In July 2009, I was struck by an oncoming car... a driver who did not have the right of way and ran a red light going 60 mph. From that accident, I received a Tramautic Brain Injury, (or TBI) along with a sub-conjunctival hemorrhage in my right eye, multiple facial lacerations and torn ligaments in my neck and back because my airbags did not deploy (I was still recovering from a concussion and sprained neck from 3 months prior due to a bad snowboarding fall). In conjunction with that Brain Injury, I received another TBI in December 2011, leaving me in seriously bad shape. Since then, I have been struggling and fighting my way through some unbelievable hardships & health issues (emotionally, physically and mentally) for the past few years of my life. Post-Brain Injury, I now suffer from short term memory loss (JUST KEEP SWIMMING xD ), Panic Disorder, along with PTSD, mild Aphasia when anxiety is high which affects my ability to articulate or write what I want/am trying to say, chronic Migraines, extreme tension headaches, chronic neck and back pain, along with other disabilities I hope to be able to vlog about one day. Through working with neuropsychologists and neurorehabilitation specialists, I have been able to somewhat "get back on my feet" although every day is a struggle. I am going to be participating in a school for brain injury rehabilitation in Fall 2017.
TBI/ABI is the "invisible disability". While I appreciate the encouraging, "But you look fine!" type of comments, it is painful to know most people who do not know me well unknowingly withhold often much-needed empathy while engaging with me, (i.e. when I struggle to find a word or stutter people may attribute this to other things instead of unfortunate life circumstances). Please remember that you do not have to be physically disfigured to have disabilities. According to doctors, brain injury recovery is measured in YEARS, not months and sadly is mostly still not covered by health insurance in America. Since I more recently started gaming again (post-head injuries so around 2015), I have seen an tremendous increase in my reflexes, hand-eye coordination, visuospatial skills, muscle memory, response time, and overall mood (thanks to the love & support of the Twitch and Destiny community). These improvements show me that my brain is making a lot of progress! What may look like baby steps to most, are huge leaps for me in terms of TBI/ABI & PTSD recovery! YOU GUYS ARE MY SUPPORT GROUP! Gaming, art and streaming = therapy for me, as silly as that may sound to some. I'm unbelievably proud to be doing what I'm doing on Twitch and even more thankful for the amazing friends I have met through streaming <3
I am eternally grateful to all that watch, follow, sub and support the channel, as I consider this to be the biggest part in my recovery to date. Gaming & streaming also helps keep routine in my life, which is very important during brain injury recovery, and this (hopefully temporary) time until some of the health problems lessen in severity. Twitch, gaming, and this community have truly been, and continue to be, a God-send. Some days are still worse than others, of course, as I am still healing, and I know this is kind of heavy, but I don't care- this is my journey and I want to share it in hopes of spreading awareness and instilling faith in others. Twitch is the first social media platform I've found where I have been able to be open about my injuries, disabilities, and recovery, so thank you from the bottom of my heart for taking the time to read this.
"THIS TOO SHALL PASS"
My twitch page can be found here