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LETTER: There’s help for local brain injury survivors

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Dear Editor:

Where can I get help for my concussion? People ask this question even after they see many doctors and physiotherapists. Specialists have book learning but, can they really know how you are feeling? Those with a brain injury need to talk to people who are going through the same thing or have recovered.

Members of the local Brain Injury support group understand the strange things you are experiencing and can share some coping strategies that helped them. Something that worked for them may not even be found in a book or doctor’s office.

The first couple of years after my injury, I spent hiding in my apartment because I had trouble following a conversation with more than one person. I felt dumb because I had lost the ability to follow simple instructions or talk on the phone. Covid was almost a blessing because I didn’t have to deal with people.

One day a friend mentioned the Brain Injury Association of Sarnia-Lambton (BIASL) to me. When I phoned Lori, she explained the friendly helpful atmosphere of the meetings. I decided to give it a try. Due to my short attention span, I only stayed for 10 minutes the first few times but now I’m one of the last to leave. This is a comforting and confidential place to talk. We share our journey and help each other with ideas and strategies. There is no charge although the help is priceless.

Brain injuries often have no obvious outward scars. People who have never gone through this trauma don’t understand the blurred vision, extreme fatigue, brain fog, neck pain, mood disturbances, poor concentration, depression and the like that can come on out of the blue. After a time and without outward scars well-meaning friends think you are healed. BIASL members know the scars are invisible.

BIASL members usually meet at the VON Building on London Line every Tues and Thurs. at 1:00 pm. Phone in advance, because sometimes the meeting place can be changed.

For more, visit https://sarniabiasl.ca/.

Val Conway
Brain Injury Survivor

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