This is my story.
Like most people, I didn’t know much about Traumatic Brain Injury, I didn’t even know they are called TBI for short. The year was 2010 and life was about to surprise me with one.
I was taking my first sailing lesson, full of hope and confidence with only the normal level of trepidation, but the brightness of that fateful day changed as a massive storm came on and literally turned my world upside down.
Imagine my life 8 years ago as I had a successful healing arts practice working with respected medical professionals in an Integrative Medicine Clinic.
Within the span of a few short hours my abilities were changed - I could barely open my eyes, to say nothing of getting up and off my couch.
I went from having my life well on-track to achieve satisfying long-term goals, to having no idea what my goals could even be.
I went from being excited about my future to feeling hopeless, helpless, and filled with despair.
If you live with a TBI, you know exactly what I’m talking about.
Getting in the standard basic of three meals a day, became my new benchmark for a successful, good day.
How could I go on? What did I do?
I lived inside the questions everyone with a brain injury lives in… I quickly realized that to ask the question of “Why did this happen to me?” only led me to feeling more hopeless and more identified with being a victim. But, when I asked myself questions that started with the proposition of “How?”, then I felt more empowered.
“How do I get my brain function back?”
“How can I create a life worth living with what I have left?”
“How do I accept this?”
As a Board Certified Hypnotherapist, I had already in my life helped hundreds of people heal physical, emotional, and mental challenges. As a healer using the principles of neuroplasticity, I would help people re-wire their brains everyday. I knew the brain was changeable. I had seen many miraculous transformations occur.
So, when my doctors told me I would never heal, I refused to believe that.
I chose to believe that anything is possible, and that if anyone was equipped to do this, I was. Everything in my life had led me to this.
My brain injury has put everything I know to the ultimate test; it challenges every human realm- physical, mental, spiritual, and emotional.
My recovery journey has not been easy. Honestly, it has been incredibly hard. I believe it is harder than anyone who has not experienced a brain injury could even imagine.
In my 20’s, I had intentionally exercised my “courage muscles” to build more strength and resilience. If I was afraid of something, I did that. I worked with at-risk youth in the most crime ridden parts of the country. I backpacked in Alaska for six months. I found the largest concentration of grizzly bears in the world, and learned to stalk grizzlies. (OK, yes, that was a bit crazy- but I did it!) I climbed mountains in Yosemite. I gave birth to two children at home. I helped nearly 50 babies come into the world. I even succeeded in tackling everyone’s biggest fear, public speaking.
None of those challenges came close to the terror of acquiring a brain injury.
I suddenly was unable to tolerate any light or any motion.
I spent many months unable to open my eyes or move my head.
My own vision made me so nauseas and delirious, I wished for blindness.
I was left to navigate the world while unable to read, unable to drive, unable walk very far or take a bus. I was easily utterly confused to the point of being unable to tell where my body was in space.
How then was I to take care of myself ... and my child?
I was told this would never get better. Now, I can tell you, that produces a constant sense of sheer terror within the already terrifying sensory experience.
As a hypnotherapist, I had been really good at helping people heal anxiety and trauma. Now I was personally living with daily trauma and anxiety at a level I would describe as through the roof.
I struggled to find information, medical and legal help that understood traumatic brain injury. It was a frustrating, overwhelming, and incredibly difficult journey filled with a lot of blanks, questions with no answers. To the medical system, I was basically one big dead end going nowhere.
My problem was that I looked too good.
Despite my scrambled brain, I knew inside there was some divine purpose in all this. I trusted that there was ultimately a good purpose for everything, even though I couldn’t see it at the time.
Deep down, I knew that I would figure this out and help others going through this.
From my professional work before my injury, I was fairly well-connected in the fields of complementary medicine. I started scouring my connections and seeking out healers across countless disciplines.
I was learning so much, I began recording my journey, imagining that it might help the other 2.8 million people a year coming along just behind me on this road of brain injury recovery. To keep up with my personal research, I started a blog, I started writing a book, and I started creating videos on YouTube.
It took me six years to unscramble my visual processing enough to even begin to get these out to the world.
And now, after all the years of unscrambling, I’ve become like the mini-Oprah of the TBI community. I was and still am that someone who goes around to interview the experts so I can bring their expertise out to all of us publicly. I am that someone who compiles all the useful information and shares it openly on my website so we can all have equal access to the tools we need to try. I am that someone who leads by example with my own hard-earned wisdom of experience.
Let me be clear here, I am not a doctor, I am not a nurse. I am not considered a medical professional in any way shape or form offer clinical medical advice.
What I am is a survivor of a Traumatic Brain Injury… And a Board Certified Hypnotherapist and Life Transformation Coach.
I am here able and willing to guide you, coach you, and lovingly support you on your journey.
I am here with so many tools in my toolbox to help you find greater acceptance, peace, and forgiveness.
Most of all, I am your biggest cheerleader, I am your friend in wellness, and I am super grateful you’re here!
I invite you to connect with me -
watch my videos, send me an email, sign up for my newsletter updates
- what I learn, I want you to learn from, too.