Category Archives: TBI

Social security

Social security has decided it’s time to review my son’s case. I’ve already filled out one packet of forms and returned those last week, only to get two more thick packets this week. Nothing more depressing than having to relive things, to have to write down what all he could do before the accident and what all he can no longer do. How active he was before compared to now. How he had friends he saw daily before, to now, barely seeing or even hearing from anyone for months on end.
I really hate this.

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Anniversary of the Worst Day Ever

3 years ago today, about this time, I received the phone call that changed our lives forever.

3 years, yet right now, I am fighting tears.  Why does the date make a difference?

He’s here.  I was just talking to him.  I should not be feeling so sad!

So what if the doctors told us “We’ll know in a year how full his recovery is.  What he has in a year is it.”  They were Wrong!!!  He’s shown improvement in areas well past the first year.  He is still improving!!!  He’s now on the treadmill daily, 6 months ago, a treadmill was out of the question!

My emotions are so all over the place right now, I don’t even know what to write.  I need to just get busy and get my mind occupied.

Just let me know, Son!!!!!

My oldest son had a lot of problems with his catheter while he was in the hospitals.  Once, it was left in for weeks longer than it should have been – this happened after changing hospitals, I don’t feel there was enough communication?  It would also become blocked. We ended up at the ER more than once. The worst ER visit was utterly ridiculous!  Several hours in the bright, busy, hallway with him on his gurney, fighting his father and I horribly!  He kept trying to take his trache out.  On one of my many trips to the nurse’s desk for help, I was informed that we were his parents, we should be able to handle him.  Excuse me?!  We were in no way medically trained, and had no training whatsoever on traches, or how to “handle” a TBI patient who was in pain! I did remind this man, who was supposed to be a nurse, that my son had a TBI, and they had him in a brightly lit, busy area, and that he needed to be in a quiet, darkened room!!  We were also going on several HOURS that his catheter had been completely blocked!!!!    Let’s not forget, I was also about 8 months pregnant at this time. I have also been told that his bladder ended up getting perforated.  Yes. I am still very bitter about that visit.  It ended up being over 8 hours before they finally got a dr in that was able to finally get him some relief. That is one hospital that our family will NOT go to unless there is absolutely no other alternative!!!!

I really believe that all those problems are causes behind his current problems of bed wetting, and not always making it to the bathroom in time.  I believe that, and understand that.  But, I do have to ask, Why can’t he just TELL me when he’s had an accident instead of just leaving the room and leaving the mess for me to find?????? Especially when I just had to clean up a spill from his 2 year old sister, doing laundry, making his bed, and all I wanted to do was cut out a princess dress for Munchkin.

Concerts!

My boys and I have always loved going to concerts.  Last week, the oldest came in and started talking about an upcoming concerts he really wanted to go to, Dad really does not want to go, so I messaged a couple of his cousins, and worked it out for him to go. Middle son also wants to go with his girlfriend.  Youngest son started begging, he hasn’t been to a concert.  Dad said he’d keep Munchkin, and I could go, so now youngest can also go.  Oldest was very excited.

Now, here we are, 2 days before the concert, one of my nephew’s and his wife have gotten everyone’s tickets, and the oldest says he doesn’t want to go.

And, I am really not surprised by this.  I actually pretty much expected it.  It’s practically normal these days for him to want to do something, then change his mind several times.  I am expecting a difficult time getting him into the vehicle on Sunday.  But, I’m counting on my nephews to make it happen.  They’re pretty good at convincing him to get back with the plan, and, if nothing else, they’re big enough to threaten to just load him up in the car!  Like I said, it’s gotten pretty routine – want to go, change mind several times, fight to actually go, then have a great time when he gets to our destination, and ask why we don’t go out and do more often.

This also is not his first concert since his wreck, he’s been to a few others with his girlfriend and his brother.  It’s My first concert since his wreck/munchkin’s birth, I’m pretty excited about getting out with my boys, nephews, and their wives/girlfriends. My friend has been laughing at me, but, oh well, thanks to my teenage boys, I actually like Seether!  I wish my husband would go, but we can’t convince him.   

Woo Hoo!

The oldest has been at his girlfriend’s house since Monday.  Last night, she posted a video on my fb of him actually walking on a treadmill!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  I almost cried!  This was the first time I have seen him taking full strides with both feet instead of his normal take a step, then catch up with the other foot!! My husband and I are now looking for a treadmill for him so he’ll have one at both places.

I never know what to title these things!

I am so grateful and I thank God daily that my son is still alive!!!!!!   Do Not get me wrong on that!  I could not imagine life without him!!!!

But, I do miss the son I used to have, before the wreck that caused his TBI. He’s still my son, but, yet, there are differences.  His personality is a little different. He used to always want to go do things, now it’s not always very easy to get him out of the house.  Even his looks are a little different.  His voice is not the same. His laughter isn’t even the same.  It’s hard to put into words… 

It’s hard not to cry some nights, after everyone has gone to bed.  It’s almost like I mourn the son I had,  yet am so thankful I still have the son I have.  I cannot imagine how he must feel, as active as he used to be, and now he’s stuck in a wheelchair or using a walker.  His coordination is so off. I think about how he and I used to go deer hunting with our compound bows, how he and his Dad would go deer hunting during rifle and muzzle loader seasons, and wonder if it’ll ever happen again?  We haven’t gone fishing or camping in almost 3 years now.  I miss it all, but yet, I’m afraid to try, afraid he’ll lose his balance using his walker and fall, or not be able to get around in his wheelchair.  Not to mention, the thought of trying to camp or fish with a toddler added to the equation, and I just do not feel up to the task.

Even trips are more difficult.  We have learned that just because a place is advertised as “Handicap accessible” it may not be truly accessible for him.  I have had to argue with motel managers while trying to make reservations to get them to actually tell me what the room’s bathroom is like because not all bathrooms are set up the same, and some will not work for him, even though they stuck a bar on the wall and labeled it “accessible.”  We’ve been in one that his chair wouldn’t even fit through the door!

He, along with a lot of other people, think that their choices only affect their lives.  That is wrong.  His lack of sleep which caused him to fall asleep while driving which in turn, caused his wreck, has affected our entire family and even our friends.  We used to get together with our friends, but now it’s so seldom, it’s pretty much nonexistent. 

I am not looking for pity, this is not a “feel sorry for us” post.  I just want people to realize that they have to take care of themselves, do NOT drive if you are overly tired.  Don’t think “Oh, I’m almost there, I’ll be fine.”  It is way too easy to fall asleep and not even realize it! In a moment your life, and everyone’s,  has changed.

Yet another post on Suicide

My heart and prayers go out to the family of Robin Williams.  The news devastated me.  There is very little “celebrity news” that affects me, that I even pay attention to, I guess it’s because my feelings are, I really don’t know them, just their names and public personas.  James Garner’s passing made me feel very sad, and now Robin Williams.  I have nearly cried several times.  I absolutely loved watching him, movies, stand-up, interviews. 

I can’t help but wonder if now people when pay attention when I tell them that suicide is a near daily fear, some days worse than others. And, I ask for help for my son. Some days, we do not dare leave him home alone. When watching the news last night, and they stated How Mr. Williams did it, I just cringed and thought, “Well, now they gave my son another idea.” Anyone else ever notice how the media says too much a lot of the time?

Depression is probably our biggest battle with our oldest.  And, I can understand why.  He cannot do the majority of the things that he used to do. He cannot walk on his own, he cannot drive. He gets extremely shaky.  His short term memory sucks. There have been small improvements, but not a lot in the last year.

His long term memory is there.  He remembers all the friends he used to have. He remembers all the fun they used to have. He remembers all the things he did for them. He remembers going hunting and fishing.

He notices that no one comes to see him, or comes to get him the way he used to go get them when they didn’t have a vehicle and he did.

He has stated countless times that no one even remembers him, he can’t do anything, and he sees no reason to go on.

I pray constantly.

I know that there isn’t an outside source that will “cure” his depression and suicidal thoughts.  But, I do know/notice that when he does actually get out and have fun, for the next few days, he’s somewhat better and motivated to do his therapy and do more. He has Hope for a couple days.

I get angry at times.  When I see his old friends, they ask how he is, and tell me to tell him “Hi” for them.  I tell them to go see him, he gets bored and lonely, I point out that he sits at home with me and his younger siblings.  They say they will, but then they don’t.  I tell him that it’s not that they have forgotten him, it’s that between college, jobs, new marriages, new babies, they really don’t have a lot of time.  I make excuses for them. I have flat out told family members and close friends at times that we’re on “suicide watch.”  I have asked for help.  Help seldom comes.

All I can do is pray constantly.