10 Years Post Encephalitis: Finding Meaning

Today marks 10 years since my life was changed by what I would later learn was encephalitis. Looking back, I had no idea how it would impact me. Nor did I ever imagine good things that would come of it. Top 10 list about the impact of encephalitis A sense of belonging: my circle of […]

Home for the Holidays: Revisiting What Was Before Encephalitis

Nostalgia can be so heart warming. When I suck in a deep breath and close my eyes, I can clearly smell the abundance of foods prepared by grandparents and family during the holidays. I see the vintage bubble lights on their Christmas tree, the colors mesmerizing to a child. I hear dishes clanging in preparation […]

12 life-changing letters: encephalitis

Encephalitis. What a mouthful of a word. Ever heard of it? I hadn’t heard of this 12-letter word until 6 years ago. When the doctor said it, I kinda shrugged, thinking “thank God it wasn’t a stroke.” His expression changed as he explained that encephalitis is a form of brain injury, quite similar to a […]

What Is “Recovery” from Encephalitis?

When death stared me in the eyes 8 years ago this week, I never contemplated survival from encephalitis. I fast forwarded to milestones I assumed I’d miss … my son’s graduation, his career, his choice in who he’d marry. Being with my family during holidays. Traveling to new countries. Retiring. If I were to survive, […]

What Success Looks Like Post Encephalitis

Success? Hmmm. Are we measuring in miles or inches? In the interactions I’ve had with hundreds of survivors, success looks different from person to person even though survival looks similar. Regardless of how we acquired encephalitis … West Nile, auto-immune disorder, Herpes, Lyme’s, etc. the outcomes are similar. Memory loss, extreme fatigue, speech disorders and […]

When Words Don’t Come

“Still Alice” captures the dramatic nature of dementia in its recent release in theaters. Julianne Moore gracefully depicts the real-life trauma of forgetting and the unfortunate shame that accompanies that circumstance. If years lend us the opportunity to grow older, most of us will gradually meet this tragic and startling experience head on. As a […]