Here is what happened when she asked if she could give out my number…
I felt honored, of course! Let me explain.
Here we are at the end of March – head injury awareness month – and it has taken a phone number request to finally prompt me to write this post and do my part to bring awareness to this often invisible, life changing injury.
This morning a friend asked me if she could give my number to the daughter of an acquaintance who has just suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI). TBI most commonly results from a violent blow to the head. It often causes complex reactions in the brain that can impair thinking, reasoning, behavior, and movement.
You most likely know at least one person who has suffered some type of TBI. Head injuries are incredibly common (roughly 10 million per year worldwide) and can be brought on by a myriad of impacts, from distant blasts to falls to car accidents to sports injury. A recent study found that a little league football player has an average of 240, and up to 585, head impacts per season!
However it happens the end result is often a person who LOOKS fine but may suffer from some or all of the following (and more):
• Mood swings and anger
If you have read my book, Beyond Rainmaking, you already know that many of the techniques for accelerated learning, recall, focus, and performance sprung from my own experience with traumatic brain injury.
If it helps you or someone you know to better understand this often invisible injury, then I will feel like I have made a difference. I am always honored when you refer friends to me and always glad to answer questions about my TBI experience.
Here’s my TBI story:
When I was 15, we visited friends in rural Canada. Our hostess took me riding and at the end of a long day on the trails, she offered to let me ride her horse to the barn. It was an off track racehorse that took off for the barn as soon as I was in the saddle.
We went through the field, into the arena, and then into the barn. At some point I lost a stirrup, reached down for it, and my head hit the door jamb of the barn (we think). I cracked my skull and woke up in ICU in Toronto several days later.
They said I’d have seizures for the rest of my life but I haven’t. They said I’d never regain hearing in my right ear but I did. They said I’d never smell or taste again but my taste came back 100% and some of my sense of smell has partially returned – still working on that one. My recovery is an ongoing project. And yes, I still ride horses.
After weeks in the hospital and hospice, we returned home to Louisiana. I looked fine. Nobody but my mother, sister, and the friends we made in Canada understood what I’d been through. There really wasn’t much information readily available about head injuries back then and my injury was totally invisible.
“Looking fine” resulted in some terrifying misunderstandings.
Nobody treated me any differently. Everybody around me expected me to act normal or like I’d been before. I tried so hard! I also tried to be tough and fit in because, at 15, nobody wants to be different or seen as a complainer. I felt like I had to act fine, too.
From the outside you couldn’t see how tired I was or the unexplainable, explosive anger that sometimes welled up inside me. You couldn’t see how sad I was about losing my sense of smell. You couldn’t see that the words moved around on the page when I tried to read. You didn’t know that I was no longer able to recite the months of the year in order and that I was suddenly adding and subtracting backwards…Because I looked fine.
So I became a tough, moody, rebellious, 15 year old girl with a sudden drop in grades, no attention span, and who slept all the time. My parents had recently divorced and my dad (a successful trial lawyer) became convinced that I was on drugs – because it sure looked that way.
Of course I wasn’t on drugs but I now understand why he would think that I was. He didn’t know any better and likely had people around him asking why I was acting differently.
He tried to put me into drug rehab. He tried to have my mom – a scientist, who was steadily, methodically pulling together the information she needed to put me back together – declared an unfit parent.
He wanted to know what was going on so he tapped our phones. He had us followed. He followed me and my friends. That lasted for about a (very stressful) year.
I learned to thrive anyway.
My mom was successful in finding information and techniques that helped me overcome the fatigue, the profound dyslexia, the lack of focus, the unreal moodiness, the emotional trauma, and the panic attacks/anxiety. She really helped me get back on track and ignited in me a voracious curiosity for finding ways to perform better, to excel, to overcome obstacles, to follow my passions, and to truly thrive – no matter what.
I left high school early and went to work in sales. I eventually went to college at 22 years old. I was on the Dean’s List and graduated with a 3.7 grade point average – with no accommodations. I made it through law school easily and passed the bar exam on the first try. I have mastered the art of learning, recall, and focus.
My TBI was a great gift that can benefit everyone.
The years between my head injury and my return to school were amazingly educational. I learned Neuro-linguistic Programming (NLP), meditation, and discovered a wealth of ways to focus, plan, learn, and manage every aspect of goal achievement.
The big surprise was that this is not just for people with head injuries – everybody can benefit from this information! It can help anyone get what they truly desire in life.
My special understanding and experience with using methods like NLP, Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT), and imagery for recovering mental acuity allows me to help my clients vastly improve their mental performance in any area of life – from personal to professional.
I help my clients get on track to their success.
In my practice, my clients are generally professionals who are working toward an important goal. Some of them have had something intervene in their progress in some way – it could be anything from an unexpected event or change to a personal setback. I help them to get back on track toward their best possible outcome – on track to their success.
I’m always so honored when clients are referred to me. I am always glad to answer any questions you or a friend might have about TBI recovery or making their dreams come true.
If your goals aren’t happening fast enough or if you feel like you have hit a plateau, contact me for a complimentary consultation. Together, we can make your dreams come true.