Brick Wall

I have been forcing myself to devote time to preparation of a summary document. The intent of this document is to tie together all of the other exhibits that have already been submitted, provide some form of logical coherence to my case.

This sounds a reasonable idea, but it has not worked. I have hit a brick wall.

This morning I have forced myself to attend to this work. I am conducting a review of the Accident Log entries from January up to the present, looking for a series of entries I made when I first attempted to make a start on the summary document.

What I discovered instead was a series of notations describing frustration and headache:

Have a splitting headache. Pushed it too far. But I had to get it done tonight as I have an 1100 mtg with Dr H tomorrow which means an 0900 departure.

Place is a mess with papers everywhere. Need to sort that out tomorrow. Need to eat now then get to bed.

I am very hopeful that this is the last submission I need to make.

The above entry was made at the end of February. Since then I have come to a dead end, a psychological brick wall. I cannot seem to get anything done. I wake, have a coffee, retreat back to bed. Before the end of February, I was able to push it, get things done, force my way forward. Since the beginning of March I appear to have collapsed into apathy. My sense is that the primary cause has to do with the recognition that the injury effects are permanent. In fighting to understand the injury, I have arrived at a recognition of the mechanism of injury. This understanding eliminates wishful thinking about rehabilitation. I no longer have any illusions over the power of the TAQ process to result in positive change. In a strange psychological twist, I appear to be operating from the belief that it would be easier to alter the policies of the Government of Canada than it will be to repair the effects of the injury.

There is a second brick wall after the first. This one is associated with the review document itself. In the initial stages of the injury all three of my Ontario doctors independently advised me that I had been badly mistreated by the health care system in Québec. I heard what they were saying. I understood the words. But the words had no great effect on me. Now, when I try and compile the summary document, I see for myself what they were speaking of four years ago. I recoil from this awareness. I retreat back to bed to evade knowledge of an inhuman and uncaring response.


Brick Wall Update 26/03/16 15:02:54

After creating the above post, I forced myself back into the salt mines. And there I found this interesting research nugget which may have some explanatory power:

Insight appears to be related to depressed mood with studies of TBI indicating that greater insight over time post-injury may be associated with greater depression. We consider that this relationship may be due to depression appearing as people gain more awareness of their disability, but also suggest that changes in mood may result in altered awareness.

The above is from Neuropsychol Rehabil. 2003 Jan-Mar;13(1-2):65-87. doi: 10.1080/09602010244000354. The neuropsychiatry of depression after brain injury.
Fleminger S1, Oliver DL, Williams WH, Evans J. The research paper may be accessed at this link.

My experience appears to directly fit with the first proposition: increasing awareness of disability results in greater depression. I no longer have the belief in my own agency in respect of positive change.

The second proposition: changes in mood resulting in altered awarenes, does not fit with my experience. I have had a great many alterations of mood over the past five years. But it was not until I gained insight into the cause of the injury that I came to experience this degree of apathy.