Windsor & I Play “Peter Pan” ~ I Get Better!

11 04 2011

As you are aware I have a traumatic brain injury (TBI).  At the end of January (2011) I experienced a life-threatening setback due to a satellite dish installation at our neighbors’ house that went awry, causing a high amount of EMFs (electro-magnetic fields) into our house that retraumatized my body/brain.  Hence, I was unable to update my blog with the “Amazing Busies” that happened prior to the setback.  My brain/body is still traumatized from the setback, but I am making progress, ESPECIALLY this week!  (When I’m able to in another post, one day I will write about the cause of it and hope to “educate” people in regards to EMFs and electro-sensitivity.  For now, I’m still too traumatized by all the events to express them.)

One of the results from the trauma to my brain in January is that I struggle with where I am and who people are, even though they typically are part of my normal routine/patterns in life.  For example, somedays I know who my brothers are, somedays I don’t.  Somedays I’m not sure who my parents are, but they’re here to help me get through it.  I’ll ask, “What’s this?”  Someone responds, “It’s a dog.  It’s Windsor.  He helps you.”  I’m lost.  I’m disoriented.   It’s very frightening to me.  I’ve cried and cried at times over this being so frightened not knowing where I am.   I may be in my bedroom and not know it, not know where I am.  I may be paralyzed in the shower, not knowing where I am.  This is new for me, not something I’ve experienced amidst all the other life-changes since my TBI from 2003.

This new trauma to my brain caused my mobility to digress.  Once again, I’ve been working to drag my legs a few steps, trying to balance, striving to place one foot in front of the other with help from a person and my service dog, Windsor.  That progress is coming along nicely now after 2 months, not stable, but showing constant improvement.   I’ve once again been working to speak whether struggling through stuttering, slurring, or working to make sounds.  Reading, processing the words, grasping sentences, recalling the information has been on my daily therapy list.  In the past week, I’ve remembered how to spell and my fingers are clicking into writing here!  JOY!  I’ve forgotten many of my daily routines, so I’m back to working the basics, not knowing some days how to brush my hair, how to brush MY teeth (but I did remember Windsor’s one day), how to pick out and change clothes, how to cook (I do well making breakfast, but that’s it), working to remember ALL my meds, and more.  Don’t ask me to write my name with a pen.  It won’t happen.  I don’t know how.  So, I’m working to progress once again in many areas.

This working to progress includes my parents and some caregivers walking and walking and walking the neighborhood with me.  I spent a number of weeks stepping just a FEW feet outside the house and then not knowing where I was, where to turn, how to go anywhere.  Last week, my father walked a good part of the lake here with me, working to help me establish “old patterns.”  I’ve walked this lake THOUSANDS and THOUSANDS of times over a 20+ year span.

Two mornings ago, Windsor and I attempted (and I can say HE succeeded!!!) to walk the lake BY OURSELVES (while I wore my new hooded sweatshirt from that helps protect me from EMFs, had LOTS of brain meds in me, and carried emergency numbers/medical info, etc.).  My mom knew I would be on the lake.  I knew she would be praying for me as I worked at this accomplishment.  If I was too long, she would come find me.  I’ve mentally practiced walking the lake for weeks now.  I’ve verbalized how to get around most of the lake.  I was ready!  I needed to do this!

I did REALLY well getting down the first, long major street.  I can visualize Windsor then helping me to turn left and cross the street.  I went up a slight incline….and from there….I was lost.  That is a very scary feeling.  I took a deep breath and while doing so, Windsor began to gently, thru a controlled pull, lead me as if he was a guide dog.  How did he know I was lost?  I followed where he took me and prayed to God to help us be safe. 

 I sang….a version of the Peter Pan song.

“I’m following the leader, the leader, the leader

I’m following the leader, wherever he may go.

I WILL be home this morning, this morning, this morning

I WILL be home this morning, because God tells me so!” 

Right God?  In the Bible there is a verse that says, “God is our refuge and strength, a PRESENT help in trouble.”  (I do not know where it is located.  Due to brain injury issues I’m unable to read my Bible and rely on verses I memorized pre-accident in 2003.)  I know God gave me strength and BOTH Windsor and me help.  I have NO IDEA where Windsor took me.  NOTHING looked familiar for quite some time, but I’ve learned over the past weeks of this setback to trust Windsor.  He’s one smart cookie and I truly believe God has some angels helping him know what to do even when I can’t express to Windsor what I need.

After quite some time of playing “Peter Pan,” I suddenly recognized a palm tree!!!  I was close to the zoo!  That’s what I call the fish pond!  I told my mom we were going to walk around the lake, go to the “zoo,” then around the stores to get home.  My question is, “How in the world did Windsor know to go to the zoo?”  Angels watch over Windsor B. AND me! 

Over these weeks when I’ve been lost, I tell Windsor, “FIND HOME.”  But, I hadn’t said this to him yet.  When we made it to the zoo and watched the colorful and gorgeously created fish, I “reoriented.”   I was then able to mostly find the way to the store.  But, while standing outside the store I got lost again.  “Oh dear Lord, where to?  I don’t recognize anything.  Where am I?  Oh Lord, please help us.”  “Windsor, ‘Find Home.'”

It takes great faith for me to trust a dog to lead me when I can’t lead him, direct him by signaling verbal commands such as, “Left, Right, Back Up, Cars, Safe~Cross Street” nor by signaling non-verbal commands because of my own physical inability.  I still don’t know how Windsor got us home.  The store is a 1/2 mile away.  I thought we were supposed to pass a school on the way home.  I looked for that one “familiar” landmark, listening for children, looking for school projects in windows, but we never passed a school.  I’m not sure how he got me home.  I just followed Windsor, my miracle mobility, medical alert dog.  He’s not a guide dog.  I’ve trained him in some basic guide techniques, but this miraculous ability of his goes beyond what I taught him prior to this setback.  I’m SO THANKFUL for this ability of his right now.  I TRUST HIM!

We believe that as I continue to be faithful with my brain meds, the Brain Protocol, and all the directions I follow since this setback, that this disorientation will decrease and perhaps disappear.  For now, it gives me great compassion and understanding as to what some of my other disabled friends experience with this disassociation and a way to pray not only for myself, but for them also.

To God be the glory!

“Peter Pan” Christy and Miracle Boy, Sir Windsor B. Derby




2 responses

18 04 2011
Barbara Denmark

Wow Christy! What a tremendous, uplifting story! We are so pleased to hear of your improvement. We continue to pray for you daily and to praise God for how He helps you in every situation. Thanks for letting us all know how He is blessing you!
Barb and Tom

22 04 2011

Hi, Christy–I found Youtube videos of you and Windsor when I was watching service dog videos and from there found your blog. I have orthopedic problems and severe pain and am looking at a program/training similar to Windsor’s so that I can get a service dog.

You still move with a lot of grace, as when Windsor alerts you in the one video, and I wonder if you did some dance or ballet pre-injury. You are strong and beautiful, and I’m glad you have recovered as much as you have, though the setbacks must be difficult. I can see Windsor helps you a lot.

I have a blog but have not been writing on it lately because of pain issues. No need to reply if that’s difficult–just much love to you.

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