During the last 2+ years, since being hit by a driver of an SUV while I was riding my bicycle, I was advised on a lot of things – a lot of important things. There was lots of medical and dental advice, and I’m thankful for it. There was quite a bit of legal advice, and I’m thankful for that too. But there was some advice I never received: You need to account for the mental and emotional toll.
I spent so much of my time focused on the “next step” in my recovery that I neglected the mental and emotional side of the equation. I felt “OK” – or so I thought. All attention was paid to the physical and legal components of recovery, and meanwhile, I was pushing forward on near empty without realizing it. I never saw a counselor. I never talked to anyone who asked me questions that would press me a bit beyond, “how’s your body healing?” The doctors I saw never advised me to talk to anyone or to at least be aware of some potential pitfalls beyond the physical. I’m starting to realize that all that trauma, all that stress that comes with recovering from such an event over many months, and all that pressure I put on myself to “get back to normal ASAP” has caught up to me.
I don’t write this to lay blame on anyone. I’m writing this for those who may come across this post as they struggle through their own recovery. Go talk to a counselor. Go talk to someone who will ask questions that friends and family aren’t likely to ask because they don’t even know to ask them. Acknowledge the struggle is beyond what you feel physically, the endless appointments, the non-stop focus on getting back to “normal”. You likely won’t even realize you need to talk to someone, but you do.
I’m capturing my journey towards recovery after being hit by an SUV while riding my bicycle on February 8th, 2014. I’ve learned quite a bit along the way and want to share those lessons. I’m not a doctor, lawyer, or any other sort of expert in this area. Any insights I provide along the way should be taken as my insights to my particular situation. In other words, seek professional counsel if you find yourself in similar circumstances. See more here.