I was talking with another person recovering from brain injury when she was describing how her shower and home was adapted to meet special needs. She was paralyzed on the right side and could not speak. She knew exactly what was happening around her, but was unable to communicate.
When she finally was able to communicate family denied many things she saw and said. Others surprised with her responses and acknowledged her thoughts were clear and concise and memory precisely correct, albeit her words are jumbled a bit! Not uncommon for all she’s been through.
Who’s right and who’s wrong, and who cares? This is common and adds to the confusion of brain injury. It’s sorting through and making sense of the world around you that’s difficult! Many times it’s not the survivor that is the problem, but they are blamed and become the problem in the eyes of others.
It’s the emotional turmoil that survivors continually go through, as though they don’t have enough to deal with! They are not “Stupid, Lazy or Crazy”!
We were talking about all the adaptive changes in homes. The most significant and helpful were the “guardrails”! I just laughed. “Guardrails?” I repeated Guardrails? Guardrails? Guardrails? She didn’t get it! I was repeating it back slowly so she could process the word.
Finally, I mentioned that guardrails are installed on roadways and highways to prevent cars from going off the road. Handrails are something installed in homes to help people get around or for support when getting out of bathtubs and around toilets. She believed she was saying“handrails.”
After time and thought she realized what I was saying! It’s great when we can laugh at ourselves and the things we do and say. What we say and what we think we are saying could be two totally different things!
Wouldn’t it look goofy to have guardrails around your home? This set off such a visual it became an entire conversation filled with laughter! Who has guardrails inside their home?
Do you think they’d be on the low side? Guardrails are good to sit on! Imagine trying to walk around the house holding on to a guardrail unless you are a young child it probably wouldn’t serve a purpose or enhance one’s health in anyway!
They take up too much room! Are very costly. Most of all they are dangerous heavy metal objects to protect vehicles and not people! Guardrails would certainly be dangerous in a house posing a safety issue. Handrails are a welcome and helpful adaptive devices! We’ll just stick with handrails!