Brain Injury Awareness Month, recognized each March, provides an important opportunity to bring attention to the prevention of traumatic brain injury (TBI) and to promote strategies to improve the quality of life for persons living with TBI and their families.
Claudia N., a Grandview parent and member of our Family Advisory Council (FAC), tells her son Reid’s story:
“Brain injury is invisible and often misunderstood. The scars may not be obvious, but they are there. They show up in the way you move, talk, and process information. My son acquired a traumatic brain injury (TBI) after a rare complication of brain inflammation during influenza.
He was a rep-athlete in hockey, basketball, soccer and baseball. The more contact he had in sports, the better. Now he can no longer have contact. This was his identity. He had to re-learn everything, from riding a bike, walking, and running to tying his shoelaces.
Having to answer the question, “why doesn’t my brain or body work like it used to?” daily is heartbreaking.
Grandview Kids showed me there is hope after a TBI, but it begins when it is taken seriously by others. Instead of hockey, they introduced him to golf. Instead of tackle football, they are teaching how to swim. He was resistant at first but is now secretly loving it. They showed him that there are different directions that can just be as fulfilling. When he wanted to give up, they simply wouldn’t let him.
As his mom, seeing him feeling so lost every day is excruciating, and I wish I could trade places with him. Disabilities come in all shapes and sizes and visibilities. Yes, this injury is invisible, but the impact and effects are as lifelong as visible ones.
The good news is that with the right support and accommodations, there is light at the end of the tunnel. Next time you meet someone with a TBI, just know how much more there is behind those sweet eyes looking back at you.”
Check out more Grandview Kids articles
- Acknowledging holidays in December and January
- International Volunteer Day – December 5
- International Day for People with Disabilities – December 3
- Ontario Shores and Abilities Centre Announce Expansion of Joint Research Ethics Board, Welcoming Grandview Kids
- National Child Day – November 20