One of the things I have noticed over the last few years, post Brain Injury, is both bizarre and fun – thankfully! On occasion there seems to be an increase in serotonin release in my brain for no apparent reason. Somewhere in there, the receptors for the “Need-To-Be-Happy” have been damaged, and they OD me with the chemicals for love and other euphoria without any warning and without any links to external stimuli.
This lets me down occasionally when I need it – and I have to choose to like situations and circumstances when it refuses to work at all…but them’s the breaks. Here's an explanation about all the things serotonin does in the body.
I had nearly a whole week of over production of serotonin in the brain a month or so ago. Flying….phew! Still not a good reason to Acquire a Brain Injury. It’s helpful for motivation, but not necessarily helpful for productivity. It’s totally interesting living on the inside of this brain with all its new way of operating. Frustrating, bizarre, over the top, unnecessary, useful, useless, unhelpful, ridiculous, stupid and fun.
One thing I am super grateful for though is that unlike so many people who have suffered ABI (Acquired Brain Injury), I have not had to deal with the often associated long-ongoing depression. Somewhat perversely, long term, I have the opposite. I don’t know if that is because in the very beginning, in the middle of all the confusion, intense pain and uncertainty I determined that no matter what, I would spend every possible moment in worship; or because somehow the ‘right’ things took a hit.
A combination of the Pollyanna symptoms and the deliberate Practice of the Presence of God has made it a lot easier to absorb and release what would normally be for me the most distressing day to day occurrences. Memory loss, skill loss, language loss. It still erases time, conversations and people – short term and long term. Autistic overload, migraines, different kinds of confusion, tiredness and a raft of others.
Paul wrote to the Philippians:
‘Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me – put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.’ Philippians 4:4-9 (NIV)
Renewing our minds is not possible without entering into cooperation with Jesus in the first place. It’s Gods’ peace that guards our heart and our mind, Jesus’ peace – He gave it to us,
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” John 14:27 (NIV)
The Holy Spirit is here in power and will give us everything we need.
“the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you” John 14:26 (NIV)
When we think about all the things that it looks like it’s necessary to do in order to become that renewed, reformed and re-created person, it can be an overwhelming and exhausting picture.
I have learned one very big lesson. Nope.
It is physically and technically impossible for me to go back and become the person I used to be. To be able to do All The Things. To Manage All The Things. Some days it is even ridiculous to think about doing ANY of the Things…!
All I’m going to do, is listen to Jesus, talk to Jesus. Listen to Father, Talk to Father, Listen to Holy Spirit, Talk to Holy Spirit, Praise and Worship. Read the Word and catch up with the people I know are Gods’ people. Treat everyone I meet as if they are special, as much as I can. Really, bringing The Kingdom is not much more than that. Sitting at Jesus’ feet and putting what you learn into practice.
I sometimes get hooked up in over promising and under delivering – the remnants of habit are still there, what I used to be able to accomplish still has a pathway somewhere. However I like this new person, I like who I am because I like who God is in me now far better than the need to mourn anything I have lost. Also, probably it’s a waste of time - which at this point in time is also being significantly influenced by an injection of serotonin and a serious feeling of skipping through the daisies, happy, happy, joy, joys, who can be bothered, chocolate and endorphins!
I’d better go before I break something.
God Bless You Very Much!