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Thread: It's been a year now...

  1. #1

    It's been a year now...

    When I think about that day that my life was altered forever, I seem to have mixed emotions.

    Negatively, I think about how that night was the last time I was able to walk into my own home only to leave on a stretcher with a bullet in my chest. Its sad when I think of what I lost that night. My indepence being foremost, but so many things I worked so hard for were gone just like that. I was 25, had a bachelors in criminal justice, owned my own home and had a job that I knew I could advance in within time in law enforcement. I had a pretty good life. It wasn't exactly easy but I worked hard for everything I had so everything meant that much more to me.

    Sadly, what I seem to struggle with the most was losing my beloved companion, my dog Duke. Thinking of him is usually what brings tears to my it seems to be doing now. He was there when I needed him, and he lost his life trying to protect mine. In some ways I feel like I let him down...I couldn't protect him the way he protected me. He was so much a part of me, I took him with me wherever I went if I could. Finding out that I lost my dog was far more worse than finding out I was "never going to walk again."

    I moved out on my own recently, it was probably the best thing I've done for myself since I was injured. It has been really difficult unpacking boxes of things that I have not seen since that fateful day. In fact, in kind of put me in a funk, as I like to call it. The books I've unpacked have been difficult. College textbooks and a book on running I had recently gotten before my injury were the most difficult. They are all reminders of what I hoped to do with my future. Just as difficult are the items I come across that are connected to my attacker. I have yet to uncover mother has agreed to go through my albums and get rid of the pics for me at the same time I kind of think thats the wimpy way to do things. I just know I'm not really ready to deal with that yet. My emotional rehabilitation has been far more difficult them my physical. But I also know if I give my attacker the credit of "ruining" my life, he wins. I'm not about to let that happen.

    Positively, I think about how far I have come since that day. I went from not being able to just sit up in bed to living in my own apartment, where I will continue to gain my independence. I remember someone telling me about board transfers...and I was like theres no way I'll be able to do that. It took me longer thanks to my TLSO and my short arms...but I finally did it and now its like second nature to me. I constantly amaze myself by trying something new and being afraid that I won't be able to do it...only to be surprised that I can. I really do need to have more faith in myself.

    While I was in the hospital just after my injury, I could not talk because of the tube down my throat. I was writing notes for a while, but then I got to the point where I would just give a thumbs up. After I moved to a regular room my brother brought me a gift. It was a painting he had done that was in one of the galleries in town. It was a self-portrait of a "thumbs up." I kept that in my room for the rest of my stay at the hospital and took it to rehab too...and its not like its inconspicuous or anything. To this day it really means a lot to me. It is a symbol of how far I have come and how far I hope to go.

    Through all of the trauma I've gone through one very important thing has happened. My family has become so much closer. I think we all realized just how much we took for granted.


  2. #2
    Senior Member cali's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    where everyone knows your name

    it's been a year and a half for me, and i definitely know what it's like to feel like you have the whole world ahead of you, only to have it come crashing down instead.

    i've lost a few dogs in my time and it's hard, it hurts a lot. but i never lost a dog the way you did. i'm so sorry for your loss.

    i had also went through my things and i had a really hard time doing it. i felt hurt, angry and sad. i just lost it and burst into tears through the whole thing.

    i was really happy to see that your brother gave you a picture while you were in the hospital. my brother did that for me too! my brother is a very talented artist. he gave me a pencil drawing of me in a flower shop selling this weird alien looking plant that reminded me of that plant from the little shop of horrors to a creepy igor guy.

    anyway, just know that we're here for you at cc and we're going through it too, even when it feels like no one could ever know what it's like to be you in this situation, in a lot of ways we do.

    if you ever need to talk, we're here, feel free to PM me if you ever need to talk.

    Never take life seriously, nobody gets out alive anyway

    Frank's blog:
    My regular blog:

  3. #3

    First off, congratulations on moving out and regaining that strength of independance. The bigget accomplishments are the ones you have doubt in, and I am glad that you haven't let doubt or fear hold you back. It's a great feeling to prove such a big point to yourself.

    Second, I think that the emotional part of SCI is offten the most difficult for many, myself included. There are a lot of things that can be hidden behind a smile, but sometimes it's good to just let yourself have a good and long cry. I always know that when I cry, I am going to be stuffed up, red-faced, and have that ache in my chest, but things will be better the next day. You are stronger than most by slowly dealing with it, not denying it.

    We should plan a Kansas girl get-together sometime.
    If there is light
    it will find

    --Charles Bukowski

  4. #4
    Senior Member queen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Garden on the Green, Indiana

    It's good you made the move to more will amaze yourself with each passing day and week with your progress!

    Work thru your pain, at your own speed, til you see that light at the end of the tunnel....and it will come in time. Until then, if you ever need a listening ear or a "mouse" to cry on or with, you just let us know. We will share your anguish and you won't be alone. We might even perk you up
    eventually with a little "joystick"!

    You take care and let us know how your doing?

    And Duke loved you, and he knew you loved him with all your heart...and he knows it wasn't your fault what happened to him. Dogs just have insight into things we humans will never understand and have no way of conveying it to us. Dukes most likely looking down at you wondering why you don't have a new puppy now and thinking maybe he just didn't get you trained enough to love another one, just like him.

    Your life is what you make it, and only you have that choice!

  5. #5
    I can empathize with you. Though its been 25 for me. For the first 10, I stood on my head.

  6. #6
    I appreciate this forum so much. While in my own community I feel very isolated, I can come here where people understand what I'm going through. Even though how we got here varies what we each go through is often very similar.

    I've always had a hard time reaching out for help, in the form of support, but I know if I come here there is always someone willing to listen.

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