none of the front-page photos include me.

after my accident, i felt like a non-person. the neurological absence of the things i did and liked previously made me realize how much of them existed so that i could get what i wanted out of the world. i'm talking about facial expressions, intonation, socialization, fashion, opinions, and "interests".

then my medical team discharged me from rehab, saying MY RECOVERY HAD plateAued. i couldn't be helped. SO I HAVE TO FIND A WAY TO BE HAPPY WHICH DOESN'T INCLUDE BEING A HIGH-PERFORMING BADASS?

ACCEPTING MY APPARENT LIFE SENTENCE TO DISABILITY FELT IMPOSSIBLE BECAUSE I HAD NEVER KNOWN HOW TO FEEL GOOD ABOUT MYSELF WITHOUT ACHIEVEMENT AND EXTERNAL AFFIRMATION. i guess as a child i felt very lonely and coped by acquiring affirmation which came as a result of success.

DURING THESE EXTREME MOMENTS i vowed to never consciously participate in such ego-affirming activities again.
Today I sit somewhere between that over-compensation and a realization that i became that person to survive - it's the brain's natural process and i deserve to forgive myself.

i'll give you this.