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Traumatic Brain Injury

Pride and vainglory

Pride is a difficult thing I have had to deal with from my brain injury. I was either boastful or inadequate, in pride’s denial or utterly depressed, grandiose expectations or closing down feelings so I could function. These two extremes always tuned my nervous system into a high pitch, I became extremely high-strung, and because I could not repress my unconscious impulses my body became soaking wet from the sweats. My cells are now shot. I feel a certain quarrelsome about my being an ugly-duckling and I identify with nothing being true or valuable in which I can believe in. My pride feels gripped into a downward spiral. I am in what AA calls “hitting bottom” and maybe I do not feel violently tormented into a suicide act, yet my pride feels life owes me something.

Pride is the center of my life and when it is not fulfilled it creates this exploding rage. My pride becomes explosive because I feel crushed not only in whatever was at stake, but a sense of self. This state of consciousness is dangerous for me because it creates this violence. This violent rage is a power that wants to persuade me that human limitations do not apply to me. My pride and rage wants to ward off this hitting bottom and its own death. My impulse of rage is defined as saving my own life and saving my pride. My pride wants me to be self-sufficient. Now my pride is corrupt, again driving me into a bottomless pit, and for some reason this time it is not turning near so destructive.

When my pride use to feel this bottomless pit it created this inhuman monster who was in torment. This pit was always delusional thinking. Something is different now, because there appears to be a ray of hope. Naturally this encounter with this ray of hope is a wakeup call into something deeper and this time is clearly not the product of my pride. This light is giving a perception of confidence. I feel in this pit something new, as the chaos and unconscious impulses are quieter.

I feel my pride was my mask around my brain injury and now pain is crying out through this distorted mask. I also feel there is no need to conceal myself behind a mask. For some reason this bottomless pit is just a place to begin, without a prideful and a raging act. The rhythm and real freedom are difficult to identify and resolve. It just feels like without attempting to be, I feel humble in this pit of hell.

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