Almost two years ago I was a junior in high school + healthy as a horse. I played soccer all of my life + never had any medical problems, not even allergies. In May of my junior year, I had a very painful headache. I did not think much of it at first, assuming it was stress, but as the week went on, my headache got worse. I ended up throwing up at a gas station pump + it hit me that something was wrong with my body. I insisted on going to the emergency room even though I had no history of illness — the doctors assumed it was a migraine but did a CAT scan just in case. I had a blood clot in a vein leaving my brain that had cut off blood flow + was bleeding internally.I was rushed by ambulance to the Children’s Hospital in Chicago where I spent over a week in the intensive care unit until the bleeding stopped + they could put me on blood thinners. Over the next few months, I would have to abstain from any kind of activity that could result in injury + had to learn to manage my pain. It was pretty hard on me. I went from running a seven minute mile to relearning how to walk on my own.
I still have this blood clot in my brain + to this day, the doctors do not know what caused it. It is currently stable, but I am fully aware that any day it could start to build up again, causing a stroke, or that another clot can form + have the same result. I was very lucky I caught it the first time because if I had waited much longer, there’s a good chance that I wouldn’t be alive today.
I have diagnosed anxiety disorder, so adjusting to life post-clot was a challenge. Going into college, I knew I wanted to get back into working out but it was hard to go good endurance to suddenly not being able to run a mile. When I heard about CHAARG, I thought that it was an amazing idea. I am huge on female empowerment + promoting positivity. I joined immediately + began putting my all into studio spotlights, small groups, + working out on my own. Since joining, I’ve lost 20 pounds + regained a lot of confidence. I don’t think I’ve ever felt stronger, more motivated, or happier in my entire life, ++ I owe a great deal of it to CHAARG!
If there’s one thing I’ve learned from this second chance at life, it’s to try + live out your life with kindness + strength. There are too many horrible things in this world + we need to work on spreading love // positivity, but also remember we are powerful, confident, + amazing human beings.
“In all things of nature there is something of the marvelous.” // Aristotle
#CHAARGJourney highlights our members’ amazing journeys through CHAARG — physically, mentally, emotionally. Continue to follow Brianna’s CHAARG Journey on Instagram. We love you, Brianna, ++ are so thankful to have you a part of the CHAARG Community.