Answers

For years I went with an undiagnosed brain injury that almost ended my life in 2016/2017. The months following my close shave left my brain unable to understand or process the changes taking place in my body. My brain couldn’t even form relevant questions to ask my doctor that a uninjured person would find easy to articulate. Over the last two years, I’ve done a lot of research and studying of the human brain and nervous system. My determination for answers regarding why my body nearly shut down was and is the driving force behind all my extensive studying.

My prayers have been that God leads me to someone else who has also experienced near death due to nervous system collapse.

Yesterday my mama related to me having met a young lady in a wheelchair while she was at her chiropractic appointment who told Mama of her health journey. This lady mentioned having five kids, and a central nervous system issue/disease (I’m not clear on that) that almost shut her down because she had entered into the dreaded unhealthy parasympathetic state. I have never met anyone who had gone through the same horrific trial and couldn’t believe my ears! In 2017, after an extensive hair analysis test, results came back stating my nervous system was indeed in the parasympathetic state known as the “rest and digest” state of the body. This state can be good but in extreme cases the unhealthy parasympathetic state is dangerous which indeed I was in. The two branches of our autonomic nervous system, sympathetic and parasympathetic, work together to keep us alive. My sympathetic was pretty much gone and my body was struggling hard to stay alive in the parasympathetic state.

This lady was probably more far gone than I was because she had lost the ability to swallow. But here is the good news: she started going to the same specialist as I am and now she too is recovering!!

This news is so hopeful and encouraging to me as I’ve not encountered anyone who nearly kicked the bucket from nervous system collapse. Or who has gone through these cranial adjustments either which is not very well known of.

I want to meet her. I’m thinking of leaving a note for my doctor to give her so she can contact me. I know with doctor/patient confidentiality it may not work but I hope so. God may indeed use this lady to give me some much needed answers!

Much love,

Viv

You Don’t Look Sick

Has this been said to you? Those of us chronically ill or injured have probably been given this all too common line, “You don’t look sick.” Or how about this one, “Well, you look good!”*

If we look sick, we are sick, if we don’t look sick we aren’t. Right? No!

Most people have five senses; taste, touch, see, smell, and hear. Now, we can mistakenly use our sense of sight to judge someone’s sense of touch.

An injured brain can not be seen. The brain is enclosed by the skull and a protective water layer called dura matter (both of which are damaged on me). Injured brains are felt.

Fatigue can not be seen, it’s felt.

We can’t judge a person’s sense of feeling based on our sense of sight.

This is why invisible illness is so misjudged ending up with the ill feeling very much alone.

I met a lady in my brain injury group whose teenage son suffered a severe traumatic brain injury after being struck by a car and then run over by a second car which dragged his body underneath it before stopping. When she arrived at the hospital she told me he looked to her like an alien. His brain was actually visible and he was so beyond recognition, she could only identify him based on the fact that he bit his nails which was the only recogizable part of him. This is probably the worst case of TBI I have ever heard of, and by some miracle, her son survived his brain injury but with many many deficits.

Yet, this is not the norm. TBI is typically an invisible malady. It effects all of life in so many various aspects most of which go unseen to onlookers. TBI is felt. Chronic fatigue is felt. Autoimmune diseases are felt.

We want to be well. We don’t want to wake up every day wondering what we have to do to just barely get by. We don’t want to tell our best friend we can’t receive her visit because we are too weak. We hate missing church. We want to get up, feet hit the ground running and get everything done while having strength and energy to play with our kids and make chocolate cake for dessert.

Not all ilnesses are visible, rather, they are hidden inside the intricate workings of our very fragile bodies that can easily become disfunctional living in this fallen world. While we may not look sick, believe me when I say we are bravely fighting every day and never, ever giving up….. and are courageously smiling and enduring through the pain.

Much love,

Viv 😍

*This post was written a long time ago. I’m no longer frustrated over the way people respond to invisible illness, but I still feel this post holds a few valuable insights worth sharing with others. ~Viv