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Three of my four sons abruptly walked out of my life with no explanation and no communication. I was being ghosted long before that term even existed. It was, by far, the most painful part of my journey.
To be human is to grieve, and everyone grieves differently and in their own time. But there is a type of grief that many people experience that is less common, less talked about, but none the less real and painful. It’s called ambiguous grief or ambiguous loss.
If you are anything like me, when you or your loved one are first given a diagnosis, you research. There is so much information available online, it can be overwhelming or frustrating to know which is accurate, but I find research helpful in being able to report or advocate to doctors for both myself and my loved ones.
Genevieve Chase accomplishes everything she attempts. She made master sergeant in 15 years in the Army reserves... she was inducted into the Army Women’s Hall of Fame. In the military, she learned Pashto and was an intelligence soldier in Afghanistan. But, like a lot of military women, one dream eludes her: She hasn’t been able to get pregnant.
While packing for our trip, I never suspected that PTSD would steal a ride with us, but two of our four nights away found me with the type of horrifying PTSD episodes reminiscent of the early years after my accident.
How does a traumatic brain injury affect the way you cook and eat? Filmmaker Cheryl Green, who has a brain injury, satirizes her own experiences in the kitchen in a short video called “Cooking With Brain Injury.”
Every year since my 2010 traumatic brain injury, I’ve taken the time to reflect back on changes that have come to pass during the prior year. This past year was no different, although what my reflection showed was not what some may call progress. Progress is not always measured with tangible facts.
In just a few days, the ten year anniversary of my cycling accident will be here. I have come a long way since everything changed in 2010. But just because things are okay most of the time does not mean that my brain injury disappeared.
I have been living as a brain injury survivor for almost a decade. Today I am sitting in my office, a busy day of work ahead of me. Never one to miss deadlines, I blocked off some time to let you know how I’m doing — how I am REALLY doing.
Taylor’s pickup truck represented Taylor’s work ethic, his expression of masculinity, his love for country music, and a space of fun memories and experiences. Perhaps most glaringly, it represented something Taylor feels he has lost — his freedom. The decision to sell it came after another night of seizures.
From all aspects of the pandemic, societal as well as scientific, we are still only months into learning the full scope of life after COVID-19. But I have a feeling that some people may be dealing with cognitive challenges for the rest of their lives.
COVID-19 has left many caregivers struggling with the emotional pressures of isolation. Nicole remembers a pivotal conversation about the inevitability of change and offers some advice on ways to find some comfort and calm in these difficult times.
The pandemic has changed the daily lives of everyone. How we work, how we shop, and how we interact with each other are all shifting. Comparing life as it is now with how it used to be can lead to sadness or despair and what's called "ambiguous loss."
My blog is titled Permission to Tell the Truth in an effort of honoring my feelings, not denying them. The actual act of truth telling is challenging. It hurts. Here we’ve established a relationship of trusting support. I’d like your continued permission to be open and real.