It started out as any other day, however we were completley unaware that it would be the beging of a new Journey.
Jan 24th was a Saturday, Rob had been working 6 days a week 12 hr shifts lately as Command Security was short handed as usual, Rob had worked Graveyard and had gotten home at about 8a.m. that morning, he had until Sunday night at 7p.m. off so we decided after he slept for a few hours that we would go see Dan for the day, Rob slept until about 11a.m. and then got up and we took off, I had grabbed my camera bag as well because we’d been having some great weather for it being January, warm in the high 50’s, just wearing hoodies during the day.
We met up with Dan at a friend of his and we all hung out for the day, having a good time, Rob worked on our Bronco for a bit and I left to go prowl this end of the county to see what i might find that sparked my creativity.
I had just stopped for some lunch at 3:35p.m. when Dan called and said Rob had had a bad motorcycle accident and is on his way to Willamette Falls Hospital, and it didn’t look good.
I made it to Willamette Falls Hospital right after Dan had gotten there with Rob, The Dr’s at Willamette Falls weren’t able to treat him in the way he needed as they were only a small rural hospital and not equipped to treat Trauma cases so they transferred Rob to Emmanuel Hospital and Trauma Center, one of only 2 trauma centers in Oregon.
Once Rob arrived at Emmanuel Hospital the trauma team immediatley took him into surgery to reconstruct his face and any other injuries that showed up on scans.
Rob spent 5 days on the trauma floor and not once did a social worker come to tell us anything about Traumatic Brain Injuries, what to expect, what to look for, or to offer us any type of support groups or any resources.
Everything we know, any information we’ve gotten, and all support we’ve received has been due to my due dillegance and spending lots of time googling and asking friends for info and finally searching Facebook for TBI groups for us wives.
I started noticing little things around June or July of 2015, just Rob not being himself, avoiding things, not wanting to go and do things that we always have done in the past, His personality changed, not dramatically but he was no longer adventurous, couldn’t get him to go with me on my photo adventures when that is something we use to do together always.
He started having issues with Panic attacks and anxiety, from what I had read in my TBI Wifes group, Panic attacks and anxiety are normal repercussions of a brain injury, Depression and Suicidal thoughts are also part of the TBI.
Amazingly Rob was able to return to work 3 months after his accident, however the constant 60 plus hours, no vacation time and always on the go for work took a toll on Rob and he ended up in a Mental Health facility June of 2017. it was then that Rob’s Dr told him he cannot return to work, that his medical issues are far to severe to ever return to work, since then we have filed for SSDI and he is officially “Retired”. We are now just waiting on a hearing with Social Security, he has already been denied twice.
Now my days consist of keeping things calm for Rob, keeping track of his medical appointments and paperwork for Food stamps and Medical, being there to help him through his attacks.
He’s had a few new issues come up in the last year, Aphasia for one, seizures and tremors for another, he has been diagnosed with non specific chronic pain, non epiliptic seizures and put on medication, for now things are under control.
Once Spring arrives Rob and I plan on getting back into hiking and also my photography, I have been looking for new places to hike in order to make it interesting, however we are going to hike a few the Columbia River Gorge trails as well, many of the trails are re-opened now and it will be interesting to see the rebirth of trees, flowers and wtc after the Eagle Creek fire.
We will also be going down to the coast off and on as well, and I do want to go back to Ecola State Park again, I also want to perhaps go down to Florance and check out Heceta Head and a few places along the way.
It appears as though we are in for a few days of some good weather, and I recently learned about a place to hike nearby so I might just get out this weekend and take the camera on a Pre-Spring hike, we shall see if I can manage to escape from home even for just a couple of hours.
I hope this blog finds all my followers well, and I do plan on starting regular Weekend (Saturday or Sunday) Postings again now that I am going to be getting out. It appears as though we won’t be getting any winter weather here in the Valley this year, so that means we can start hiking some of the lower elevation trails earlier, WooHoo that means a longer hiking season.
Have a wonderful rest of your week.