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In 1994, I endured 2 gunshots from a handgun within a foot of my face to the right side of my forehead just at the hairline and a few inches above. One bullet ricocheted into the ceiling and the other penetrated my skull, traveled along the top, down the back and came to rest in the rear of my skull on the right side of my head. As a result, I was paralyzed on the left side. I regained full use of my arm and down to my hip. My left leg is partially paralyzed - essentially 100 percent below the knee and the left hamstring at least 90 percent. My thigh is strong enough to support me, but uncoordinated. I have diminished sensory perception throughout my left leg. I also suffer from non epileptic focal seizures that are controlled by Depakote and other TBI related symptoms. What experience does anyone have with changes over time that they think may be related to their traumatic brain injury? Does anyone continue to gain physical functionality through exercise and/or physical therapy? Does anyone experience increased emotional responses and find it difficult to control their emotions? I tend to try and control how much I let myself feel due to fear of becoming inappropriately, sad, angry, happy, etc. I get frustrated with what I perceive to be the lack of understanding from society in general to the difficulties that people with any disability deal with on a 24x7 basis. Does anyone experience side effects from seizure medication? I believe Depakote has made it much more difficult for me to maintain my weight as well as affect energy levels. It takes me a lot longer to do everyday tasks due to my physical limitations and sometimes also the requirement that I need to be careful, concentrate and singularly focused on simple tasks even such as walking. This can affect my efficiency in everyday life from normal tasks, recreation and work. When others with any limitations from a TBI have similar difficulties, do they have trouble relaying these to people, or if they do, experience a lack of understanding? How often do people encounter a lack of accommodations in public? Work, shopping, recreation, parking, etc. I was and continue to be lucky to have supportive family and friends as I recovered and live with my TBI. How has others' experience been related to support from family and friends? How have relationships changed as a result of your TBI? I lost touch with many friends after my TBI and others stepped up and became closer to me.

    • PinballGuy


      Hey, sorry it took so long to reply. Lack of follow through seems to be a lingering effect of my injury, over committing myself and lack of organization at times, lol. I am doing better with the weight changes and have kept off 50+ pounds thru diet and exercise. I'd like to figure out a way to help others who have gained weight from these types of meds and brain injuries as well as overall well getting healthier through a healthy lifestyle, etc. That's just my being over ambitious again, but I know people need help and encouragement. Thanks again for the comments. I will try to check back more regularly.

    • NickGobes75


      I am so sorry to hear about what you went/are going through. I cannot imagine. I can only try to help by telling you what I’ve experienced and give you general advice but I hope it helps even a little. I only had a mild-moderate TBI from martial arts. But I have noticed when I’m talking I tend to forget words right in the middle of a sentence. I also suffer from migraines that can last weeks (right after the TBI I had a constant migraine for 3 months plus neurological slowing-it felt like I was drunk). As i healed, and this happened for a good year to two years afterwards, if I hit my head on something like the wall or anything really, it would trigger a migraine. My TBI was in 2016 and I’d say by 2018 I was back to “normal” besides migraines. Before, I couldn’t sit down too hard or I’d jostle my head and re-concuss myself. As for the emotions, I have bipolar, but the concussion made my emotions CRAZY. I was hyper sensitive to sound, light, so many things in my environment and if something set off a migraine, I would immediately get really pissy. That is not normal, not even for bipolar. At the time I wasn’t medicated correctly, so I was a little goofy anyways but the concussion really made me emotionally labile. Bc of the bipolar, I have been on numerous anti-epileptics like depakote, topiramate, trileptal, etc. there are some interesting side effects to them. Some of that is weight changes, dizziness, sleepiness. But for the most part the side effects tend to wear off after the first couple of weeks. The weight changes can linger, though, unfortunately, depending. As for explaining disabilities/difficulties from injuries to able-bodied people, that can be a real challenge sometimes because they’ve never experienced what you are going through. Hopefully, if they are empathetic, they can at least be kind and try to understand. Then you have the others who don’t try. I don’t waste my time with them. There are a lot of a lack of accommodations in public and that is beyond not right. I’m sorry you have to deal with that. It helps to have a disabled parking placard/license plate, for me at least. I understand that is only one part of much more that you and others may need and I wish there was more I could do. I have been very lucky to have support from family and friends. I’m so glad you have had support as well!!! The important people stayed with me and I lost the people who didn’t deserve to be in my life anymore after my TBI. I hope that answered some of your questions! Feel free to message me whenever!

☝ This content is generated by our users and it is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your physician before making any medical decision

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