SPEAK OUT! Itty-Bitty GIANT Steps
SPEAK OUT! Itty-Bitty Giant Steps will provide a venue for brain-injury survivors and caregivers to shout out their accomplishments of the week.
If you have an Itty-Bitty Giant Step and you would like to share it, just send an email to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you are on Facebook, you can simply send a Private Message to me. It need only be a sentence or two. I’ll gather the accomplishments and post them with your name on my blog approximately once a week. (If you do not want your last name to be posted, please tell me in your email or Private Message.)
I hope we have millions of Itty-Bitty Giant Steps.
Here are this week’s Itty-Bitty Giant Steps.
Michele Dempsey (survivor)…Sometimes doctors tell you that you will never walk, talk, or do other things again. They told me that when I was first injured seven years ago. I think they don’t want to give anyone false hope or something. In my case, I believed what they said. I came home in a wheelchair, and I couldn’t speak well. They said that I wouldn’t walk or talk. Now I do both! Some days, I don’t do either well. If I am tired, it is worse, but I walk with a cane, and I can talk pretty well. When I was tested, I did poorly on everything four years in a row. They said I that I would not be able to handle my own money, have a checking account, or shop on my own. It took time, but I slowly got better at the things they said I couldn’t do.
I shop and pay my own bills, and I recently got a checking account! I was excited, but scared, to do it, but I finally did it. I wrote my first checks yesterday. This morning, my nurse went over everything, and I did it right! I know it is a small thing, but it feels good to be able to do this on my own. I guess what I am learning over all these years is that, if people – even doctors – and testing say you can’t, keep trying. Try again and again and don’t give up! I am proud of myself today over something that might be a little thing to others, and I like it.
Megan Erikson (survivor)…I found a support group! I had to put my pride aside and say, “I do need help and support.” 🙂
Sue R. Hannah (survivor)…I went back to physical therapy today. Not only did I have an awesome session, but I also learned a very valuable lesson. My most recent acupuncturists and my vision therapist assumed that they knew what was best for me. I believe their heart was in the right place, but not so much, their awareness. Emily, my physical therapist, recognized that I needed to work towards MY level of functioning – not anyone else’s. Giving me skills that I’ve never had is a pretty silly goal. I have been impaired since I was so young that I have adapted and developed lots of work-arounds. What the other practitioners didn’t realize is that I didn’t lose skills. I NEVER had them! I guess part of this occurred because I didn’t stress how early my trauma happened, and they assumed that I fit in a box, which I don’t. It’s hard for me to tell people how I got hurt because often they are traumatized by hearing my story. I’ve learned that I need to be careful about whose advice to take, regardless of what their training has been. Can anyone relate?
Michael Lee Savage (survivor)…My wife, Patty, “threw me under the bus” this morning by saying I would walk “cane-free” into my therapist’s office. Well, I’m never one to back down from a challenge, so I walked from the outside deck, over the threshold, and up and down the hallway in front of my physical therapist. He said, “Looks like we have a new starting point.” Back at home, I hit the treadmill for 35 minutes and then looped the downstairs hallway four times “cane-free.” For the first time in six years, I felt human again.
Susan Shacka (survivor)…My Itty-Bitty Giant Step is trying to be calmer.
Damian Sill (survivor)…I am a person who has overcome TBI. Almost eighteen years ago, I was nearly dead. Today I am fully alive. I am living a wonderful life. I have a great job as a nurse. I own my own home. I am in a beautiful relationship with a great future ahead of me. I look forward to life today. Initially, I was so confused. My life was difficult. But, I kept working away one day at a time, and today I reap the rewards. Thanks to all who helped me along my way. – Feeling Blessed
Dana Wiedenmann (survivor)…I flew to San Diego at Christmas.
Sandra Williams (survivor)…I am able to maintain my job. Huge! Absolutely huge! I attended an early morning DAC (Disability Action Center) meeting, and I am helping my husband start a business. I am ditzy, but I will press on. I can’t find words; my ears ring; I am seeing double; and I cry a lot, but I will not stop. I will not be beaten!
YOU did it!
Congratulations to all contributors!
(Clip Art compliments of Bing.)