TBI – Survivors, Caregivers, Family, and Friends

Global Head Shots Unique


Timothy Guetling

(presented by Donna O’Donnell Figurski)


Timothy Guetling  TBI Survivor

Timothy Guetling
TBI Survivor

My TBI occurred in 1972. At that time, neurologists were known as “neurosurgeons.” The only test that was available for testing at that time was an X-ray. The neurosurgeon told my mother, “I won’t give a dime for his recovery!”

After being unconscious for nineteen days, which included thirteen days of right-side paralysis, and forty-six days in the hospital, including twice-a-day intensive physical therapy, I came home to a new world. After about one year, I was deemed “100% recovered.” I knew better, but each time I tried to speak of it, I was shut down with “You are using that as an excuse.”

I missed a semester of my junior year in high school, but I graduated with my class in 1974. I then entered the world of work and college. I was successful. I worked many positions, and I graduated college. There was always the knowledge that something inside was not right, but I kept up in the world.

In 1998, due to recurring accidents at my place of employment, I was sent to be checked by a neurologist. X-rays, an EEG (electroencephalogram), an EKG (electrocardiogram), a CT scan (computerized tomography), and an MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) revealed “pressed plates” in my neck at vertebrae C4-C5, C5-C6, and C6-C7. These vertebrae deal with hand-eye coordination and balance/dizziness. My vision, my cognitive reflex/response from my brain to spinal cord, and my equilibrium were deemed 85% on a good day.

My work and recreation patterns changed. In 2011, due to recurring repercussions from my injury, I stopped working. SSDI (Social Security Disability Insurance) was approved in 2013. Now my equilibrium is at best 75%. My success is right here on this site and other sites related to TBI, brain injury, addiction/abuse, PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder), etc. I offer my knowledge from my experience of over 42 years of “recovery evolution.” It is with a smile on my face and tears in my eyes that I can say, with no sadness or fear, that you and I are Global Head Shots Unique. We know more than anyone about us. Lets talk!


(Disclaimer: The views or opinions in this post are solely that of the author.)

If you have a story to share and would like to be a part of the SPEAK OUT! project, please submit your TBI Tale to me at donnaodonnellfigurski@gmail.com. I will publish as many stories as I can.


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