Day 17- Changes
Remember!! The 31 Day TBI Challenge for CHANGE during March, Brain Injury Awareness Month, consists of just two parts:
1.) Please learn something new about TBI every day. We will be posting an article daily on our Facebook and website pages to make it easy for you to learn. Today’s article is below.
2.) Help facilitate CHANGE by partnering with The Arms Forces by assisting us in continuing our efforts for invisibly wounded veterans by collecting your CHANGE daily and at the end of March donating the money to The Arms Forces. (contact information below) Create a jar and label it:
“The Arms Forces CHANGEfor TBI” and put it out where you and others will see it. When someone asks you what it is all about, share with them a bit about what you have learned about TBI. Share stories of the people you will learn about through our posts on Facebook and how their lives have been forever changed by their injuries.
If collecting change every day is not your thing then be a part of the CHANGE by making a donation to The Arms Forces through our website www.thearmsforces.org or by mailing a check to the address below.
Day 17 – Changes
I had a wonderful and enlightening conversation yesterday morning with a Colonel in the Army. I won’t give out too much information so his identity will stay anonymous. Colonel X we will call him, has a very important and huge job in the Army. He is in charge of a department that crosses many states, travels extensively, meets with VIPs almost daily. He is a graduate of West Point Military Academy and attended a major university to get his doctorate.
All of this after a traumatic brain injury during his Army career at a young age. This story of success after TBI is encouraging to brain injury survivors and their families. It shows the extent of recovery that is possible. But, yes there is a but, Colonel X told me something that I have seen in survivors, including myself, but never with someone who has come so far as Colonel X.
Colonel X can’t keep his personal life in order. He has many challenges in his personal life, schedules, emotions and so on. He shared what I am going to tell you next, which just knocked my socks off for several reasons. One, this was the first conversation we have ever had, so he had to have a level of trust with me to share. Two, he found me and The Arms Forces through a business social media site and wants to be very involved with our organization when he soon retires. Third, what he told me goes EXACTLY towards the “why” The Arms Forces organization exists.
Colonel X told me he is concerned, scared, nervous about how his TBI challenges are going to kick in once he retires from the Army. Think about this, let it soak in. This HIGHLY ACCOMPLISHED, HIGHLY EDUCATED, VERY CAPABLE man, not soldier, not Colonel, MAN is concerned about his traumatic brain injury and how it is going to affect his life after the military.
Yet, those with TBI who might not have the financial resources, the educational background, the fantastic resume that Colonel X have are left to fend for themselves after TBI if they appear to be okay. Colonel X could be left to fend for himself, and though it seems that he would be able to do this, if you really understand TBI you know that his life could take a downward spiral and his potential after retirement never realized. CHANGE, we have talked about CHANGE for weeks now. Well this change is not the coins you are collecting for The Arms Forces to help us continue on our mission to help veterans with invisible wounds. This CHANGE is about confusion, insecurities, the inability to adapt easily to new surroundings, new jobs, new people. Change for TBI can be very difficult. The person who is going on in life pretty darn good because nothing has rocked the boat might experience great difficulty when change is introduced to their life. The TBI survivor who does not need The Arms Forces Life Navigation Coach when things are going well, might well need a little support as they go through the changes in their life to help them stay on a path to a quality life. Understanding, mentoring, encouragement and one on one support, so important for a TBI survivor.
This is TBI. If Colonel X is concerned about his future, imagine what other TBI survivors feel.
With open arms,
Founder/President and severe TBI survivor
The Arms Forces
PO Box 981
Maumee, OH 43537