Action for Brain Injury Week

7 Days 7 Ways

#7days7ways

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Seven whole days…

Seven new ways of doing it My Way…

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As you may or may not be aware, this week, from Monday 12th May to Sunday 19th May is ‘Action for Brain Injury Week’.

That is 7 days to raise as much awareness about Brain Injuries as possible.

7 days,

one week,

that is all.

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The Encephalitis Society are getting people to post pictures of themselves doing an #unselfie on social media to portray how the brain injury that follows on from Encephalitis is often hidden.

Living with a hidden disability can be frustrating to say the least.

Let’s join together to help raise awareness about what it is like to live with a disability that you cannot see.

Here is mine.

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#unselfie #ABIWeek

Join me and tweet @encephalitis and @lizzy_oldershaw your #unselfie too!!

The Children’s Trust came up with ‘7 days 7 ways’ and on the this Monday want as many people as possible to share this link on social media, trying to make as many people as possible B.R.A.I.N aware!

Behavioural changes are tough on a family
Recovery is often a long-term process
Adult brain injury is different from brain injury in children
Invisible difficulties can be hard for others to understand
No two children respond to a brain injury in the same way

 Headway are holding art exhibitions, coffee mornings and even a ‘hats for headway’ day on Friday…

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Child Brain Injury Trust are launching an innovative art exhibition, the pictures have been painted by young people with an ABI…

The Eden Dora Trust will be helping to raise awareness through twitter and other social media platforms…

These are all great ways to raise awareness BUT I want to take this week to go on my own personal journey, and hopefully raise awareness about brain injuries in the process.

I am currently on an actual journey; I am on the train travelling back from the Encephalitis Retreat in Wales.

What a weekend.

Relaxing, emotional and inspirational.

And beautiful…just check out this view.

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We got to wake up to this EVERY morning!

Imagine if you had to live your life each day worrying about what everyone else was thinking about you and having to keep in all your emotions just so you don’t upset people.

Then imagine going somewhere where everyone you meet ‘gets you’.

That is what the Encephalitis Retreat was for me.

I could say “you know when…?”

And a complete stranger (well they are no longer strangers actually!) would give you ‘that look’ and burst out with “YES, I COMPLETELY understand”.

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And something that all of us brain injured lot agreed with was this.

Encephalitis is (insert bad word here).

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I have often thought of Encephalitis as some sort of death.

A part of me died in that hospital bed.

A part of me is gone forever.

The life I thought I was going to live has gone forever.

RIP Me.

 

As per normal, I tend to open my laptop at times like this and look for some sort of divine intervention.

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Perhaps I have been coming at this from the wrong direction. If I really want to ‘get over’ having a brain injury and come to terms with what has happened maybe I need to look at how people deal with death.

So I type ‘dealing with bereavement’ into Google and what do I find?

7 stages of grief.

Perfect then.

7 Days

7 Ways

7 Stages

It appears that in any loss or bereavement, a person typically goes through seven stages of grief.

  1. Shock and Disbelief
  2. Denial
  3. Anger
  4. Bargaining
  5. Guilt
  6. Depresseion
  7. Acceptance

Therefore, each day for the following week, I will try to link each stage to my own recovery and through this I will hopefully learn more about the recovery process and help to raise awareness in #ABIWeek

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However, after a long, emotional roller coaster of a weekend I think I may have to start on Tuesday and put stages 1 & 2 together…

It also does’t help that my fatigue has set in like a brick to the face.

So, tomorrow I will tell you all about shock, disbelief and denial. And how it has played a role in my recovery.

In the meantime, get sharing and tweeting #unselfie and #ABIWeek

Lets join together this Action For Brain Injury Week and get people talking…

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