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Reclaiming My Inner Badass With a Brain Injury

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On April 10, 2018, two things happened; I started taking medication for my brain injury and I heard Drake’s “Nice for What” for the first time. The combination of these two completely unrelated events gave me my personality back after feeling like a shell of a brain-injured human being for quite some time.

Within my 10-plus years of having a brain injury, I experienced some of the worst physical symptoms I’ve ever had from November 2017 to April 2018. Between the symptoms, looking unwell, doctor’s appointments and desperately looking for answers and treatment, I felt like a “sick” person more than I ever had before. This period of my brain injury not only took a toll on my body physically, but it also greatly impacted my personality. As hard as I tried, I couldn’t bring myself to feel as happy as I used to be. I tried to continue to be my “sunshine” self, but every episode of symptoms impacted my mood.

When you don’t feel well and don’t feel like yourself, you may make decisions throughout your day that you usually wouldn’t make. I became quiet and complacent in my life; this included my dating, friendships and work life. I was allowing the men I was dating to treat me in ways that wouldn’t fly before, friends to disappear when I really needed them and my slow reactions impacted my work.

Cue meds and Drake.

I started taking a prescription drug that calms your body. In my case, it calmed my brain and nervous system that was going haywire daily with physical symptoms.

The song “Nice for What” by Drake focuses on female empowerment, being independent, working hard and not needing to be nice to any man just for the sake of being nice. The music video features diverse women doing what they love and being badass.

Within a week, I experienced a huge decrease in symptoms and a huge increase in “Nice for What” attitude. I took my meds every morning, put Drake on my iPod and strutted off to work with the same sass, attitude and personality I had before. My filter was gone in the best way; I dropped men who were no good for me, was honest with friends and was more direct in all aspects of my life. While some looked at me like meds and Drake had created a little monster, I felt like myself again, but better; everything in my life felt healthier including my body, mind, boundaries and relationships.

It’s been almost six months since this happened and I still take medication and listen to “Nice for What” almost daily. It serves as a reminder of the badass with the brain injury I am always striving to be.

Getty image by Chris Gorgio.

Originally published: September 24, 2018
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