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Brain Injury Survivor Stories

Friday, March 20, 2009

Chris Thornhill

A Thankful Young man

My name is Chris Thornhill and I am 20 years old. When I was 18, three months after I graduated from high school with a 4.0 GPA, I got a brain booboo. I was driving to fast and took out a light post. I was in a coma for 10 days and in the hospital for 2 months. I had a severe brain injury, I broke my right arm, four right ribs, collar bone, leg, and fractured my pelvis. I also had severe lung contusions. When I came out of a coma, I couldn't talk or anything, I just laid in bed. That was in September of 2007. I have been going to therapy for a long time. Now I can walk and talk and do most things normally. My biggest struggle is my memory, my memory, and worst of all, my memory. I am currently enrolled in my first online college course, hopefully I survive! My hope and goals for the future are to be completely healed, to drive again, to be a professional paintball player, and to meet St Nick. I thank God everyday that I am still alive, and I thank my family for helping me.

My Brother

My name is Summer and I am 13 years old. I have a big loving family, and my brother has a brain injury. His name is Chris and when he was 18 he was speeding in his car and lost control. It happened when I was asleep. I woke up to the sound of my grandpa’s voice. He told me what had happened and that both my parents were at the hospital with him. I went in my room and cried. My grandma came in and tried to comfort me. After awhile my mom stayed home at night while my dad was at the hospital. My mom stayed at the hospital during the days, and sometimes she would let me go with her. It made me happy that I could see him. Every time he went to therapy he improved. I can’t tell you what it felt like to see him finally talking and walking. Even though he didn’t like therapy one bit, I am thankful for it. That was in 2007, but now in 2009, he is home and can do everything. I play games with him and tell him jokes because I love to see him laugh after all he has been through. He still has a couple things to improve on, but he is working on them. The thing that I like about my brother most is that when he laughs, he brings smiles to everyone. Even though he and I can’t do things we used to do together, we still have fun and laugh together all the time. 

A Mother’s Child

My name is Debbie Thornhill. When my son Chris was 18, he was in a life threatening car accident. He suffered a severe brain injury, and several other injuries. When my son came home from the hospital he had to learn to do everything all over again; from eating, to daily living skills, to walking and talking. It was like having a combative, hallucinating, 100+ pound infant that couldn't sleep!! It was heartbreaking to see my son in this condition and to not be able to fix it all for him. My husband and I have five children and this is the hardest thing we have ever gone through. That being said, it has also been the most inspiring thing. To watch my son struggle, yet strive to do better, stumble yet relearn how to stand strong, have weak moments yet bring all his strength to the surface has changed our lives in so many ways. It has been 1 ½ years. He is still in therapy and still improves each day. He recently started his first online college course that teaches him how to use a PDA (handheld personal computer/cell phone) to help him remember his daily schedule, appointments etc. This experience has also been the most touching thing, as members of our family gave with all of their hearts and they, along with friends and even strangers, prayed with all of their faith. They made it all so much more bearable during the times I though I couldn't bear another moment. But, most of all, it has given me a strong relationship with God, who has seen me through my darkest times, and held me together when I thought I would crumble to pieces. Of course I wish my son did not have to go through anything so severe and I am so thankful to have him with us. He has taught me a lot about life, and about myself. He is still severally struggling with his memory, but with God’s grace, we are hoping this will improve over time. In good conscience, I cannot end this without saying, if you suspect at all that your child may not be driving as safe and careful as possible, TAKE THE KEYS, no matter what!! Please. Chris was a very recent 4.0 GPA high school graduate, responsibly working a summer job, did not use drugs or drink and had never been in any kind of serious trouble. Thank God nobody else was hurt in the accident. Chris was street racing.

Author: Lisa Moss

Categories: Brain Injury BiosNumber of views: 6599

Tags: Brain Injury

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