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Unmasking Brain Injury

Michael’s Story

I had a stroke and then I fell and hit my head open. I have pain but I am a tough guy. Now I have to work hard on daily tasks, such as speaking, walking, showering and all other living skills. I love life because I’m alive.

My injury happened when I was living in Okinawa, Japan. The map of Japan on my mask represents the struggle to get back home to my family in Kansas after my injury. The tape across the forehead represents my titanium plate in my head. I compare myself to Robo Cop because of my titanium plate in the my head. The blue hat represents my thinking cap. It helps me think about things and work on my memory. The red X on the head represents brain trauma. The tape on the eyes represents my impaired eye sight. I am blind on the left sides of both eyes. The left side is shaded gray to represent my left side neglect. My left side hurts and cannot do as much as my right side. The megaphone out of the mouth represents my difficulty with speaking to other people. I have to make my voice louder and work really hard for people to understand me. The KU symbol, airplane, and sailboat are all things I like to do. My life is different now that I cannot do the things I love and used to do.