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Help Me Remember: A podcast episode on brain injury by Terrible, Thanks for Asking (TTFA)

I’ve only just discovered Terrible, Thanks for Asking and I’m binge listening to all of them, something you may not know about me? I never read a full synopsis of something or watch a full film trailer. Why? Because they always give too much away and I enjoy the surprise and often, the shock factor. I’m not reading a single world of these podcast episodes synopsis’, I just click play because I feel this is how they should be listened to, they deserve your shock factor. This podcast is such a raw, unfiltered look into peoples lives and just like real life you don’t get a synopsis for someone or their situation… It can hit you out of the blue sometimes, which is certainly what happened to me with this episode and it certainly happens to those people who aren’t expecting to hear “I have a brain injury”.

Episode #5: Help Me Remember

“What did you have for breakfast this morning?”

A tradition in public radio and how this episode began, a few people answer. Including Nora, the creator of the podcast (who, by the way pronounces Nutella so cutely) and then someone asks “Dawn, how about you. What did you have for breakfast?” Dawn answers with “I don’t remember, which is common”. Nora goes on to talk about how she’s just has a baby so if she were to have the same answer as Dawn everyone would just laugh and say “Mom brain” a few more words are spoken and I can’t stop thinking ‘this is about brain injury isn’t it…‘. Yes… Yes it is. Now, I was on a train at this time after a long frustrating day and I really wasn’t in the mood for brain things, but I’ve made a commitment and was interested to see how this podcast episode would continue. I sigh and lean back, placing my head comfortably on an uncomfortable seat. Come at me brain injury, come at me…

I’m proud of Nora and how this episode was done, it was such an excellent setup. It wasn’t just Dawn that was being interviewed, it was her family and they were all in the same room being completely open with one another. This is such a great way to raise brain injury awareness because it focuses on the impact that living with a brain injury has on everyone a brain injured person interacts with.

‘Today will be in her calendar but not her brain’

I’m glad I listened, I’m glad I was holding my tears back on the train, I’m glad that once I was home and had finished listening I cried. I cried for Dawn, I cried for her family and I cried for me; I cried for my future, I cried for my future children and I cried because… What do my loved ones and friends really think of me and my brain injury?

I’ve kept this post short, trust me I could write so much about this episode but I want to keep some of it secret. I want you who’s reading this to experience the shock factor. Sometimes life needs a shock factor, it gets attention, it makes you think and most of all? It sticks with you, this episode is with me always: Every time I write something down that someone without a brain injury wouldn’t have to write, every time I think about who I used to be, every time I get lost easily, every time I have to tell Stephen “a place for everything and everything in its place”, every time I burden someone because of my injury, every time the fear of having another brain injury takes a hold of me, every time I need help, every time someone says “you don’t look like anything’s wrong with you” or every time someone insinuates that I want attention, every time I have to sit at a quiet table when I go out, every time I try to accept who I am now, every time I panic over something so little, every time I get angry for no reason at all, every time I’m overwhelmed, every time I cry because it all gets too much (emotional lability) and every time things that weren’t mentioned in this episode happen. Basically… there’s a lot of ‘every time’ in my life now.

Image result for ttfa help me remember

Terrible Thanks For Asking: You know how every day someone asks “how are you?” And even if you’re totally dying inside, you just say “fine,” so everyone can go about their day? This show is the opposite of that. Hosted by author It’s Okay to Laugh (Crying Is Cool Too) and notable widow (her words) Nora McInerny, this is a funny/sad/uncomfortable podcast about talking honestly about our pain, our awkwardness, and our humanness, which is not an actual word.’

Some useful posts that relate to this podcast

How to look after yourself after a brain injury

Daily struggles of life after a brain injury: Advice given

Advice on meeting new people after a brain injury

Would you like to share how your brain injury happened? You can do so here

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