Sunday, July 31, 2011

Turning Failure Into Survival

"The biggest failures come round and spring ultimate surprises of survival."  ~Jack White

Seeing as how I'm quite the fan of Mr. Jack White, I found it fitting to use this quote today.  I've been thinking about some things for awhile and trying to figure out how to write what I'm thinking, what I'm feeling.  I've had a hard past couple weeks and I finally had a meltdown on Friday.  I guess I was bottling up all my emotions and frustrations and anger for those two weeks and finally, the boiling water in the pot blew the lid off.  I can't quite put my finger on what was wrong and I'm still trying to figure it out.  The only things I could say when talking to a friend of mine on the phone is that I'm tired of my life and I'm tired of being trapped in this body.  This life of being a burn survivor and this disabled body that prevents me from doing things that I used to be able to do, whether those things are the basic things to take care of myself, my love for running and exercise, or the life of a performer.  But there's so much more to it than that.  Something much deeper.  Maybe it's fear.  Fear of my future, fear of what is in store for me, fear of being alone.  I don't like feeling lost.  I had a plan.  I traveled over 3,000 miles away from my home to the big scary New York City, literally on the complete other side of the nation to chase after my dream of being a performer.  My whole life, since I was in the second grade, has been all about dreaming of being the best actress the world has seen since the Hepburns, since Annette Benning and Meryl Streep.  An actress that possesses great talent, grace, charisma, intelligence and humor.  I didn't want to do shit work just for the paycheck.  I wanted to eventually be the kind of actress that is sought after like Meryl Streep or Julianne Moore and Annette Benning who can go years without being in a movie because they care more about the project, about the character they will be throwing themselves into and embracing.  They want to do films that are GOOD, that are AMAZING, and films that can make a difference with a powerful subject, powerful writing, powerful directing, powerful cinematography and powerful characters.  I know you have to start somewhere but those women were my idols for where I wanted to be, who I wanted to be as an actress.  

But then some things started to go wrong in my life during my last year in New York and I was asked to come home for a break to think about things and get my head on straight.  It was during that time when I came home that my accident happened that changed my life forever.  I am constantly consumed with thoughts of what-if's.  What if I hadn't come home?  What if I had stayed in New York and figured myself out there.  Would I still be there?  Where would I be in my life and my career at this point?  These consuming thoughts destroy me but I can't stop thinking about it.  I feel like a failure.  I feel like I failed myself, my family.  And I don't know how to fix it.  I'm scared beyond belief.  

Jack says that such failures will "spring ultimate surprises of survival."  But what kind of failures is he talking about?  Any kind of failure?  Because if my failures qualify with what he's talking about, when will I experience these ultimate surprises of survival?  I don't know what I'm looking for.  And this is where I feel lost.  Yeah, I survived being on fire for several minutes.  I survived the life flight to Portland where they had to manually airbag me the entire way to keep me breathing.  I survived the surgery when I arrived at the hospital.  I survived the coma, I survived the months that have followed since the accident and I have survived 29 surgeries.  But what about other kinds of survival?  Like surviving what is to follow in my future?  Will I be able to find a way to survive all that I have been through, all that I am currently going through, and all that is still ahead of me to go through and come out the other side with a bright future and endless possibilities?  And more importantly, come out the other side as a whole person able to love myself and believe in myself despite my past failures and what happened to me when I came home that month of March, 2008.  But I suppose as Jack puts it as "surprises of survival" that my survival of all this will spring on me in the form of a surprise, of unexpected success.  But I feel that this accident and everything that has come about because of it has changed me.  I used to be quite a dreamer but have I lost that attribute?  I have seen how horrible life can be and what can be taken from you in a split second.  I loved being a dreamer, of being an idealist.  Now I just feel lost in myself and jaded.

So how do I continue on everyday?  Day dreaming about having my life back one day, about getting back on the horse of my one true passion of performing is both a good and an evil.  It's not hard to see how it is good to think about those things, but it is also an evil in my days because I am afraid that I will not achieve the success in my ultimate passion and will one day be doing some other profession while thinking every day about the lost chance to be the next Meryl Streep.  And that will be the evolution of my own personal living hell.  

My biggest challenge right now is trying to figure out how my past failures can turn into the survival of living through what I have lost, the survival of my passions, preserving my dreams, the building of my character and the strength of my soul.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

An Unsuccessful Plan A

Well, so far, trying to detox off my pain medications has not gone well.

I went to see my doctor that handles my medications on Monday and who is also THE doctor to see about addiction and detoxing.  He has the highest credentials a doctor can get in regards to addiction and being able to prescribe certain medications for detoxing.  So I'm in good hands.  Anyway, I go to see the doc on Monday morning and we have a good talk about my reconstructive doctor's wishes for me to try and get off my pain medications so they can better control my pain after a surgery.  He then proceeded to talk about opiates and they're effect on the brain as well as explaining how some different medications work to help you go through the detox process.  After that discussion, we got down to business about our plan of action, which turned out to be two plans: a Plan A and a Plan B.

Plan A consisted of taking a medication that would take care of the withdrawal symptoms, particularly the withdrawal symptoms that I described I go through.  At the same time of taking this new medication to handle the withdrawal symptoms I would still be taking the morphine but I would slowly wean down from on it on a  monthly schedule for 6 months and on that 6th month, if this plan worked for me, I would officially be off all my pain meds for the first time in over 3 years.

Plan B was the Suboxone route, which is a pretty successful detox medication.  Suboxone is actually an opiate drug but as my doctor described it, it works both as an accelerant and a brake so it would help with pain but at the same time kill my withdrawal symptoms because with Suboxone, I would not wean off the morphine as I would with Plan A.  I would be completely off the morphine immediately and be taking the Suboxone in it's place.  Sounds pretty good, right?  Well, yeah it does but there's one hitch.  It's a small hitch, but at the same time an awful hitch because this is how you get on Suboxone: you stop taking your pain meds completely, cold turkey and (this is the awful hitch part) I have to wait and suffer through withdrawals before I can start the Suboxone to alleviate those withdrawals otherwise it doesn't work.  The amount of Suboxone I had to take to alleviate the withdrawals is what determines my daily dose.  And that's Plan B.

So, on Tuesday morning I began Plan A and by Wednesday morning, it was over.  The new medication I started wiped me out that day and when my mom came home, she had an idea to take my blood pressure and   it was low, quite low.  We continued to take my blood pressure throughout the night and it continued to drop to dangerous levels.  It went to an all time low that night when I went to bed.  So Wednesday morning I called the doctor and I was told to stop taking the medication, continue with the morphine for the rest of the week and scheduled another appointment to see him the following Monday, which is July 25th.  I'm not sure if we will begin Plan B, go another route, or not try anything until after this next surgery, which I still haven't heard from the doctor for when that will be.  But this new medication he put me on to detox really messed me up this whole week.  I am just now, the last day of the week, coming out of the haze it put me under.  I've been fatigued, tired, feeling like I am sick with something and on top of just feeling like absolute crap, I had three low blood sugar attacks three mornings in a row, which in themselves make you feel like crap so I was doubly feeling like crap all week. That's a lot of feeling like crap.  If he decides to continue with detoxing this next week with another plan of action, I fear it will be another week of feeling like more crap.

So that's what's currently going on with my detoxification.  It hasn't started very well but fortunately I have been very blessed to have my family, particularly my mom and also a few crazy awesome friends, dear friends, who all have helped me get through this first week.  I knew detoxing was going to be hard, I wasn't delusional about that but after this first week when I was on the medication for only a day and it made me feel so terrible for most of the week I think this is going to be even harder than I imagined.  And I imagined awful.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Don't Hog Your Journey

I'm sure you all know who Hoda Kotb is.  In case you've been on another planet for some years, she is a co-host on the fourth hour of The Today show with Kathie Lee.  You probably also know that she had breast cancer and beat it but only after having to go through a mastectomy and breast-reconstruction.  She also wrote a New York Times Bestseller book, a memoir rather about some of the worst things she has had to go through in her life thus far.  I've never read the book but she was speaking today about her book because it comes out in paperback and she talked about a piece in it that explained what led her to write this memoir and I found it really profound.  She said that she was on a plane once and a man who was sitting next to her struck up a conversation with her and long story short, at the end of the conversation he told her, "Don't hog your journey."  

What that man told her, to not hog her journey, made an incredible impact on me because there was quite a time after my accident that I didn't talk about what happened to me to anyone, except for those who already knew.  And those people who already knew didn't really broadcast it either, like on Facebook for example so I managed to keep it a secret for quite awhile to those who didn't know anything about it.  And for those who did probably thought I was recovering well and doing pretty good since I never talked about it on social media but instead made it out to be some kind of story that I was home in La Grande for a little break from New York City.  I was incredibly scared and embarrassed.  I didn't know what people would think if I told the truth to those who didn't know.  I was scared of the images I thought would go through their mind of what I would look like if burned by fire if I told them the truth.  I was scared that maybe they would go as far as to look up what burn survivors look like on the internet and then transfer those images to me.  I was also scared that if anyone wanted to see me how I would deal with it because I was so embarrassed about how I looked compared to what they knew of my physical looks before the accident.  I didn't know how to tell them I just can't see them not because I don't want to see them but because I just can't let them see me.  

Then finally, one day, I don't even remember when it was, I came out with it publicly through social media.  That was so hard and the days and weeks that followed from that day just got worse and worse as people came out of the wood works wanting to know what happened.  And after awhile, I didn't really want to talk about it to anyone anymore.  Then one day, I learned about Stephanie Clark Neilson, who is a burn survivor from a near fatal plan crash in Arizona and I learned about her blog and took a look at it.  This inspired me to start my own blog about what I was going through.  To be honest, I really had no idea what I was going to really do with my blog, what kind of blog I wanted it to be, what direction I wanted to take it, what I would write about and if anyone would even read it.  But I started one in 2009 and my first entry, "The Fire" was to explain in further detail about my accident.  

And then I learned how to post my recent blog posts on my Facebook page hoping to catch people's attention and get them to read it and I just kept writing and writing.  My blog basically became my journal that was not hidden underneath my bed or kept closed with a lock and key.  The entries in my blog, my "online journal" that I had made it, were many times very personal, expressing lots of different kinds of emotions and one of those emotions could have pissed a lot of people off and maybe it did, I just don't know about it.  But many times I talk about how angry I am at God and how my faith has been tested and I don't know what to believe anymore.  You have no idea how long I would read, re-read, and stare at those kinds of blog entries before I officially posted it wondering if I was going to piss someone off, like I said earlier, or if it would turn people off from reading it, or how people would see me after reading such personal and pretty strong feelings I harbored.  

But something magical happened.  People responded in the completely opposite way.  They praised me for not being afraid to express such strong feelings and gave incredibly supporting comments.  This reaction was a complete surprise to me.  And slowly more and more people began to sign up as "official followers" and more and more people began commenting on entries I posted and everything was positive!  I couldn't believe it!  See, Stephanie's blog is quite a bit different than mine in the way that she seems to always be so positive in every entry.  When she had her accident, she did, however, already have a husband and family so she wasn't experiencing the kind of loneliness that I do and she is also a very strong Mormon so her faith is just as equally strong.  She has never questioned God or cursed God the way that I have at times, not that I know of anyway.  And that's fine.  I'm not criticizing her in anyway.  In fact, I admire her strength and her positive attitude and how she has managed to never question her faith or God.  I think that's incredible.  But that's where my blog, my journey, differs from hers.  I don't have a husband or family of my own to make things a little easier to get through and before the accident I think I had pretty strong faith and belief in God.  But not having that family of my own and how my accident has caused me to question my faith now is what separates my blog and my journey from hers.  So, much of my blog is a lot of personal expression, much like a personal journal.  As time went on, I became more and more brave about bearing my soul to every reader. 

You're probably wondering by now what the hell I was talking about Hoda for and how what that man said ties in with all of this.  My point is, at the beginning of starting my blog and many times throughout it, I wasn't sure what I was writing for anymore.  Were people really interested in my journey?  But I continued to get more and more followers and more and more people were commenting and then people would personally tell me in email or private message on Facebook or post on my wall how they have been reading my blog and how it has inspired them.  Once I started hearing these things on a regular basis I started to feel more confident in my blog because now I knew what I was writing for:  to inspire people to be better people and live better lives because you never know what can be taken away from you or when it will all end.  And I was living proof.  And what that man said to Hoda, to not hog your journey, is so right on the money I think because if you hog your journey and not share it with others, not only may you personally suffer more by trying to get through it on your own but you rob your family, your friends and people in general of the chance to be inspired by you.  If, on the other hand, you DO share your journey in whatever form, not only do you personally have an outlet for your feelings and what you're going through but you have an incredible chance to inspire anyone and everyone around you.  And I think that's the most amazing part!  Many people, friends, family, strangers, have told me how inspiring I have been to them and how much they appreciate how real I have been in expressing what I'm going through or what feelings I'm having.  And these same people have also become an incredible support group for me. 

So now it has been 2 years since I started my blog not knowing if I should even do it, what I wanted or should write about, or even if anyone was going to read it and now I am even more determined to continue sharing my journey with everyone who comes here to read about it because I sincerely hope that they take away something from what they read that sticks with them, that inspires them.  Because if you are on a journey in your life that could change at least one person's life by sharing it with them, it's important that you do it for them.  Don't hog your journey.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


I was really nervous yesterday about going to my doctor appt after my last appt with him two weeks ago did not go so well.  I emailed him right after that last appt asking why he was doing this and explaining some of my points as to why I didn't want to do it.  He wrote right back saying that he was not stopping his work with me, that we still had a long way to go and that he just thought it would be healthier for me to take a break.  His last line was that I also did not have to get everything fixed before I start my life because my reconstruction will probably go on for most of my life.  Well, asking for everything to get fixed before I could "start my life" was not what I was asking.  So, after the last appt where it was all I could do to keep the tears from flowing and after the emails I was a little nervous to see him again.  I wasn't sure how he was going to act.  I was very pleasantly surprised.

He walked into the room with a warming smile on his face and immediately gave me a hug and showered me with praises on how great I looked, my clothes, my make-up.  It was nice.  I, in turn, jokingly complimented him on how great he was looking in his scrubs today.  He then took a look at my neck graft and he was pleasantly surprised at how well it has healed.  He was very happy with it.  Then he took a seat, got real close to me, placed his hands on my knee and kinda leaned on me and did his "inspection" work on me where he REALLY looks at where I've just had surgery, a graft done, a donor site, or looking to see what he wants to do next.  And he started looking at my face and I guess I had a piece of hair that was in my face and he ever so gently tucked it behind my ear.  And he did so in a lingering way, not quickly.  It was just so sweet.  Then, we started in on the conversation that he said in his email we would talk more about on my next visit.  And this time, it went much better.  I explained to him the insurance "things" that don't allow me to exactly "start" my life like he is asking me to do and he understood and explained to me that he's not asking me to get my career started because evidently that's just not really possible right now but what is it that I can do with my life while we take this break.  He said he is just trying to give me a break because my life for the past three years has been all about surgeries and then the recovery from the surgeries, not to mention doctor visits and hospital stays and most of the rest of my life is going to be some kind of reconstructive surgery.  He reassured me that he is absolutely not stopping his work with me.  Just wants me to do something with my life for a little while that doesn't have to do with doctor appts and surgeries/recovery.  OK.

Then he surprised me with  planning one last surgery before this "break."  He wants to do a z-plasty release on my eye and some z-plasty releases around my chin (and that's my chin, not my lip).  This one should just be a day surgery but the last time I was scheduled for a day surgery, it ended up as two nights in the hospital so we'll see about that.  So that made me happy.  He also made it sound like maybe this break wasn't going to be as long as 6 months.  I didn't ask because I didn't want to push it but it kinda sounded like we would get back at it sooner than the 6 months.  The rest of the appt was spent in our usual and unique doctor/patient banter that is special to our relationship.  He really took his time with me like he always used to.  Garrett and I have such a great time just talking about what he's done lately, what I've done lately, jokes and laughing together.  Half the time he doesn't feel like my doctor, which is really great, to me.  He is very professional when he needs to be and then plays around with me with fun banter and laughter together.  So now I'm waiting for a phone call from his MA to schedule this next surgery.

Then it was on to see Helen, my main OT (Occupation Therapist) at the Burn Center.  She was super happy to see me as always and also showered me with compliments on how great I was looking, how far I have come.  We talked about WBC for awhile and then we did the measurements, which I always dread because when we first started doing measurements they were so dismal and depressing and since then, with every surgery and every doctor appt we'd do more measurements and I am always scared to hear if I've lost ground.  But this time, I felt confident.  And I had reason to feel that way because my measurements on my neck were, for the first time since my accident, all NORMAL!  My head rotation on both sides were of a normal person's rotation and my neck extension, which has always been the worst for me because I was so badly burned on my neck and add on the bad healing genes I have, was an awesome 15.5 cm!!  A normal person's neck extension is 16cm so basically, I have the same neck extension as everyone else who don't have any kind of neck injury!!  Oh, I can't describe to you what it felt like to hear those numbers.  When I was at my worst contractures in my neck, my neck extension was a mere 6cm.  So basically, my chin was attached to my chest and I could barely turn my head from side to side.  I just can't believe I'm at where I'm at today with those measurements after such a long, hard struggle for three years.  However, my mouth measurements were something to be desired of.  I am 3cm short of a normal mouth opening, which is pretty bad.  But I knew those numbers were going to be bad.  And still, with my neck, even though my numbers are of a normal, healthy person's numbers, I still have to work hard every day with home therapy stretching exercises to keep it that way because I have bad genes that prevent me from healing properly so those numbers could change for the worse.  I am not home free, nor will I ever be.  This will be a life-long battle for me.  

(Most recent picture of me - 7/11/11)

Saturday, July 9, 2011

My Baby Jack White's 36th Birthday Today!

I must do a special blog post today for today is my idol's, my favorite musician's, the love of my life Jack White's birthday!!  Today Jack White, the youngest son of 7 boys and a sibling among 10 children in his family, turns 36.  If you do the math, this incredible musician that changed punk/garage rock, and my life, was born in 1975, July 9th.  He lives in Nashville but is originally from Detroit so I wonder if he spent his birthday this year in Nashville or his hometown.  Well, either way, I thought a lot about him today, not that I don't think about him pretty much everyday, but I was just thinking, how does a guy like Jack White spend his birthday?  Even though he is divorced now, was his ex-wife involved in the festivities?  I wonder if there was a little family celebration with his kids and then probably is going out later tonight for the crazy festivities with his friends.

Jack White came into my life around the end of 2000 when his White Stripes album, De Stijl came out.  I was instantly mesmerized and in love with his sound.  From then on, I couldn't get enough of him.  I slowly became more and more crazy about him, including finding out every possible fact there was to know about him, like his real name, his relationship with his White Stripes band mate, how tall he was, where he was from, his family, his personal idols and inspirations for his songwriting, etc.  And to this day, I know every move that man makes the minute he makes it and I grow more and more in love with him with each day, if that's possible.  And I'm not just in love with him because, well, he's crazy hot and cute and funny, but I think he's so incredibly talented and his sound is one of a kind.

During some incredibly tough times I had during college, Jack was always there for me and I know that sounds like I'm a little crazy but what I mean is, he was always there in the sense of his music.  And now, during the struggles that I'm going through now, his music is still there for me.  I could go on about Jack but I won't.  He is my guy.  I love ya Jack, and Happy Birthday.

For some fun with Jack, here are some recent fun clips from when Jack was on the immensely funny, Stephen Colbert  Report (just click on the link, even though it's not in blue text or underlined):

Jack White and Stephen Colbert - Catholic Throwdown

Jack White presents Stephen Colbert's Record

Thursday, July 7, 2011

A 6 Month Recovery Study? - A Therapy Session

"Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired and success achieved." ~Helen Keller

Helen Keller, wow, what an incredible and inspirational human being and what an inspirational life story. I think about her life and what she overcame and did in life despite her disability and it inspires me to remain strong and steadfast in my journey and go after everything I want. But even that kind of inspiration can be tough to hold onto everyday. There are days where I have a strong hold on it like my life depended on it and then there are days where the darkness captures and surrounds me in such a way that I am unable to stop it and that inspiration slips through my fingertips.

I recently had a disappointing doctor appointment and then explained that disappointment in a recent blog post, "6 Months Explained." Well, I had a really great therapy session today that didn't necessarily solve my 6 month devastation, but it gave me some things to think about, not to mention a book that came home with me. So, you're probably thinking, "get on with it!" so here's what we talked about:

I first talked about what happened in my last surgeries because this was the first time she's seen me since I left for Portland to have the surgeries. And then I talked about my doctor appointment and the 6 month break he is wanting to do and the reasons he gave for it. She agreed on what I had to say with what I can and can't do in those 6 months that he is wanting me to do because of some, complications, if you will. So she talked with me about the first reason, getting off all pain medication. She first brought up Dr. Rice, who is pretty much the top guy in the region for addiction and being able to prescribe special medication for addicts (whether they became addicts for the "feel good" of opiates or people like me, who had no choice because it came about through injury and pain) to help them wean and get off the opiate(s) without going through the hell of withdrawals. So we talked about seeing him (he already is my doctor for my medications) for possibly getting on this medication to help get me off all my pain meds easier. In the meantime, in her words, "You are sitting on a goldmine!" What she's talking about is I have the opportunity to look at getting of all my pain medication as a sort of Psychology study not only on my own opiate addiction and the process of getting off the pain meds but also going to the Opiate Addiction meetings and observing other people's addictions to opiates and how they are dealing with their addiction and trying to recover. She said if there's one thing in the field of Psychology/Psychiatry, in the world even, that's never going to change or go away, it's addiction. And I have the opportunity to capitalize on that in these 6 months. This could be a very interesting way to look at and go through my recovery of opiate addiction.

She also talked about if I'm still thinking about an acting career, why would I want to waitress or bar tend on the side while I was trying to make my career when I have this Psychology degree? Why not do something with Psychology alongside an acting career? In other words, instead of thinking of it as an "either/or" situation, do them together. And by do them together, she doesn't mean incorporate them, but do something with my psychology degree and work in that field (possibly in the area of addiction if I find it interesting if I do what she suggested above) alongside my attempt at an acting career instead of waitressing or bartending. Well, makes sense to me. But this suggestion is all in the case that I do take off and try again to have an acting/performing career.

So that gave me some good and interesting things to think about, particularly about how to handle getting off my pain medications. Six months is still a very long time for me to wait to continue on with the reconstruction work and it's still so very hard for me because it prolongs the time for when I can start my life and I mean really start my life by executing what game plan I come up with, take care of myself and live independently again. There are just so many complications that are a private matter that still make this break devastating. I am truly going through trials and sufferings far beyond what I share with you. But I can only hope that through the trial and suffering, my soul will be strengthened, my ambition inspired, and the success I search for achieved as so poetically said by the great, Helen Keller.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Six Months Explained

My recovery from my last two surgeries has gone pretty well. My pain has gone down quite a bit to where I am weaning off my short acting pain meds already. It's the long acting pain meds, my morphine, that I am having a hard time getting off of. Morphine is a viscous pain medication to get off of, in my experience. I've gone through a couple episodes of withdrawal when my dose was decreased only slightly and it was absolutely awful. I can't even describe to you what I went through with those withdrawal symptoms. But if in my next doctor appointment, my doctor still wants to take this 6 month break, then I've got major work to get off the morphine. That's one of the reasons for his wanting to take a 6 month break - to give me time to get off all pain medication. And the reason for that is because I've been on some kind of pain med cocktail for over 3 years now that when I am in the hospital after a surgery, it's nearly impossible to control my pain because I'm tolerant to it all. And they can't just up my dosage or give me more because there is the danger of my breathing slowing and ultimately stopping and putting me in cardiac arrest. So, if he is still insistent on this 6 months break, that is one of the goals I have got to meet and I'm not looking forward to it.

He also gave another reason for this 6 month break and that is for me to get my life in perspective and really start thinking about and taking action on what I want to do with my life. This is a reason that I understand because I don't quite think he understands. He says that I don't have to everything fixed and reconstructed before I begin my life but that's actually almost kind of the case. See, I'm bound by insurance requirements and I can't really start my life like moving into some kind of housing for disabled persons as a step in the direction of living on my own again. However, I still have to have a caretaker and I know for a fact, from the information given to me by my social worker, that a caretaker is unbelievably EXPENSIVE! It's crazy how expensive a caretaker is. So, also take into consideration other things like paying for rent and a caretaker as well as all those things needed to live, like groceries, hygiene products, transportation costs, etc, there is no way I can move out on my fixed disability income. So that's out. And if that's out, really the first step of starting my life again, how can I get onto the second and third steps and so on that are needed to take to starting a new life? Not to mention those damn insurance restrictions I mentioned earlier. So, really, I DO have to have most of my problems from the burn fixed and the reconstruction done before I can start anew. This part really frustrates me because I just don't think he quite gets all that.

All those reasons are why taking this 6 month break is crazy to me, not to mention agonizing to play this waiting game another 6 months, which means NEXT YEAR!!! This is why I do not want to take this 6 month break because I need to keep moving on and moving forward so that I can get more and more reconstruction done that is needed for me to start my life again, like he is wanting me to do.

So, I'm going to spend the next 6 months still living in my parent's home, still living in La Grande and spending my days like I am today, doing shit. And I fear this will spiral me back down into a deep, dark depression like I was in earlier this year. The only thing I can do in this 6 months is work on getting off all pain medication and getting back into shape I guess. Oh man, I'M SO FRUSTRATED!! How could my life have gotten so messed up in a split second?!

I couldn't agree more with Ralph Waldo Emerson when he said, "How much of human life is wasted in waiting." That is exactly how I feel, like I'm wasting my life with all this waiting and there really isn't anything I can do about it when so much of my life revolves around doctors' decisions and schedules.