Today my wife and I had lunch at a popular restaurant. I asked the waiter where the restrooms were located.
It seems pretty simple.
I had an Instant flashback about when I could not go to the bathroom alone.
When I got out of the hospital it was on my son’s 7th birthday. We went to a restaurant and my son took me to the restroom. I was scared. I had no concept signs or gender. My son guided me to the “men’s room.”
Because of my aphasia, I did not even comprehend the alphabet, men’s, women’s, etc.
Several months later, I went to a local restaurant. I was so confused and I went into the wrong restroom. I was so embarrassed and I didn’t tell my wife for several months.
Three times, I peed in the sink rather than in the urinal. I only noticed when I realize that I was washing my hands where I just peed.
Those early days after my strokes were humbling in general. Losing your sense of self is tough. Agonized about the embarrassment of not knowing how to go to the bathroom.
It’s been almost 6 years and I’ve come along way. And I’m still embarrassed.