TBI – Survivors, Caregivers, Family, and Friends

Posts tagged ‘Michelle Lee Bonnenfant’

SPEAK OUT! . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Itty-Bitty GIANT Steps

Michelle Lee Bonnenfant (survivor)…With hubby’s help, I made it through a busy grocery store. pix0138Ken, my hubby, got me in and out in one piece! He even stood three feet behind me in the check out so that I would not get crowded by people. It was the first time in months that I went through a check out. I was plagued by a lot of sweat and chest pain, but I still did it. I hate my TBI and PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder), but Ken gave me a big hug and told me that he was proud of me. I’m exhausted, but pleased with myself!

Cara Lauderdale Eberle (caregiver)…The one-year anniversary of my husband’s accident was April 1st. While I was at work sitting at a table of four-year-olds trying to get them to do a project with me, Eberle,  Cara Lauderdale  FlowersI saw them all stop and look up. Standing next to me was my husband holding a beautiful bouquet of flowers. I was in complete shock! He hasn’t shown any concern for the feelings of others since the accident. He told me he thought that he should do something to thank me for helping him get through the last year. This was definitely a breakthrough moment for us. 🙂

David Figurski (survivor)…I am excited! I took delivery of a Catrike 700 recumbent trike. It’s the same model that was used by Catherine Brubaker (a two-time TBI survivor) and Dan Zimmerman (a stroke Figurski, David Trikesurvivor) on their five-month, cross-country ride from Washington State to Florida. Cat and Dan espouse their new-found freedom, and their new physical capabilities are truly amazing. They both believe that riding a recumbent trike is great therapy. Also, my wife, Donna, just took delivery of the Catrike Pocket, a slightly smaller trike. Donna, Cat, Dan, and I plan to ride together.

Corina Mendoza (survivor)…I passed my teaching exam for Special Education! I passed both teaching exams I needed on the first try.

Mendoza, Corina Test Scores 033015



YOU did it!

Congratulations to all contributors!

(Clip Art compliments of Bing.)

SPEAK OUT! Itty-Bitty GIANT Steps

SPEAK OUT! Itty-Bitty GIANT Steps

Itty-Bitty GIant Steps for Blog


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 donnaodonnellfigurski@gmail.com.

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.

Sara Catherine Birch (caregiver)…An Itty-Bitty Giant Step this week – hubby is going back to his old job on Thursday. He will try a short shift to see if he could build up his hours slowly and get back his deputy title. Fingers crossed. His boss is keeping his hours low for the first couple of weeks so that his schedule won’t affect our benefits and he won’t have to worry about money.

Sara Catherine Birch (caregiver)…I’m very proud of hubby. I came home from work yesterday to find out how hubby’s looking after both kids (for the first time) went. As I walked in the door, I could hear the washing machine going. He had gotten both kids to bed, emptied and refilled the dishwasher, emptied the tumble-dryer, and put a wash on. Yeah, he definitely deserved the Domino’s pizza I was carrying.

Michelle Lee Bonnenfant (survivor)…Today I went to Walmart with my daughter and husband, despite the setbacks caused by my PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder). I only panicked once! I got separated and forgot where I was in the store. Thank god, I had my cell phone! Small step, but I’m trying. Any store is bad for me. I can’t believe that I did a big, busy store! Needless to say, I’m exhausted and have a pounding headache. No pain, no gain!

Sidney Chronister (survivor)…I’m feeling super PROUD of myself. Today has been the first time ever (since my TBI four years ago) that I managed to cook all by myself. I even read a recipe all by myself (LOL)! I’m progressing very slowly. Let’s just hope I can do the same thing tomorrow – or in a week. Let’s pray for that. Thank you all once again for all the ENCOURAGING words you give me DAILY (especially in the days of bad weather). May God give us all more strength (He knows we have it), more patience (we NEED IT), and less crazy anger-outbursts. God bless you all, and have a blessed New Year’s. Happy 2015!!!

Ellie K. Payton (caregiver)…Today Claus Nowell, my 20-year-old, 10-months-post son, took his first steps in a walking frame. There were nurses and therapists “acheerin’.”

This is a huge Itty-Bitty Giant Step – one I’ve been waiting for with so much hope.

YOU did it!

Congratulations to all contributors!

(Clip Art compliments of Bing.)

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