Kathie's TBI, Epilepsy, and Physical Assault Story
In 1988 I was assaulted by a man who spent two weekends in jail for bashing my head so hard he caused me to undergo years of anguish as I coped with a head injury. Though it has been 8 years and I have recovered remarkably, my life has changed forever. This is because I live with "chirpies" that are a constant reminder that something is wrong with me. The "chirpies" started a day after the blow to my head. It started as a loud, high pitched noise in my head and I noticed it went with the beat of my heart. I now know that it is in fact the sound of blood gushing through my arteries. If you've ever had an altrasound of the carotid arteries or watch medical programs on T.V. of a person undergoing an ultrasound and heard that "pish, pish, pish" sound - that is what I live with day in and day out. It's scary. And though I have not dropped dead yet, I still wonder - is something going to snap in my brain? If I have a child, will it be too much pressure on my head? I guess for me, now that I am no longer undergoing the constant EEGs, meds for epilespsy, Scans etc., the hardest part is accepting how certain "friends" have made me feel when I have spoken about my injury. The silence, the scepticism that you can see in their face. They did not know me before the injury - I look fine - so I must be using it as an excuse, a cop-out. To those people, I can only say "educate yourselves!". I cannot remain a friend with someone who cannot accept me for who I am. I have learned to live with this injury as best as I can. I am thankful for having recovered so well and have learned a great deal about people along the way. If I could turn back the clock to that day, I would. But many important people have come into my life because of the injury and who really knows what would have been "if only?" Life could have been very different...it could have been worse.