TBI – Survivors, Caregivers, Family, and Friends

I Am Blessed


Brandy Hunter

presented by

Donna O’Donnell Figurski

Girl Blogger cartoon_picture_of_girl_writingI am blessed to be truly loved by a man who may not always understand my emotional outbursts. He is a true blessing in my life for even trying to deal with the behavior that is now instilled in me forever. This same man understands how stressful everyday things are to someone like me (a traumatic brain injury – TBI – survivor). He insists that I stay home and work as a housewife because I cannot deal with simple jobs outside of the home. But, if I choose to pursue other opportunities, he fully supports that decision.

I am blessed to have obtained my BA in Communication Studies after my injury and also to have graduated from a university and with a 3.79 GPA. It helped that the TBI made my stubbornness more intense!

I am blessed to have my mom and dad bring me back to life by refusing to accept the surgeon’s saying that I will have to live in a group-home for the remainder of my life. (I was 24 years old at the time the injury occurred. I am 35 now.) My parents put their own lives on hold so I could have one myself.Brandy Hunter Survivor 050515

I am blessed to have two loving canines to help me through the difficult days by simply “listening” or offering a much-needed cuddle.

I am blessed to have the ability to express myself verbally, even if the injury left my once radio-worthy voice with a slurred way of speaking, which makes me have to repeat myself numerous times a day.

I am blessed to still be able to write well. Now, due to the injury, I am focusing on my writing abilities, not my speaking ones.

I am blessed to have an excuse for wanting to nap almost daily.

I am blessed to be able to live on my own – one and a half and two hours away from my parents.

I am blessed to have no visible scars from the car accident in which I sustained my brain injury.

I am blessed not to have lost memories. (I only needed to be reminded of the three years before the accident.)

Eleven years after my TBI, I’m very blessed that things are not as “foggy” as they once were.

I am blessed to still be able to physically write (pen to paper), cumbersome as it may be for me at times. I am grateful for the availability of Post-It Notes.

I am blessed to have both of my grandparents (with whom I grew up) still alive and willing to help me in any way that they’re able to (even though it is my turn to do for them).

I am blessed to have loved ones try to understand the difficulties I encounter daily and for their assistance (and for not doing whatever I’m trying to do). I appreciate that they accept how things may take a bit longer for me to accomplish.

I am blessed to have traveled to New York, lived on Long Island, traveled to California and Nevada (Vegas, baby!), lived in England for three months, and to currently reside in my home state of Alabama (finally back in the “one red light, one locally owned supermarket” town in which I graduated junior high and high schools).

Life is good…no…Life is BETTER for me now than it was prior to the TBI that changed my life.

Brandy Hunter 2 Survivor 050515Thank you, Brandy Hunter.

Any views and opinions of the Guest Blogger are purely his/her own.

(Clip Art compliments of Bing.)

(Photos compliments of Brandy Hunter.)


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Comments on: "SPEAK OUT! . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Guest Blogger: Brandy Hunter . . . . I Am Blessed" (10)

  1. Tammy Crocker said:

    I love you Brandy! You are a gift from God! Twice! Mom


  2. Great blog! So positive! When I think of mine, I know how lucky I am. I have no physical problems, no seizures, surgeries, medicine (except for adhd meds my doctor as given me. I chose not to take them anymore bc I want to try to be comfortable on my own. It’s kinda hard, but again, I am blessed! Then I miss my best friend who was killed in the accident. And the guilt comes. It never leaves. Best of luck to you!


    • gm1123,

      I appreciate your reading Brandy’s article and commenting on it. Come back often for more blog pieces or survivor and caregiver interviews.

      Sounds like you are carrying a heavy load too.

      Donna O’Donnell Figurski


  3. J. Patrick McGrail, Ph.D. said:

    It was fabulous to hear from you and hear your story in more detail. You are blessed but also gifted. So much more awaits you.

    All my best thoughts,

    J. Patrick McGrail, Ph.D.


    • J. Patrick McGrail, Ph.D., thanks so much for reading Brandy’s article on my blog. We both appreciate it.

      Donna O’Donnell Figurski


  4. Wow…everyone , I genuinely appreciate your comment! I am seeing this around 6 months later! Thank you for reading…

    Mom: I love you more than a lot of folks think is healthy. LOL Thank you for “bringing me back to life” by refusing to accept what doctors–BRAIN SURGEONS–predicted. And then helping me to LIVE that life.

    GM1123: I would love to be in touch more often; it seems as if you and I have a lot in common…and let’s face it, not many people have experiences similar to ours, or if they do, they (understandably) cannot talk about it or are unable to share.

    Dr. McGrail: Thank you for taking time out of your busy day to not only read, but comment on my writing, too. I wrote this with the intention of doing something like this weekly…I failed at that task, because I would “pen” (type) the same thing in which I typed initially! I should write what I am thankful for in my life/blessed to experience because I noticed that it made me stop being so annoyed. In fact, I think about the things I wrote STILL; it helps me on days when life is overwhelming. Perhaps, I should begin writing ONCE a month about the things for which I am thankful…November seems a great start! I’ll do it near the end of each month, maybe that will make me write 2 times a month about things for which I am thankful/grateful…then, a snowball effect should begin.


    • Brandy, the hardest part of writing is sitting down to do it. Once you start the writing takes on a life of its own. So my advice, and it’s also advice for me, is to JUST WRITE. You’ll be amazed at how much you accomplish.

      Donna O’Donnell Figurski


  5. Yes Brandy you are blessed and are doing what YOU need to be doing. Here is to more success in your writing!


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