Showing posts from July, 2010

Empowerment, the key to success....

I came across a study about the benefit of empowerment in the rehabilitation process. The reference of the full article is the follwoing: Taylor-Ritzler, T., Balcazar, F., Suarez-Balcazar, Y., Kilbury, R., Alvarado, F., & James, M. (2010). Engaging ethnically diverse individuals with disabilities in the Vocational Rehabilitation system: Themes of empowerment and oppression. Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation, 33(1), 3-14. In this same line of thinking I was remembering when my husband was brought home. At first he was so angry because according to him he wasn't supposed to be here, but with his soldiers. He did not want to enjoy things because he felt so guilty and embarassed. God knows how much sadness this was for me because the husband I knew was happy, vibrant and kind. One day after almost a week he cried and told me "You know I am not supposed to be here, I need to get back to Iraq, please help me to do that". As soon as I mentioned that it was for his best

Are you ready to show your commitment?

When my husband and I married on May 29, 2000 I knew we had a lot of things we were going to share. We dated for four and a half years and we were just a 19 and 20 years old couple of students with big aspirations. I always saw how my husband was determined, responsible, kind, intelligent and many more beautiful qualities that made me fall in love with him. One other thing, he was so funny that automatically my parents fell for him too. These 10 years have been wonderful. Why I am telling all these? well as a caregiver sometimes things can be frustrating but I always look back and know that many of the things that frustrates me now are the result of the brain injury. If I need to repeat the same thing 5 times because my husband forgot he already asked me or if as the result of impulsivity he does something I did not think was right, those are the moments I have to remind myself that I am wearing the shoes of a caregiver. Sometimes I meet spouses that say, "I was not expecting thi

TBI patient or caregiver, please share your story

Today was a good day. The day started taking a friend to the doctor. After his visit we went to lunch and it has been a long time since we had a conversation like today. I missed that. We have been working together for 4 years now and I enjoy every minute. His understanding and support means very much to me. He also is a great friend to my husband, they laugh together and they support each other. This is one of the blessings in my life. Today I finished one of my Summer classes, Qualitative research. Mhhhh, what is that? Maybe this is your question so I will answer very simply. Qualitative research is a type of study that looks at the stories of people and explore their lived experiences. I like when people share their stories because believe it or not we all have a story. I think that is why living in the Southwest I like to collect "story tellers". Going through this class I wanted to know even more about how patients with TBI feel and how their family cope. I think it i

Grief and resilience, how to cope with the loss?

Dear friends, I just started the blog and I am amazed how many people have been writing to me and expressing their support. To ALL of you THANK YOU! During this year, many things have happened, good and not so good. Last year I was accepted to a PhD program and I was very excited to start this new journey in my career but on the other hand my husband was deploying for the third time in the past 5 years. I had so many mixed emotions, things to celebrate but not next to the one I love. Well, my husband left on May 3, 2009 and our anniversary was May 29th so again we missed another important day. I cared when we missed Christmas, anniversaries, birthdays etc. but like everything in the military is all about adapting and overcoming. I love the military life, I feel very proud of being an army wife, it is just something that I cannot describe. When my husband was wounded on June 29, 2009 I felt so worried because I wasn't sure how he was and I remembered that when he called me the f

Do you have a lemon? Let's make lemonade together

Dear friends, Yes! it is true that I haven't taken full responsibility on writing here. I have to admit that the last time I wrote I was writing in tears so I got a little bit scared of writing. I want to be strong and not cry or show emotions. If you are reading my husband's blog you will understand all that we have been going through. I have spent most of my time writing to Senators, Congressmen and others that can change the healthcare system for our Wounded Warriors. The other day I was making some tea and had a lemon in my hands. I looked at it and thought about what my mom always said, "if somebody throws a lemon at you, just catch it and make some good lemonade, then share it with that person". That is exactly what I have been trying to do. I am transforming my sorrow and pain to happiness and joy. Let us work together and unite to make changes, ones that will serve well and will help our wounded soldiers and their family members.