I live with a broken brain and PTSD--but that doesn't stop me! I'm an author, artist, and qualified mediator who loves life's detours.
I co-authored NOT CANCELLED: Canadian Kindness in the Face of COVID-19. I also publish horror stories.
My Broken Brain Has Its Own Schedule
Some days I find myself poring over my Google Calendar schedule. It defaults to the current month, and I’ll stare at it, trying to absorb what’s going to happen today, tomorrow, next week, and the week after that. My brain will attempt to anticipate and face without anxiety the events and tasks I have scheduled. And sometimes, my knocked noggin will freak out a little.
Can I Be Your Kid Tonight?
When you’re a kid, sleepovers with friends can be super fun. You get to eat junk food and watch movies with your besties, then you can whisper to each other long after it’s time for lights out. Sleepovers are childhood adventures, a sign that your parents (and your friend’s parents) think you’re old enough to have friends stay overnight. Most likely, there’s a verbal agreement between parents and special arrangements are made for delivery, duration, and pickup of the visiting child. Fun, right?
Today I Want to Blow My Head Off
You want to know what living with a brain injury is like? Today, for example, I simply want to blow my head off. Why? It’s not because I’m angry or I want to hurt myself. It’s because the ringing in my ears is so loud, so all-consuming, that it eclipses every other sound around me.
I Wasn't Always a Dirty Girl
Damn. I just licked my fingers. Oh god, and I didn’t wash my hands when I came home, because I was too busy hunkering down to finish the work I’d started before I left. Now I probably have COVID. Remember when we only worried about germs and not a deadly virus? Oh, and I touched so many things on my errands today! Damn! That one little flick of the tongue to the tip of my fingers, fingers trying to separate two pieces of blank paper so that I could write notes on one. And now, I’m already feeling queasy.
Road Trips with My Family, or I'm Going to Kill Us All...Again
There was nothing like a good old Sunday afternoon drive. Bellies full after our post-church meal at the Midway, weather crisp and fall-like or sultrily summerish, off we’d go. Most of the time, it would be the three of us—Dad driving, Mom in the passenger seat, and me, often lying prone in the backseat.
Bang Bang: The Haircut Saga
When I was around 14, my brother’s girlfriend convinced me to participate in a local beauty pageant. Looking back, I can’t imagine how that ever happened; I considered myself shy, clumsy, and homely inside and out. I was book-smart, but socially awkward and I really wasn’t interested in being the center of attention. I had nothing to offer. I thought beauty pageants were stupid. Was this peer pressure to the nth degree? Why, why did I do this?
Happy Birthday, Dad
Happy Birthday Dad, This week I’m filing your taxes and I took your coin collection to an auction house (one I trust, don’t worry!). Months after you died, I’m still learning about you and of course, your bookkeeper Joanne told me that you and her husband had been friends since high school. The stories I hear!
You Can't Win an Argument with a Monster
At 60, I’ve come to understand a lot about myself. Through therapy and determination, I’ve been able to fix some of my brokenness. And I’m a writer, so I'm able to articulate the impact of childhood events. I have a pretty solid comprehension of the horrors of mental illness, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia. Nonetheless, I can only imagine what it was like to be my mom, who didn’t have the access to the help we do today.
I Work as a Fashion Consultant
I work in a women’s clothing shop—a boutique, it’s called. It’s not a retail chain; rather, it’s a small, intimate main-street salon, with loyal, well-heeled clientele. We know our regulars by name, and many have become friends over the years.
Our COVID Side Hustle is "Ferda Berds"
January 2021: almost a year into COVID, and my husband and I were temporarily unemployed. We were together 24/7, which was fine because we enjoy each other’s company. But I knew my husband was getting antsy, and he wanted to take up woodworking. So I asked him to make me a birdhouse.