Several years ago I was able to accomplish some things not even I thought possible: I graduated from high school, got a job, even moved out of state but I've seen some real hard days since. They've included things like new diagnoses and more than one admission to the psych ward. For me and other TBI patients, the truth is no one can really see the pain we're in. Only we know. We deal with a tremendous amount of self-doubt and anxiety. Most days it's a fight for me to believe I'm not crazy.
During my recovery process, I came across a famous fly-fishing quote that reads:
"The charm of fishing is that it is the pursuit of what is elusive, but attainable.
A perpetual series of occasions for hope."
For some, perpetual occasions for hope may sound nice but not necessary. For me, they are my oxygen. So, on the river, I breathe.
Watch Joey's Story:
I know I'm not the only one that had that feeling when they got out of the Children's Institute.
You don't have to pray that you don't want to wake up tomorrow. Your life's not over; it's just saying you've got to live it in a new way.
In the darkest, most chaotic time in my life when I thought it was the end of me, fly fishing brought me hope. And I want to bring that hope to others.
In May 2018, Joey graduated guide school. Currently, Joey is working at a fly shop and apprenticing as a guide in Idaho. He wants to one day open a lodge for other TBI patients to experience the hope of fly fishing.