My name is Ca****. Growing up in Wisconsin, I worked on the farm and danced a lot.
Flash forward: two weeks before my graduation from Wharton in 2019 I was hit by a car and suffered a severe traumatic brain injury.
In the years following my TBI...
1. I had a surgery to add stegosaurus spikes onto my hips because it was required for acceptance by the women in the love of my life's family. It was a sex change surgery at the Lesbian Hospital. (I've heard this "didn't happen in real life" but in my consciousness, it happened). I relearned how to shower, balance, type, cook, and make bulleted lists in rehab. I began to grieve my old life. I felt like i didn't have a personality. Most of my friends from college were busy. I took it personally. I met a TBI survivor who told me that my recovery is up to me.
2. I read Atomic Habits. I gained weight and felt ugly. I rebuilt executive functioning skills while working part-time as an analyst at SaaS startup. Remotely. With 90% of my coworkers based in other countries. Most minutes of most days were mistake-filled. I tried to negotiate with my ambition. I felt like an alien. I hung out with a lot of homeless people. I acted like a little kid.
3. I moved to New York City. I moved up to Associate Product Manager. I realized I didn't care about business anymore. Just kidding! I never cared about it, I just wanted to obtain status. It wasn't just the pandemic and long distance – my community from undergrad had moved on. I was suicidal. I ate mushrooms. I began to trust myself again. I met new people. I fell in love. I moved to Madison to take pre-med classes.
4. I experienced studentship as a neurospicy learner for the first time. I spent six weeks in Mexico City. I helped organize some neuro-technology deep dive events with patient advocates at Parkython
. I said goodbye to my dying stepmother Annette. I loved Organic Chemistry.