Blog

In this blog I’ll share lessons from my personal concussion care journey.  I’ll share stories about how mindfulness has been the balm to soothe my injured brain. I’ll show you how I have modified mindfulness practices to reduce overwhelm.

It Takes Guts to Date with a Brain Injury

It Takes Guts to Date with a Brain Injury

I wrote these words a while ago. I hope they may help you meet the challenges of dating with a brain injury with some mindful self-compassion.  Nearly three years after my ex ended our long marriage, I began online dating. If the connection progresses, there’s the...

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Sink In!

Sink In!

Learning to be mindful is nothing like learning to ride a bike. We don’t learn it and are done. We learn core concepts over and over again. We practice the skills we learn over and over again.   I have many ‘mindful journals’ where I jot down my teachers’ wise words...

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Tend or Befriend Pain

Tend or Befriend Pain

I don’t know about you, but after my car accident I tended to hyper-focus on physical pain in unhelpful ways. I’ve learned over time that it’s important to distinguish between pain that needs my attention i.e. I must attend to, and pain that I must befriend i.e. pain...

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Ode to My Teacher

Ode to My Teacher

  Written January, 2022 People around the world feel the passing of our beloved teacher Thich Nhat Hanh. He taught me so much but perhaps most of all I am grateful that he taught me to love everyone. I have been an activist all my life and so often this has meant...

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You are Always in Choice

You are Always in Choice

From the get-go I modified mindfulness practice to meet my needs. I didn’t have the language for it at the time, but now I see that I was/am focused on nervous system regulation. Simply put, this is a fancy way of saying ‘calming myself down’ if I am anxious or...

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Sweet Forgiveness

Sweet Forgiveness

Photo of a heart-shaped leaf for you as St. Valentine's approaches.... In just a few days it will be my birthday. It’s always a time for reflection, isn’t it? Here is a poem I wrote on my birthday in 2016. This was a time when I was feeling the pain of having had to...

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Two Talks to Tantalize

Two Talks to Tantalize

In recent months I have had the privilege of being interviewed for two podcasts: One: Mark Watson of ABI Wellness and a leader in brain injury care in British Columbia interviewed me for the Brain Mastery Podcast. Mark asked me many wise questions that helped tease...

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Work with an Occupational Therapist

Work with an Occupational Therapist

I feel fortunate that very early on in my journey I had the opportunity to work with an occupational therapist. I encourage you to do the same! It's through the support of the amazing occupational therapists at the GF Strong Rehab Center that I first learned many of...

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Come to Grips with the New You

Come to Grips with the New You

About 2.5 years after my car accident I went to see a neurologist. He said: “Jessie, the woman who was just  in my office has had a brain injury for four years. She is practically killing herself trying to live her old life, but she can’t. Don’t wait any longer - set...

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Just Breathe

Just Breathe

Not long after my car accident I discovered this amazing video on Brainstreams, the website for the British Columbia Brain Injury Association. In it, fellow survivor and Canadian actor Lesley Ewen guides us in the practice of taking long, slow, deep breaths.  I so...

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Cultivate Mindful Self-compassion (it’s the Secret Sauce that supports us)  *Photo: Spirit Island in Jasper National Park  I had a rocky introduction to the concept of self-compassion. I first learned of it through metta (loving kindness) practice. Often on retreat...

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Slow Yoga to Release the Issues in our Tissues

Slow Yoga to Release the Issues in our Tissues

You may already have a ‘fast’ yoga practice, and that’s great if it doesn’t intensify your symptoms, but in this blog post I’d like to introduce you to the healing power of ‘slow’ yin and restorative yoga.  FYI: I write each new blog with the idea that you have read...

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Seek Trauma Support

Seek Trauma Support

While not all brain injury survivors are also trauma survivors, many of us are. The truth is, it is often difficult to tease out the difference between trauma and brain injury symptoms, because often-times they overlap. The good news is that there is also a lot of...

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Welcome to my Mindful Concussion Blog!

Welcome to my Mindful Concussion Blog!

Maybe you are reading this because you have a concussion. Or perhaps a loved one or a client has a concussion. Or maybe you are here because you have a different chronic condition that would benefit from mindfulness. I welcome all of you here, but I am writing this...

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What is Mindfulness?

What is Mindfulness?

I want to start by describing what (I think!) mindfulness is all about. It’s a complex concept, so please don’t worry about getting it all right away. That will come bit by bit over time. Simply put, when we practice mindfulness we pay attention to what is happening...

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Mindfulness: A healing balm for the injured brain

Mindfulness: A healing balm for the injured brain

Truth be told, at first I was a little skeptical about mindfulness and concussion. I wasn’t against the idea (I was familiar with it as my father has meditated since I was a kid); I just figured some kind of treatment would help me more.  I am so grateful for public...

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Why Modify Mindfulness Practices

Why Modify Mindfulness Practices

I didn’t set out to make modifications to mindfulness practices. Ever the keen student, I was intent on taking it all in as best I could. As I explain in this video, it was my propensity to go into overwhelm that made it impossible at times, especially in the early...

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How to Modify Mindfulness for Brain Injury

How to Modify Mindfulness for Brain Injury

In this blog and other Mindful Concussion resources I tease out the trauma-sensitive and concussion-sensitive modifications I have figured out on my own, as well as modifications I have learned from others. For now, let me briefly introduce the basic elements of the...

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