voting for the opposing party is worse? Really?

ARROGANCE does whatever it can to seem strong rather than admit that it’s afraid and/or confused.
We’re a nation of people that are hurting. We’re a world that’s hurting.
We’re broken.
And that’s not an easy thing to accept. It scares us, and confuses us. And I get why so many try however they can to avoid anything that reminds them of that fact. Every morning I open my phone and look specifically at film news, I look at io9’s “Morning Spoilers,” and I look at Screenrant. Throughout the day, I’m consistently avoiding all the thoughts about what’s wrong with my life (which is hard to do when everywhere you look you’re reminded you’re unemployed, your family is barely making ends meet from month to month, and none of what you hoped for is panning out).
I don’t understand it, and it scares me.
And it’s way easier to just say that God is punishing me with his righteous judgment because of my beliefs. Or that God hates me because I’m a false prophet.
At least that would be an answer…

It’s ARROGANCE that presumes it can do something like hide truths from the American people and get away with it.
And if and when the American people do find out, to justify it. Anything brought to the light becomes light. And light is good, it just can blind and hurt for a bit until we adjust our eyes to it.

It’s ARROGANCE that opposes a behavior, only until it’s caught with its own pants down.
Bill Clinton’s sexual behavior is immoral! Impeach him! Get him out of office!
Oh…Donald Trump is just, “one of the guys,” and guys are like that…Put him in office!

It’s ARROGANCE THAT EQUATES BRAGGING ABOUT SEXUAL ASSAULT TO *MERE* MISOGYNY.
And it’s arrogance that assumes every male talks like that.

 

And ultimately, it’s ARROGANCE THAT THINKS IT HAS THE RIGHT TO GRAB ANYTHING BY ITS GENITALS.

My kid doesn’t understand these things. And even if I tried explaining it to him, I’d have about as much success as I would someone who believes this is the ultimate battle between good and evil, heaven and hell. It’s about as messed up as being in a hoedown from a Pauly Shore film…which is a modern way of saying it’s like being in Lovecraft’s Mountains of Madness.

But it’s important that when he can understand them, I’m able to explain why it’s so wrong, and what we can do to combat it.
Or maybe I just need to stop feeling like I need to speak, need to speak up, need to have my voice heard, and just concentrate on raising him, on loving him.
Because I have a feeling that it’s less about him hearing it, and more about me saying it.

It’s less about convincing others, and more about being heard.

It’s less about being a voice for those that don’t have one, and more about simply knowing your own voice is heard.

Maybe I’m still just that silenced middle schooler in back of the bus, and all I want is to know I have a voice, and it is heard…

And maybe I’m just as arrogant in my own way, because being loved and loving those in my life isn’t good enough for me; isn’t enough for me.

Because LOVE is that supernatural thing that fills the void.

And it’s just as much arrogance to not allow yourself to be loved, as it is to deny or get upset when someone tells you that your main goal is to do so: to be loved and to loved.

Christians: they’ll know what you are by what?

Humanity: is there any reason to feel arrogant when you know you’re loved? Is there anything you have to fight when you feel you have worth just as you are?

So to my son, I’m sorry I trap myself. I’m sorry that I don’t allow myself to just be present and enjoy you. You’re worth me putting down my laptop, and my phone, and getting out of my head.
I want to do better. I want to live life with you and go out there and grab it by the…*ahem*…

And I promise, I’ll only work on this when you’re taking a nap.

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What Do You Say When No One Has Ears to Hear?

It’s been the span of just one month (at the time of writing this), and the amount of horrific tragedies having occurred all over the world have been nothing short of countless (while nothing compared to the amount that this entire year has wrought).
I say countless, not because these events have been innumerable, but because even just ONE of them is ONE TOO MANY.

It’s felt as if the whole world has just been soaked—steeped, like a bag of tea—in chaos; in darkness; utterly in a void.

And it didn’t take long for the Internet…well, social media, to follow suit. What I’ve witnessed it become, I can only describe to be some sort of collective madhouse serving to accomplish nothing but an overwhelming—damn near deafeningcacophony.

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Articles and blog posts after articles and blog posts after articles and blog posts.
Politicians and speeches.
Articles and blog posts about politicians and their speeches.
Tweets.
Facebook posts.
Facebook profile picture changes.
And all theLikes.” Ohhh, all the “Thumbs Ups” Facebook “Likes” and “Shares” and “Repostings” and “Thoughts and prayers,” after, “thoughts and prayers,” after, “thoughts and prayers.”

loud noises

And for reasons I’ll elaborate further on in time, through it all I’ve remained…uncomfortably silent. Not because I have nothing to say (quite the contrary, in fact), but rather, for motivations I’ve felt to be considerably significant.

I’ve remained silent because it’s been abundantly clear that EVERYONE has something to say…and NO ONE really seems to be doing any listening.

It’s as if whenever our world is steeped into the VOID, the only thing we ever find ourselves doing is nothing; nothing but stand at its precipice, and scream, and shout, and cuss, and cry out, all of it, into that VOID.
And it just feels like it accomplishes NOTHING.
I have seen so so much of people’s hearts hurting, aching, breaking, for all the suffering and tragedy and loss that has repeatedly occurred within this span of just one short month. Now whether these emotions are genuine or just for show is not for me to say; though I will state with certainty that I believe there is an unmistakeable distinction between having a big heart, and having a heart in the right place. And please don’t misunderstand me here, I am by no means criticizing (nor calling into question) anyone’s sentiment, anyone’s heart, and anyone who has found themselves on that precipice screaming and shouting and cursing and crying. Nor am I just cynically ranting about the pointlessness of social media and all that it entails (the fact is not lost on me that this very piece represents exactly what I’m eluding to…).
But rather, I am sincerely expressing the personal struggle I’m having with a question as difficult for me to find an answer to, as it is for me to just simply find the correct words in the correct order to correctly word the question itself. And it is a question I long to have answered both for my own selfish reasons, but also in hopes of righting all this wrong I’ve seen in response to the world unavoidably spewed and spewed and spewed all over the internet.

And I’m as much asking myself these questions (if not genuinely so much more), as I am positing them to you.

When you stand at the precipice—filled with emotion that you’re just longing to express—and you scream and shout and spit and cuss and cry into the VOID, just WHAT IS THE POINT.

What do you do when it seems as if NOTHING you say or do seems to make ANY difference?

What do you say when all you see is no one listening?

I mentioned before that through everything that has occurred recently, I’ve found myself in a place of tense silence. And to be fair, much of it had to do with timing, and a preoccupation with caring for my infant son. But the fact remains that these questions have plagued me long before thematically outlining this piece. As I said, I’ve personally had many thoughts about so much of what has transpired these past weeks, coupled with a desire to write them all out (I even had a clever, kitschy title summarizing what I wrote, “Teething, Terrorists, Trump, and Troubles.”).
What stopped me? Well initially I’d like to say that because no one asked my opinion or thoughts, I really didn’t give a damn about sharing anything.

And I know that there is at least a part of that remaining.

But the bulk of what’s been holding me back are those very questions I listed above.

When it feels as if all I’m doing is shouting into the VOID—when all I am doing is nothing more than adding to that VOID, WHAT IS THE POINT.

When I struggle with believing that NOTHING I do seems to make ANY difference, what is there for me to do?

And ultimately, regardless of anything I might have to say…about anything, when the response appears to be as if NO ONE has “ears to hear,” WHAT IS THE POINT of saying anything?

… … …

I’m not sure if I’ve ever heard the phrase “ears to hear,” anywhere other than in a Biblical context; “for those who have ears to hear, let them hear.” Though it’s a phrase that I’ve easily glossed over time and time again when reading Scripture, I’ve become enamored with it, because it truly captures both the simplicity and sincerity that lay at the heart of genuine Christianity like magic from fairytales being both the same and different, hard enough to build a foundation, but fluid enough that you never can quite think you’ve got them all figured out.

For those who have ears to hear, let them hear.

Simple and straightforward.
A phrase I’ve always (or, at least until recently) taken at face value.

Jesus is recorded frequently finishing whatever he was speaking with that phrase: “for those who have ears to hear, let them hear.” And THE closest I think I come to understanding it is essentially saying, “for those of you that are truly actually paying attentionfor those of you that are truly actually listeningYOU’LL get what I’m saying.

I quite often find myself easily bombarded by a mess of bright and spastic, overwhelming visuals that…I fail to really see.

And even more frequently do I find myself comfortably consumed by the cacophony of long winded explanations and pompous justifications that…I fail to really listen.
When I find myself staring at the VOID too long? That’s all I start to believe.

And voids are anything BUT simple, and anything BUT sincere.

For those who have ears to hear, let them hear.

What is the simplicity promised within these words?
What is the sincerity promised within them?

What are the words?

Echō ous akouō akouō(!)

Echō (G2192: to have, hold)
ous (G3775: the ear, ears)
akouō (G0191: hearing, to hear, listen)

Echō ous akouō, akouō(!)
Whenever Jesus finished with these four words, it was never a conditional statement.

It was a PROMISE!* (*Yes, exclamation point included.)

Jesus wasn’t concluding by saying, “for those of you actually listening, you’ll get it.”
No, Jesus was making a promise:

Oh listening ears, listen!*”

(*rf. Greek grammatical notes on Matt. 11:15)

Were there those ears that didn’t listen? Of course there were.
And neither is it any different today. There are those that just DO NOT LISTEN.

There are those who—for whatever reason—cannot hear the “Word(s) of God,” instead hearing only thunder*, and there may very well continue to be so.

(*rf. John 12:28-30)

There have been—and may always be—“children” in loud, busy marketplaces, willfully and firmly placing their fingers in their ears and making whatever cacophony possible in order to drown out the music that would compel them to dance; who preoccupy themselves with countless distractions of their own design so as to never hear the “dirge” and mourn; simply and sincerely, mourn*.

(*rf. Matt. 11:16,17)

The reality of the world we live in seems far too clear:

EVERYONE has something to say, and yet NO ONE is listening.

EVERYONE has enormous hearts, but enormous hearts that have become hardened and calloused.

There have been, and always will be, people who make so much noise—who make the most noise—not out of a desire for themselves to be heard. No. We all have that desire, and not all of us struggle with it that way. There have been and always will be people who make as much noise as they can solely (dare I say spitefully?) to KEEP TRUTH OUT. Whether it’s truth in the form of thunder, or truth much less in the form of a whisper, even a whisper sharp enough to cut through prideful, arrogant, opinionated, cacophony.
There have been, always will, and may even currently be, people you know, people you’re related to, people on Facebook, and people staring at you every time you look in the mirror, who boisterously spout off their views and opinions not because they long to have them heard—not because THEY long to be heard—but because in doing so, they effectively deafen themselves, drowning out anything and everything else…especially truth.
Because truth isn’t safe.
Because truth can (and quite often times does) hurt.
Because truth quite literally forces us to face an end of ourselves, the end of ourselves.

But at the end of ourselves is something so much bigger, and—trulyso much better.

The truth of the matter…the truth of ALL matterthe truth of everything THAT matters is this:

We ALL have ears to hear, and those ears were MADE TO HEAR.

And whether you’re unable to hear due to impairment, or due to affliction, out of violence, or out of fear; or whether you’re unable to hear because you’ve spitefully crammed your fingers in your ears and are screaming at the top of your lungsJesus made a promise that ALL WILL HEAR.
And I may not be able to convey in detail and with certainty just HOW that promise will be kept, I do know He’s pretty good at keeping His promises…at keeping His Word.

Oh, and when He does make due on His promise?

That moment ALWAYS tends to be enough to melt hearts and get EVERYONE listening:


What else is there to leave you with but this:

Echō ous akouō, akouō(!)
“OH, You listening ears, LISTEN!”

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It’s Times Like These You’ve Just Gotta Say, When In “Post Concussive SyndROME”

…still don’t quite understand what that phrase means…

Where to start…

While I can be very good at playing my cards close to the chest (well, to not give myself that much credit, I’ll say that it’s certain cards I’m very good at playing close to the chest)—to keep things hidden, private—it just seems to be an unshakeable, unchangeable part of my nature to be completely open and vulnerable with damn near anyone one I have the pleasure of interacting with. To bare me. Good, bad, and ugly. And another part of my nature that I just can’t seem to alter? It comes incredibly easier to bare the bad and the ugly of and in me—to convey and share all my faults—than it does for me to share what’s quote unquote, good (yes, I wrote out quote unquote rather than simply putting quotation marks. It was a stylistic choice to emphasize my point, and I have the freedom as a writer to use it, godammit.).

That being said, for whatever reason that it’s so easy for me to share the bad and the ugly and all my faults and eccentricities—and beyond that, to share what I’ve learned from them, by them, and everything associated with them—I cannot for the life of me convey just what it’s like to be me. That is, to think how I think, feel how I feel, and struggle with what just what struggle life is like for me on a day in and day out basis.

Perhaps that’s why I get so emotional when I come across any form of media on the internet where someone who shares in my…afflictions…my…struggles…my…daily challenges I constantly face with what feels like no sense of relief. My emotional reaction has nothing to do with a sense of camaraderie that I feel with these individuals. When I’m faced with an article, or a video, or some such piece of media that makes me bawl up and ball up, it doesn’t stem from a heartfelt thought that I’m “not alone in what I feel and struggle with,” (though I both don’t see anything wrong with that, and am truly encouraged that there are other individuals out there that share struggles with my own) no, I break down emotionally because I’m finally facing and hearing my struggles and my difficulties through words and conveyances with a clarity and articulation that I could never have expressed myself.

Like some “out-of-body experience,” I’m witnessing everything I wish for people to know—no, to understand—about my struggles, expressed in such a way that makes such sense; in a way that I believe everyone, in whatever way they are related to me, can understand.
In a way that just…clicks.
In a way that I hope translates to a better, more rounded, and honestly—cards on the table, here—more sympathetic understanding of me as a whole.

Which is why after seeing this latest video, I feel so inclined to share it.

Lemmie back up a bit and give some background here first.
If you weren’t aware, I was involved in an auto accident on 13.August. My infant son and I were rear-ended by an F-150 going between 30-45mph while we were at a complete stop.
On the surface, with both damage to the car, and injuries sustained, everything appeared rather minimal. We were able to drive ourselves to the ER to get checked out, and thankfully my son checked out just fine at the ER and has been since, suffering only a pretty good scare. And I, looked to have just sustained some whiplash, sprained wrist, hurt shoulder, and general other discomforts.

Then came a couple days later. The car—drivable to this point, though the backside body was evidently damaged—suddenly ceased to start. Come to find out that the impact completely damaged the fuel pump (amongst other technical parts I don’t know or care to explain).

I myself went for a followup appointment with Primary Care, where it was deduced that the force of the impact no doubt caused my shoulder to dislocate, and—more than that, the impact was great enough that the dislocation could (and did) possibly damaged the ligaments in my arm. Further, I had (have) sciatica in both legs, and back pain that just won’t quit.

This was the initial diagnosis. All physical. Because I didn’t hit my head, nor did I ever lose consciousness during the accident.

I was put on leave from work for three weeks so as to give my body time to heal.

Flash forward to when I start work again. (And, I cannot emphasize this enough, this begins the heart of all of what I’m getting at.) I’m noticing all sorts of symptoms that I did not anticipate to be the case upon returning.
And they don’t go away.
In a desperate act to find out what’s going on, I post the following question to Facebook:

facebook

And then I begin noticing more and more stuff that started to worry me. I forgot my wife’s phone number…consistently. I had trouble remembering a lot of things, in fact.  And attempting to do so cause that pulsating pressure headache to flare up. I couldn’t do puzzles or math correctly, and if I focused too hard, that pulsating pressure headache would flare up again.
Soooo…I schedule another appointment with Primary Care. This time addressing everything I’m feeling neurologically—which is affecting the rest of me physically.

And then came the exams…
And after that, the diagnosis.

Not only did I sustain a concussion from the accident, but I fall into a small category of concussive victims who get (or have) what’s called Post Concussive Syndrome. It’s convoluted, and I still don’t fully get it, but from what I was told, those with this diagnosis maintain the symptoms of a concussion for any given time-frame…indefinitely.
If you’re confused as I was, my doc explained it this way: with the impact of the accident, the force was so strong that it not only caused my shoulder to dislocate, but in the process of dislocating, that force on my arm and shoulder damaged ligaments. It wasn’t as if my shoulder just popped out. It popped out with enough force to damage all the ligaments that attach it together.
With that in mind, he then explained how that same force impacted my noggin. I may not have hit my head, but my head did fly forward with the same force that threw my shoulder out (hence the whiplash). And because I told the ER that I didn’t hit my head, nor lose consciousness, they didn’t check for any neurological damage.

So that’s where I’m at.
No…that’s the start of where I’m at. And that’s where I come back around to certain parts of the internet explaining things far better than I can. Because just where am I at? Well just tonight—at work—after a particularly difficult day physically, mentally, but especially emotionally, I came across this video. And after watching it, crying, wiping away tears so I could help customers, I came to the conclusion that this was the best any only way to share what’s going on. If you only watch through her description of Post Concussive Syndrome, and what it’s like, that’s good enough. I’m not looking for how best to “deal with” me in this condition.
My goal is what I stated in the beginning of this post.

And so we begin with VIDEO #1 showcasing my neuroses:

Here’s the problem, I don’t just have Post Concussive Syndrome. That’s not the only neurological diagnoses that I’ve been given.
I’ve been diagnosed with adult ADD—Attention Deficit Disorder.

I’ve also been diagnosed with OCD—Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (or, as I joke, CDO…because that’s the letters alphabetized, AS THEY SHOULD BE…). And if you think you understand what OCD is, I encourage you to go check out the following article:
http://themighty.com/2015/02/i-have-ocd-this-is-what-its-like-to-be-in-my-mind-for-3-minutes2/

Buuuut…if you don’t want to read, on to VIDEO #2 of my neuroses showcase:

Lastly, I suffer from anxiety and panic attacks. Now this is one of those things that I tend to be able to hide pretty well…this is a set of cards I’m very good at playing close to the chest. But just because I don’t show it, does not mean that the emotional state is not there raging inside of me. For the most part, I think you can tell when my anxiety kicks up and I’m suffering a panic attack because certain “ticks” of my OCD go full throttle.

But in case you’re wondering what I’m feeling on the inside—regardless of what my exterior may present, VIDEO #3 should give a very clear image of what someone goes through:

So that’s where I’m at.

Here it is almost two weeks after being diagnosed with Post Concussive Syndrome;
here it is almost three weeks of being back to work—almost two since being diagnosed with Post Concussive Syndrome;
here it is, two weeks of toughing it out working in an environment that is completely and utterly not conducive to my condition.
Here I am—being told that the only remedy is rest, both physically and mentally—struggling to follow through with doctor’s orders.

Because honestly, how can I.

And I mean to genuinely ask: how can I?
And I’m not just talking about an inability to not work due to financial reasons. I’m talking about with a mind like mine,
How.
Can.
I.
Rest?
My mind is constantly racing from one thing and thought to another thanks to my ADD.
There’s a lack of order EVERYWHERE which flares up my OCD.
I’ve realized that not having things in the sense of order that I need makes my head ache and I get dizzy and feel light headed and nauseous now thanks to the Concussion symptoms.
So now my OCD is in overdrive simply to keep my PCS symptoms at bay.
All of this—the thoughts, the questions, the struggling with order and my own physical well being and people depending on me and needing to get better which means needing to rest but I can’t rest because I have so much that needs to get done and only I can do it and there’s no way out so there is no rest which means there won’t be recovery which means I’m stuck where I’m at indefinitely with no way out and no help out and all this pressure pressure pressure on me—all of it then flares up my anxiety and causes panic to kick in which then flares up my OCD more so then I need organization all while my ADD won’t let go of the thought that I need to just stop and get some rest but I can’t just go to sleep and I don’t know why which keeps me up even more which only exacerbates the lack of getting rest bit which then exacerbates the anxiety because I’m scared shitless about not being able to take care of myself and does anybody care? why would they? they have no reason to. and so is this why I’m writing this in hopes of giving reason to care, to look at me differently, to know, to understand, to sympathize with all of this struggle that’s bringing me to a Jack Kerouac style rant as tears fill my eyes and cause my glasses to fog up staring at a screen after 1am while my wife and son are asleep and all I want to do is go to bed but I can’t because I’m not sure if that’s at all what I really want or if all I really want is to be held and to know that it’s okay and I’m okay and all this pressure pressure pressure that I feel from EVERYONE whether they intend to or not is literally mixing me up so much inside that I can’t even convey what I feel besides sharing the videos and saying that now I’m thinking of the Eve 6 song, “Inside Out,” and all I want is to just be free to rest…truly rest…even if rest comes from oblivion, at least it would be rest, but I can’t rest.
I can’t do anything right now but try to finish this post. Because every part of me feels like it is a necessity, every part of me feels like I have to.


But I don’t have to.

Maybe now…here, now, in this sentence, in this line, after everything that just came before, THIS is where I’m truly at.
I don’t really know where that is…
And I don’t really know what my goal in writing this is anymore. I know what I initially sought. I said it in the beginning: understanding…perhaps compassion…sympathy. But right now? Now I don’t know.
Perhaps you can tell me. What was the point.

For now, now I have finally come to the end (of this at least).
And it’s time to lay down in my bed and hope and see—just hope and see—if I can truly get some rest.

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