“You could have 6 weeks to live… this mass is growing at a dangerously rapid rate.” These were the haunting words of my neurologist 48 hours after giving birth to my first child.
My daughter was only 6 hours old when I found myself paralysed from the jaw down. At first, I thought it was an adverse reaction to the anesthetic drugs, or the effects of post-pregnancy hormones doing crazy things. The flashing lights and alarms proved otherwise. I literally couldn’t speak and my body was limp. I vaguely remember the doctor squeezing my hand; a terrifying reminder that I could not feel it.
“Her blood pressure is 280/220,” the physician yelled as if I wasn’t even in the room.
“Take the baby, take the baby,” he unapologetically yelled to the midwife.
“We think you might have had a stroke,” I heard as they wheeled me away from my husband and down the long corridor to ICU.
It was 4 days until I saw my daughter again. The beautiful text messages and well wishes from friends congratulating us on the safe arrival of Lacey went unanswered for days. During that time I spent hours alone in the MRI chamber. If I close my eyes I can still hear the audible clicks thumping my ears… 4 x 90 minute MRIs in under 2 days. I spent a lot of time alone during the worst time of my life…
“Don’t move,” they said, but the tears still fell.
When some of the feeling returned into my right side, I started to self-express, had zero post-natal care, dealt with all types of things a new mother should never have to go through, and missed some of the most important moments of my daughter’s life.
My amazing husband Ed, the real superhero of this story, was the first man EVER to be admitted to The Royal Women’s Hospital, Francis Perry Maternity Unit. My sister was my rock, a new mum herself who stepped up and expressed to feed Lacey, along with her own son.
It is during these crucibles in our lives that we learn the most about ourselves. If we don’t search for hope, what else do we have?? It’s impossible to go through what I did and not want to inspire others to look at things differently. Reflection is a powerful tool in personal growth.
Exactly 5 years ago today, I kissed my ten-day-old baby on the head and went in for major brain surgery. Huge risks and no guarantees. One of the greatest gifts we possess as humans is the ability to choose. We might not be able to control a given situation or repress an unwanted emotion, but we can choose how we look at it. We can choose how we respond. We are only one decision away from a totally different life…
This moment was a huge change in trajectory for me; in my life, and in my career. I am one of the lucky brain tumor survivors. The operation was a success, but the weakness in my left arm was permanent. I was told I would “NEVER TREAT AGAIN”. A heart-wrenching thought for a successful clinic owner and passionate ‘hands-on’ practitioner. A prognosis that without the right mindset, could have been more debilitating than the condition itself.
This fuelled my love for teaching, leadership, and communication. Last year I completed my studies in authentic leadership at Harvard Business School, and now clinical leadership at Melbourne University. It was the birth of my employment workshops, business consulting, post-graduate training events, online courses, and of course… GrowthRx – my 3-year passion project.
I’m far from perfect, nor am I virtue signally by sharing my story… I was always one to live life to the fullest, but from that moment forward, I vowed to be more grateful, appreciate what I have and encourage others to do the same.
It is with great pleasure that I introduce to you – ‘The Gratitudist’ paradigm and preface of my book (still a work in progress and set for publication in 2021). A word I feel so strongly about that I trademarked it. Not to own it or capitalise on it, but to ensure this mindset revolution is shared amongst society and gets the momentum it deserves.
By giving this mindset ‘a name’, I hope it will empower others to stop chasing happiness and focus on what we have rather than being weighed down by past experiences, or anxious about the future.
I have put in a submission to have GRATITUDIST DAY registered globally, and the word recognized by the Merrim-Webster dictionary.
We ALL have something or someone to be grateful for… especially now! I would love it if you could share this word and help me bring together the gratitudists of the world.
Bringing you my best…
Jade Scott. xx
If you would like to learn more about ‘The Gratitudist’ you can head here.
Jade Scott is a leading identity within Australia’s allied health community. Having successfully established a number of osteopathy clinics in Victoria Jade recognised an opportunity to create meaningful change and innovation within the Allied Health Industry.