Traumatic Brain Injury and Family
In the past couple of weeks I have been ask several times, How am I doing and how I keep up with so much? I honestly don't know how to answer that question but yes my life is pretty busy. I tried to maintain a good spirit, always a smile in my face and rather look for positive things in my life. It saddens me so much when I see spouses that are in the first stages of having a loved one with traumatic brain injury (TBI). I tried to support them and go back in time and place myself in their shoes but it is never easy to say "It will get better". "It will get better" is a phrase that Victor always told me and at times in a tone like he wanted to convinced me about it. At times I was so frustrated that I said to myself, "yes it will get better for him but what about me?" How did I find happiness in the midst of all the situation? Now 2 years later I look back and I can say things are definitely better. Today Victor and I have found new hobbies, we bond incredibly working hard to be advocates of TBI and we are very strong. In fact some people say that together we are dynamite. We are looking forward to our future.
I would like to see couples thriving in their relationships after a TBI. The reality is that there is so little help and so much burden that I have to yet find somebody that tells me "Oh yes it was so easy and smooth to get care for my wounded warrior". Unfortunately the spouses of Wounded Warriors with TBI need to serve as case managers and that takes too much from our life, it is very time and energy consuming. I just learned a friend got divorced and that really made me feel sad, not because I think people shouldn't get divorced but I knew how much they loved each other. There are situations that requires a separation but it is never a pleasant news.
I always encourage spouses to read and learn about TBI so the symptoms and situations don't become a surprise factor. When Victor left me once in the grocery store and forgot about me I didn't get mad because I knew it was part of his condition. Or when he asked me the same question 10 times in 1 minute I never got mad because I understood, NOTHING was a surprise for me, luckily ;)
For more information about TBI I always visited www.brainline.org, it is a great resource. Most of the time it is easier for the person with TBI to watch a video so Victor and I watched several videos including this one at http://www.youtube.comwatch?v=9izH26JzmIo. Dr. James Kelly is the Director of the National Intrepid Center of Excellence (NICoE). This is the Center where Victor and I went for almost 3 weeks in Bethesda, MD. Dr. Kelly is Victor's TBI hero because Victor learned most of his injury through Dr. Kelly's videos. Now after meeting him, he is not only a very knowledgeable doctor but he is compassionate and humble. Needless to say that the whole staff at the NICoE were fantastic and we commend them for their hard work.
TBI and What Military Families Need to Know: