Decisions or Challenges TBI Families/Caregivers Must Make Early-on.

Our first decision was that David was NOT going to stay in bed the rest of his life and we refused to accept the doctor’s prognosis that he would never walk again or participate in life. Our first challenge was to find a facility that would be able to provide the 24/7 care he needed after being released from the hospital. He was not accepted just anywhere, and it was difficult based upon where and who would pay for his care. The closest Acute-Care facility to accept his medical insurance was located nearly 2 hours away. Although it was a long drive, it was within our acceptable parameters.

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The day David was transferred to the Acute-Care facility (November 9th), we were there to help him with the difficult transition. While I readied my camera…for a split second, David smiled at me and we knew he was ‘in there’, although the lights were dim, we also knew we would walk this journey with him.

During the following nine months, I was able to stay with my sister, who lives in South Florida. In-between caring for David’s 2-year old daughter, there were weekly visits to see him. On off days I called vendors from his company, contacted banks and credit card companies, to let them know about his accident and resolving any debt. Some understood while others were downright rude. I still can’t fathom why they couldn’t grasp the gravity of the situation. I often broke down while talking with them.

David had an inventory left over from his recording studio that was not sold prior to his moving and his dad organized and catalogued the equipment. He then advertised and sold all that he could and the remaining items were taken to the local e-Bay store where they were sold for pennies on the dollar.

Family is everything! Family is a critical element in our ability to care for David. Without them, I don’t believe we could have gotten where we are today. My sister and brother-in-law opened their hearts and home and willingly played a major role in our family drama. Because of their medical backgrounds, they were able to help us oversee David’s medical needs, checking CT scans, and monitoring medications.

My sister dove right in by keeping David as limber as possible, knowing that if his limbs didn’t stay pliable, they would contract. She often brought in cookies and brownies for the staff as a way to show our appreciation, bribing them so to speak so that they hopefully would keep a watchful eye on David.

In The Whisper Mystery Trilogy, the main character named Ellen is able to exceed through the strong efforts of her family. I learned firsthand just how powerful this combination is….you just have to let people help.

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