Having explored more than 60 countries between work stints in international education, an accident while working as a Health, Sport Science and Physical Education teacher forced stillness and exploration turned internal. More than 2 years, 7 hospitals in 3 countries, the script could not be imagined by the most iconic author.
September 3, 2014 was cool and wet in Bavaria. Running, chasing, laughing, the teenagers were warm and eager with anticipation. Using baseball bats was like a trophy following a series of introductory lessons. The day started like any other. Minutes into the first Physical Education lesson of the day, my entire life changed in an instant.
A baseball bat and hardball connected by the skill of a powerful athlete launched my life onto a trail that had no map. I remember the impact and wanting to sleep. Trying to be strong, mask the pain and ensure my students were safe, I knew they needed to run for help fast.
The local hospital sent me home after mere minutes with a Black Eye, swollen shut from the moment my head stopped the linedrive. Who was I to doubt a medical professional? Stunned in every sense of the word, I was not well yet knew there was more than colour and closure.
I reflect today with a Black Eye that never again opened, working at embracing impermanence and celebrating what I have gained from the lessons of my traumatic brain injury (TBI).
I walked out of hospital 70% blind, with no direction. The only sign I could see pointed to mountains.