Wednesday, December 5, 2012

3-Year Collision Anniversary

My Echo Hatchback

Today it's been 3-years since the morning of the crash.

Crazy, right?!

It is a little unbelievable that I'm the same person.
I mean . . . I am...but I'm not, at the same time. If that makes sense . . .

I am the same girl that loves to paint and belly dance, spend time with dogs and cats (any nonhumans, really). Loves playing board games, and reading. Love laughing with friends and family. I still love music. Especially Ani Difranco's work.
There was a long time (like a year) that I couldn't recall the words to any of the music I adored. I distinctly remember, standing in my old kitchen, cleaning strawberries to juice, listening to Ani Difranco. Without consciously thinking, I began to sing along, and teared up because I remembered the words.

It was a beautiful moment.

I am pretty different.
I run. Which I never did before.
I no longer drink alcohol or smoke pot.
Previously I avoided any amount of confrontation. At any cost.
I did stop being a vegetarian, for crying in the sink! And not because I craved an animal's flesh, no, no, because I didn't want to fight and explain my reasons for being a vegetarian. That's what it came down to.
Now, I no longer recoil at the thought of having an open dialogue about being vegan or eating animals and their secretions. In fact, I welcome, and often encourage it, by bringing it up whenever possible. Always with a big, welcoming smile.
I still get very tired in groups with 5 or more people. I surmise it's because, in those situations, more than one conversation usually happens at once. The numerous conversations happening at the same time is exhausting. I try, with everything I have, to block out one while listening to another. It's really fucking tricky.
This is probably the same reason I still can't seem to follow a recipe with success while music is playing. But! I have had much success listening to folk music and driving to familiar places (like to my parents)!
So that's amazing!!
Violent movies and films are also a no go with me. After the coma, I became very sensitive to violent imagery, which  probably helped encourage me to become vegan.
I don't seem to have a very reliable filter either. That's my frontal lobes' doing. If I'm thinking about something, my next thought could be, "no, I won't bring that up right now", and as I'm thinking that, the previous thought will be coming out of my mouth. It's rather incredible that I haven't seriously messed up while on the phone at Great-West Life. Even there, the same thing occurs, I'm just lucky I haven't said  something terrible.
I like cooking and baking now. It's hard to say if that was a result of the brain injury, or becoming vegan. I relearned to follow recipes as part of my cognitive therapy while I was at Wascana Rehab. I love that I'm not having to handle some animals' cut up body parts or their stolen reproductive secretions. Bit of both, perhaps?

All that said, I really do prefer the person I've become. Life is all about evolving.

Like Ani Difranco sings,
"If you aren't getting happier as you get older, then you're fucking up."

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Erin Red Read My Letter on Red Radio!!

Yes, I haven't blogged specifically about this great, informative, and entertaining podcast as of yet. But I will! Seriously.
Okay, I'll do right now. Geez Louise Vegan Cheese.

I was listening to Citizen Radio
Erin Red was on the show as a guest and talking about veganism. I was enthralled by what she had to say. Enthralled.
Then I heard the announcement that she would be starting her own podcast. I was very excited.
I've been listening devoutly since her first episode, a little more than a year ago. Her first guest was my absolute favourite vegan, Colleen Patrick-Goudreau.
She releases a new episode every Monday(save for when she's supporting her boyfriends pro fights, at Festivals, or doing something else amazing).
The podcast is broken into several different topics, all related to veganism. She has interviews with Fresh Veggies(people that have been vegan for less than a year), and interviews with Seasoned Veggies(vegans for several years). There's a section that she rants about whatever is making her mad, Steamed Veggies. She reviews products and events, gives some vegan news, and she has a new segment called Dirty Birds, with Melisser Elliot(she wrote The Vegan Girl's Guide To Life).
During Dirty Birds, the two gab about sex and being vegan. She ends each episode with a Compassionate Clip of the Week.
Erin Red is from Toronto, Ontario, Canada. She's living in Brooklyn, New York, USA. She's pretty amazing. She does Muay Thai, bikram yoga, has tattoos, runs, works a lot, hosts a weekly podcast, has rescued cats and a dog, and is generally a stellar person.

Onto why I'm posting!
I listened to the one-year anniversary episode(EP49) on my walk to work on November 27, 2012. (The day after my birthday!!)
I just left my house, was walking down the back alley to the street, Erin was talking about the email I sent to her. She said my name!!!
My heart started racing, I got a huge grin on my face, and all I wanted to do was shout with glee and do cart wheels. And I would have, if it wasn't 7:20am, I wasn't bundled up and trudging through the snow.
I felt(and feel) so honoured to have been the sponsor for the anniversary show of this special podcast. Especially because she interviewed Colleen Patrick-Goudreau again! I loved it.
My roommate, Abi, listened to the intro with me later that night because I was so excited! She got a little teary-eyed. Abi said she knew my story, but it was like hearing it for the first time again because I always just sound so happy when I tell it.
The truth is I am happy when I tell it. It seems unbelievable that I'm the same person that went through that trauma. I'm happy I lived and can help others(human or non) when they need it.