I will start with some points to bear in mind about this subject before I launch into my personal experience of progress based on my experience and my recent gaining of a diploma.
You can make progress, no matter how old you are! - Headway
It is my opinion that there is little to be gained by holding too much store in others examples of how they have coped with TBI. I think that every TBI has to viewed as a unique event, and the way the individual is affected is very varied, and so are the effects and affects that people experience can vary widely.
I recount my recent experience in the hope that if readers who have survived, and are struggling with a lack of progress, or it has temporarily plateaued, can gain something from my story.
I had a TBI in June 2008, I was 45. A double fracture of the skull, was outside unconscious for 7+ hours. When I was discovered I was air lifted to hospital, in a coma for 4 days, A&E for 20, and hospital for 6 months. I had to learn how to do everything again. Speak, walk, read, write, personal care, virtually everything. I am now working, driving, socialising and still married, but my last achievement it has prompted me to share it.
I recently passed my BTEC Level 2 in Social Care, which had an attached Functional Maths & English element. I had opted to complete this element despite the fact I could have claimed a dispensation for having passed exams 35+ years ago. I opted to do it at the time this because I had struggled with both elements post accident, and my maths had always been a challenge. If I am honest it was a tremendously difficult at times, and something I did considered quitting, but I am so glad I did persevere. It gave me the most satisfying result of my life, one that I am so proud of. I apologise for gloating again, one of the results of my TBI is self obsession, and it doesn't seem to embarrass me to boast about it. Sorry!
I hope that people who have reached the end of their tether or are frustrated at a lack of progress, can get something from my story. It is certainly one in the eye for the consultant who told my wife and I 5 months after my accident, that I my progress was likely to continue for 18 months post accident, but would then plateau, and any recovery would be limited! 'Billhooks' Little did he know that telling me that, would act as a tremendous spur to me. It could have had a very different result, he didn't know me or my character so was IMHO a very irresponsible thing to tell me, particularly as I understand current research and thinking doesn't back it up!
Happy New Year All!
Certainly something to be proud of. It's good to share the success stories. Happy new year to you too.
Hello Miracle, Jules here.
I have worked hard for 6 years trying. Maybe its possible for some but not others.
Pleased you have managed to get there.
Completely agree, I know I have been very fortunate in my recovery, and that is why I started:-
"It is my opinion that there is little to be gained by holding too much store in others examples of how they have coped with TBI. I think that every TBI has to viewed as a unique event, and the way the individual is affected is very varied, and so are the effects and affects that people experience can vary widely."
Completely accept what you say, and I have concerns that every time I come on here telling my tale, I am danger of encouraging people to have unrealistic expectations about their recovery! It is a very fine balance I admit, but I have had plenty of positive comments from TBI survivors, who get value from reading a positive story, as I say a perplexing balance, I hope I get it write. It is my story, know I am very lucky, but think I have a duty to share it; I was inspired by Richard Hammond & James Cracknell's stories, and hope a more mundane persons tale may be useful to to others!
Thanks for your kind words and sorry that despite your work, you have not made it back to where you want to be, I know how lucky I am, say thanks for it every day, wish you all the best for the future x Neal
Hello again MiricleMan - Jules here,
Just 'finished' another days work . Went round in circles again, but each time i do get a bit nearer having completing a task for work. I am so, so, pleased to still be employed. Just hope they will continue to bear with my slow production.
I read your first post and thought - i wish i was in his shoes. Didn't mean any harm mate. Quite the opposite, i suppose i was/am hoping to gleam further insight into how you did so well after going through so much.
I have professionals working with me both for problems of reoccurring nightmares and i have an OT. But, i am still struggling to get to 'that' point where i can feel i am eventually on the right track again. You will know better than me how difficult it is to keep your outside world spinning like a dish on a stick as twist and turn everyday trying to produce what you need to.
Hope i am making sense - in short, fantastic to read your post, please tell me more
It is very kind of you to drop in and post.
A few new members are family members and very fearful of the future and I have asked them to read your profile to give them hope.
Congratulations on your diploma, stay stubborn and keep moving forward.
Wishing you and yours a very good year ahead.
Love n hugs
Well done! I was told that my husband would never recover from his bi and that I should put him in residential care. He never recovered completely but has led a reasonably normal life for the last 28 years, despite having memory problems. There are success stories and we should celebrate them.
Congrats on your achievement.
Well done; in 1967 when I had by TBI there was no follow up after being kicked out from hospital and certainly nothing from our Social Services as they were then. You had to get on with it.
During my recovery I studied for and obtained my qualifications to HND level.
Now 50 years on [in July] I'm still epileptic, I see things rather difficulty, have very few mates - apparently common with us BI survivors - and just carry on.
Its how it has to be. Achievment? I think a necessity.
Hi Brian, couldn't agree more how different things are now, well certainly in my experience. Headway, other charities and the media, ect, have done a great job, in bringing Aquired BI's and TBI's in particular, more into public focus. I am indebted, as have said in the past, to the NHS, carers (for a short while), my employer, colleagues, friends and family! I can't leave without saying, that my wife and mum, (who now volunteers at Headway) have played a massive role in my recovery!
Sorry to hear how difficult life has been; your 50 years post TBI will have furnished you with good survival skills! Best in luck in the future,
I ought to give a 'Big Up', to those who have suffered BI, whether it is because they were well know before or other wise, now spread the message about the 'invisible' disability. James Cracknel's story has poignant for me. He, like me, had a frontal lobe fracture; my wife said much of the travails encountered by himself and his family were horribly familiar. I was determined to read again, and the first thing I read was his book that includes his TBI, 'Touching Distance', It took me months at first reading, but I recently finished it for the fourth time, and I have got more from it every time. Heartily recommended for survivors and their families!
Should read "Now 50 years on [in July] I'm still epileptic, I see things rather differently, ........."
I can blame only predictive text for this howler, apologies.
Excellent, well done!
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