A CRITICALLY INJURED WOMAN, OVERCOMING THE ODDS IS NOW A PUBLISHED AUTHOR AND ASPIRING MOVIE FILM PRODUCER
If I can do it, so can you. Do not give up, no matter what!!!
Before I suffered a severe brain injury in August of 1993, I never thought that I would ever return to figure skating, become an author, and now an aspiring movie film producer. It seemed that the odds were just too highly stacked against me as my chances of survival were slim. Traumatic Brain Injury in the early 90’s was not an advanced topic in the medical field. I was given narcotic pain medication and basically told “Have a nice life.” I was left to fend for myself while trying to figure out why I couldn’t remember things, or why I would run out of the grocery store because I felt the walls closing in on me. Due to the extent of the injury I suffered, my life was ripped to shreds and no one could explain why. I could no longer feel my feet, hands or left leg. The headaches became so bad I contemplated suicide. The afternoon I actually put my right leg over the top of my 3rd story balcony was to end the pain I was in once and for all, till the phone rang. A friend on the other end told me, “Whatever you are about to do, don’t. God told me to tell you it will get better.” This reaffirmed and strengthened my belief in God, as I hope it does for others as well.
Things got better, but it took several years for me to get the help I needed in understanding my injury. It wasn’t until our American soldiers came back with severe head injuries and the results of those injuries, that TBI become well known. But, I at least stopped feeling so alone. I began to read the stories of our returned troops and at times I was like, “Wow! That sounds just like me.” I finally found out how severe my head injury really was. It was then that I took my findings to a doctor who told me, “Do you realize how close to death you came?” I responded, “How close?” He looked at me and with hand gestures he stated, “Your neck was about ¼ inch from snapping.” I spent several years in Chiropractic therapy and eventually weaned myself off the pain medication, but something had to be done about the chronic pain I was living in.
I took my family to the ice rink for my oldest son’s birthday party. Out on the ice, I noticed something. I was not in pain, or rather I could not feel the pain due to the cold. That birthday party was over nineteen years ago and I have not stopped skating since. I became a Figure Skating Coach. I am also working on passing Adult Tests and soon I plan to compete. Who back then would have thought that after a future which could have found me paralyzed, I was able to make a better future for myself instead. Though it was not easy, I knew in my heart that I had to endure and at times force myself to not quit. I can hardly believe I am the same woman who once had to crawl on the floor because I was too weak to stand; or who couldn’t remember where she was; or felt like a hammer was beating her skull 24 hours a day. Let me tell you, God is good.
However, there was still the issue of me having a career. I could no longer work a normal 9-5 job. Skating was only a few days a week and I had to do something constructive. My love for history sent me back to Gettysburg almost once or twice a week. While researching for a book I was writing, I fell down Big Round Top in the snow and the story of Summer Ray unfolded. The 5 volume series is now complete and available on amazon.com. I am currently working on the 6th volume. Yet, it doesn’t stop there. We are now in the pre-production phase of our first full length feature film series which is titled the same as the book series.
So you see, if God can turn such a devastating injury around for my good, He can do the same for you as well. I am not saying it wasn’t without difficulty. There were days of excruciating suffering. Yet I am still here and things have gotten better. I had to get passed my pity parties and learn to love myself with my disabilities. The OCD and the PTSD still haunt me. Although, I still struggle on a daily basis to live with the new me, I still do my best to make the best of the new me. Who would have thought, at the brink of what could have been the end of my life and after seriously contemplating suicide, I am now writing this for all eyes to see. Please don’t give up. I believe in you and I know God does too. Through faith, God can and will make a way where there is none!
God Bless You,