you are not alone…
Last Wednesday marked the first day of Spring, which for all intents and purposes, has become one of my favorite days of the year. Spring marks the beginning of warmer weather, the arrival of a new baseball season, and the opportunity to change into shorts and a T-shirt after work – a personal favorite.
The beginning of Spring also occurs during one of the most important months of the year – March – which is Brain Injury Awareness Month.
I have written a few posts about patients and friends I’ve come across who have suffered Brain Injuries. There was the story of “Bella” – a coworker and a friend who was involved in a serious car accident – who spent the next year recovering and rehabbing from the effects of her head injury, and continues to make progress everyday. There was the story of Joyce – a patient in Houston who had surgery for an AVM – and did about 16 months of VT. Then there was Cavin, who fell 20ft off a scaffolding and was in a coma for over a week, and is currently in VT. Both Joyce and Cavin graciously agreed to allow me to share their stories and their blogs. If you haven’t already, I strongly encourage you to read them both.
For those of you looking for an update, Bella has submitted her first three Open Book Questions and hopes to sit for the Written and Oral examination this year on the road to completing her COVT. Cavin, who is musically inclined, recently played in his first concert since his injury in 2011.
The Brain Injury Association of America maintains a website that offers some valuable information, and I encourage you to visit. Four points made on the website that I would like to highlight:
- A person with a brain injury is a person first
- No two brain injuries are exactly the same
- The effects of a brain injury are complex and vary greatly from persona to person
- The effects of a brain injury depend on such factors as cause, location, and severity
With the arrival of Spring, many children will be excited about playing sports, riding their bikes or skateboards, and other outdoor activities. We can all remind our patients to wear their helmets, fasten their seat belts, and think twice about jumping off that trampoline in the backyard. While we cannot prevent every Brain Injury, we can remind our patients and parents of the old cliche – an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
One of my favorite parts of the website for Brain Injury Association of America is found here. Near the bottom of the page, under the Finding More Information section reads the following sentence: You are not alone.
Truly, the patients I’ve come in contact with who have suffered Brain Injuries have two fundamental needs: Someone who understands what they are going through, and someone who is able to help them put their life back together. Behavioral Optometry is in a unique position of offering both. For me, that’s pretty cool.