Thinking about Dying

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I’ve had a couple bad days this past week.  In general, I thought I was progressing, but when the day heads south, it is hard keeping upbeat thoughts going.

Yesterday, I guess I had a setback.  I hope it was just a setback.  By 7 or 8 last night, I was close to heading back to the emergency room.  The only thing that stopped me was I have already done it once before and knew what the reaction would be.  So I just figured out a way to shut my eyes and rode it out, somewhat.

I did sleep a couple hours last night.  It wasn’t what I’m trying for, but I am happy the night is done.  I feel a tad better this morning, so maybe the sleep is the reason.

So, deep into the night, or early this morning, I started thinking about if what was going on is that just something went badly wrong and if I didn’t get to the hospital, maybe I was just going to pass out and die.  That was a first.  I wasn’t really scared, but was getting close.  I am normally a pretty optimistic type person, so this is really a bet off-track for me.

I’m not feeling sorry for myself.  All cyclists crash, it is part of the deal.  I’ve never thought of this is a reason to quit the sport, or any individual race.  And, I’ve hit my head a number of times too.  This one just happened to be a lot worse.

But, I haven’t thought much about dying in my life.  I’m not sure why because I’ve been hurt, fairly badly, lots of times over my life.  I fell out of a tree and ruptured my spleen when I was 6.  That was a close one.  I was hit by a taxi cab just a couple years later.  And it continued.

I hit a car in the British Milk race going well over 100km/hr.  I was out for a while after that. And broke a lot of bones.

But each of those times, it didn’t cross my mind that I might die.

Both of my parents have died.  They didn’t live healthy lives and I sort of have a hard time understanding how they lived as long as they did.  I have had many friends that have died too. From accidents and illness.    Of course, each time I was very sad.  But I didn’t really relate it to my dying.

Hey, I am over 50 years old.  By all tables, even if I get lucky, I’m close to 2/3’s the whole through my life.  Really, I am surprised that I’ve lived this long.  I don’t have too many regrets.

But this head injury is a different deal.  I’ve been hurt nearly as much as I do now, being broken up in other ways.  But this headache/dizzy spinning deal is pretty hard to ride out.  It is like I’ve drank enough that I’m going to be sick and puke, but I haven’t drank anything.  Being nauseated for hours a day isn’t something I’d wish on anyone.

I’ve read up a ton on what is going on with me.  I like to think, and I’ve been told by my doctors, is that I’m going to be fine, eventually.  But my eventually is way quicker than what is currently going on.

I didn’t do anything yesterday that I think should have made me feel so bad for close to 12 hours now, and counting.  At least something that I know about right now. Maybe I will eventually figure it out, I haven’t yet.

I have an ear doctor’s appointment this afternoon.  I have a lot of questions to ask him.  I’m hoping to feel a tad better before that or it is going to be a challenge.  Just sitting in a car has been pretty bad most of the time.  I don’t drive. That will be a big improvement.

Anyway, I need to finish this, I don’t feel good.  I’m not scared of dying.  I know I am going to die. I know that just over a month ago, I could have easily died.  But I learned that wouldn’t have been painful.  I would have just been out doing what I love, riding my bike and then, poof, I’m gone. Of course that would sadden a lot of different people, but humans do die.

This is a little different though.  I hope to get a lot better.  I always thought this recovery was going to be a little challenging, just because of how I feel.  But that I’d eventually be back up to speed.  I never anticipated these setbacks.

Maybe I didn’t get to an article that covered them or something.  I don’t like them.  Laying around for over 20 hours a day doesn’t suit me.  Laying around feeling awful is even worse.  I would like to think that days like yesterday are going to be less and less.  And that it doesn’t continue today.  But, obviously, I don’t know squat about this. I probably won’t until it is all over.

The super moon was a highlight of the night yesterday. If you didn't get a chance to see it, it you can still go out tonight and it will be impressive. It won't be this big again until 2034, so it will be a while.

The super moon was a highlight of the night yesterday. If you didn’t get a chance to see it, it you can still go out tonight and it will be impressive. It won’t be this big again until 2034, so it will be a while.

I've been trying to lay outside as much as possible. Tucker is always game. And usually at least one cat. It is nice.

I’ve been trying to lay outside as much as possible. Tucker is always game. And usually at least one cat. It is nice.

 

 

29 thoughts on “Thinking about Dying

  1. Mike

    Good morning Steve. I missed you yesterday. I spent the day in praise and worship and rest. It was beautiful yesterday and it is today. I was intending to go for a ride, had a big 1st meal of the day afternoon and ended up taking a nap, reading, and listening to a part of a sermon someone mentioned to me. There have been times when I thought taking a nap, resting, not going for a ride were a waste of a day. I’m learning otherwise. I do enjoy how I get learned in different ways as I sojourn on this way through here. Eagles spend 93% of their time resting, watching, listening, observing. The eagle flies above the other birds and can lift from river bed to the highest of elevation with just a few sweeps of their wings. Their talons have incredible strength capable of crushing force. I visited the National Eagle museum on the Missippi this past year and learned these things. Before that I spent sixteen days out and back west visiting National parks camping, hiking, and a little riding. Since then I went east and back, smokey mountain camping and hiking. We live in on a beautiful land. Everywhere I go I’ve learned to claim the land I walk on. I’ve learned to chase squatters away from my land, my temple, they are not welcome here. My daughter is on another land of China traveling at the moment. I viewed a video of one of the places she’s visiting. It looks beautiful there.

    The first time I listened to brother Branham preach he came across a little brash for my ears. He’s since endeared my heart with his simplistic message and method of teaching. I do enjoy his sharing of outdoor adventures and commune with nature. This message here (from March 11, 1962) I share could be read or heard and both. I thought of you and confirmed again as I read your sharing today, so here you go for your to read, listen or not. My belief is that the message will provide you peace and comfort and healing if you allow it into your heart.

    http://www.williambranham.com/the-greatest-battle-ever-fought-62-0311/

    I’m happy to hear you fear not and pray for your healing my friend.
    God Bless you!

     
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  2. adabikenut

    Be sure and check with your doctors about getting back on the trainer. Upping your blood pressure may have repercussions as your brain and surrounding tissues try to heal. And as hard as it is, complete immobility and rest for several days may be the key to cutting weeks of your recovery.

     
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  3. Glenn Sanders

    Steve,

    Episodic depression is part of the TBI package and a big part of why they are so hard on victims and their families. Your natural positiveness and energy will be a huge asset in this department, but it’s still harder than any one person should have to deal with. I’ll reach out to a couple of people I know that are familiar with both riders and TBI’s and see if they have any specific suggestions.

    Good luck and hang in there my friend. BTW, great to see that your excellent writing abilities are intact.

    Glenn

     
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    1. Tilford fan

      This is very true. The depression will also eventually fade, but it can be hard to deal with. There is also a bunch of anxiety that goes with TBI, worrying that you will ever be OK again or return to normal life. I’ve been there and it is no fun, but the brain does heal. Ride out the bad days, there will be more good days to come.

       
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      1. Tilford fan

        Also–have you considered meditation? It really helps one center and calms the mind and was very helpful in the midst of my TBI last year. I still do it. I would highly recommend it (it can also help with dizziness and fatigue).

         
  4. JCS

    Steve, Hang in. Thanks for sharing your thoughts / feelings. As you said the other day, you can’t believe how many people have sent emails and gifts. We all care about. Peace.

     
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  5. Mark

    I know your situation sucks at best. At least you have doctors telling you that they expect you to make a full recovery. There are countless people out there going through trials and tribulations that they will never recover from. Keep your head up buddy!

     
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  6. channel_zero

    But my eventually is way quicker than what is currently going on.

    It’s called denial, Steve. You are still among the living, so deal with it. It’s not something unique to you and it doesn’t make you weak or “mentally ill.”

     
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  7. The Cyclist

    My head’s spinning just from reading this. I can feel all my head crashes hitting me. Anxiety is a bitch. Early morning panic attacks even worse. Last time I hit my head I thought I’d never get up again. Never had these kind of thoughts when crashing in my 20s…

     
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  8. Joe

    It would be nice if progress was linear, but it’s unfortunately it’s a bunch of peaks and valleys. I know that you know this, but that doesn’t make it any easier to take. Hang tough man!

     
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  9. Jmal

    Steve, I assume your physicians have prescribed an anti-nausea medication, but in case they haven’t, it is definitely worth pursuing. I had a severe case of nausea once that sent me to the ER, and until one has experienced this directly, it’s hard to imagine how uncomfortable it is. Worse than any pain I have experienced. Nausea strong enough to trigger deep fears of dying. I wouldn’t wish it upon anyone, and I hope your symptoms resolve soon.

     
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  10. Mary Pelletier

    If you are nauseated all the time and can’t sleep, ask your doctor if they could prescribe some Compazine or other anti-nausea medicine. It may help you sleep as well. The depression will most likely pass.
    If you for any reason, just feel like you are very ill or feel like you are perhaps dying, either go to the ER or at least call your MD. It is better to waste a trip than to wait too long and have a dire emergency.
    We are all praying for your recovery. Try to take each day as it comes and just deal with that day only.

     
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  11. Tyler Munroe

    I have been following this Steve and it hit close to home. I had M Shumacher style skiing accident 15 years back and went through exactly what you are blind thru. Vertigo was the worst and my wife said there was no one home in my emotion department for 2 months. This will pass and you will be fine. The good thing for you is I never heard you mention loss of smell which is great because in my accident I severed my Ofactuary nerve
    And now have no smell and little taste that will never return. So think of that and try to be happy. Good luck!

     
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  12. David

    We all can somehow live our lives in denial of our own mortality. What a strange phenomena. I find it fascinating. So far the death rate is 100%.

    We also avoid thinking of intelligent design, creation or eternity. I believe as we age these questions all seem to come stronger and more often.

    The inevitable future.

    Have a nice day.

     
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    1. Mark

      Today is the only guarantee you get.Accept Jesus Christ today as Lord and Savior. Tomorrow may be too late. Eternity is at stake.

       
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  13. barb

    As I read your post, I just want to give you a (light) hug and tell you it’s all going to be ok. Just try to be patient, and really accept the idea that the more you try to do, the longer it may take to heal. Please try to take it easy, even as hard as we all know that is for you. Like you said, “this is different”, so you need to adjust your expectations that the recovery is going to be different than anything you’ve gone through in the past. We are all pulling for you, you’ll get past this.

     
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  14. barb

    Steve, I just read this article about TBI and sleep disorders.
    When I had my shoulder/neck injury last year due to a mountain bike crash, could not sleep due to pain. Rather than giving me pain meds, they gave me Tramadol, which is an SSRI which promotes sleep. Also, it said if you have neck muscle pulls or strain, that could also interfere with your sleep, and recommend massage or acupuncture. Anyway, here’s an excerpt from the article about prescribing anti-depressants for TBI-caused insomnia:
    “Although some medications are specifically designed to promote sleep (i.e. “Sleepers”), they are typically avoided by physicians who treat head injury. Many physicians use small doses of anti-depressant medications (e.g., Elavil or Desyrel) with their head-injured patients and have found it to be very effective. Typically, you take this medication a half hour before bedtime and you will sleep straight through the night. Sometimes this medication works too well and people sleep for 12 to 15 hours for the first 2 or 3 days. This is normal; your brain is trying to “catch up” on the sleep that it’s missed. However, some people report side effects. They may report that it’s hard to wake up in the mornings. But once you get going in the morning, you will feel a lot better. You need to talk to your doctor about any side effects. Some of them are temporary and go away with time. After about a month or two of working great, the medication may seem to stop doing its job, and may need readjustment. See your doctor–most patients with head injuries can get effective relief from this problem.”

     
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  15. Mike crum

    Hope you get better , u r in my daily prayers, but u gotta start doing the right things ….. From day one, you had a few hundred posts from friends and they all said no phone, no tv , no texting, and of course u were on ur phone, computer and watched tv.. Then u went to a park to watch guys in some sort of race chugging beers. U ignored ur friends posts saying not to do all the bad things and you went ahead and did them . Maybe if u would have listened to ur dr and friends u be well ahead of schedule in the healing dept. push-ups, trainer for 20 minutes. Wtf!! If I were u, I would chech my ego at the door and listen to the dr and stop doing all the shit your not supose to be doing . Trudi should have taken ur computer phone tv and car keys away and threatened u saying u use any , she’s leaving ur ass.. U need a wake up call brother. Get well , and stop all the crazy shut u do. Stay off the computer phone tv push-ups and bike..

     
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  16. Eric Miller

    I think about dying everyday. I think it’s only normal once you reach a certain age and end up with a debilitating injury or a chronic illness. Just never dwell on the thought of dying, it will consume you. You have so much more life to live.

    Good luck

     
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