Here we go again. Several seasons have passed and we are now approaching summer. AGAIN! Time does fly quickly when your daily life is on a schedule. Several issues I want to share with everyone regarding the foundation and of course Mike’s progress.
First I would like to give a little information on our 6th annual fundraiser “Transition of Minds” held in March. Even though attendance was down a little from last year we are proud to say we grossed almost $30,000.00. The event was filled with a room full of generous, compassionate, and giving hearts. That evening is so hard for me since I’m wanting to thank everyone personally and help the committee members and volunteers to make the evening a successful one.
Each year we try to enhance our mission of the foundation at the event. Educating, being one of them. So this year we had the opportunity to have Dr. George Michalopoulos of Illinois Neuro & Physical Rehabilitation as our speaker. Dr. George is a Functional Neurologist who educated the audience on what Functional Neurology is and the seriousness of concussions. Which many people don’t look at a concussion as a brain injury. But it is! As it was stated to us that Mike suffered a “GARGANTUAN CONCUSSION”. And we know how much that has changed Mike’s life. If we can continue to bring more awareness and educate individuals regarding brain injuries, our mission will became a success.
I also want to share that this year Regina Dominican High School for girls in Wilmette held two fundraisers this year for our foundation. First was a Walk-A-Thon then a Dance Marathon. So happy to say that they donated $6000.00 to our foundation. We are truly grateful to all that worked so hard and to those who were so generous to help us “Pay It Forward” to TBI individuals.
Each year we struggle to raise money to help TBI families but we always seem to make it work. So many families that we have been able to provide financial assistance, have been extremely grateful for what our foundation has given them. However, it’s not just the foundation’s generosity but also to the many people that have been so generous with their donations throughout the years.
A VERY HEARTFELT THANK YOU TO ALL WHO HAVE HELPED AND BELIEVED IN OUR CAUSE
Sometimes it’s hard to remember the things that Mike has progressed with, when we are always looking for the giant steps. A very hard lesson to learn when living with someone with a traumatic brain injury (TBI). It takes time and much patience. Many times we let our frustrations of emotions take control of us. Wanting so desperately to move on, yet not having any control. Learning the hard way that as much we “think” we are in control. we are NOT. But our memory of 7-8-09 brings us back to the day when we almost lost Mike and we snap back to reality and realize that this guy has progressed. Small steps but always going in the right direction.
As I write this blog, I think of that day when we were told by doctors that there was little hope for him. Our son laying in a vegetative state and will probably be this way for the rest of his life. Thank God, we didn’t listen.
As of today Mike has mastered getting out of the car with very little assistance and Next Steps is working on accomplishing getting into the car. We continue to do Functional Neurology with Dr. George and home therapies from the Carrick Brain Center. We also have been seeing a developmental Optometrist (Dr. Lederer of Arlington Hts) to help Mike with his tracking and concentration for reading. Which has helped tremendously! Mike actually enjoys reading. Hallelujah!!! Our new adventure since December is traditional Chinese Natural herbal medicine with Alvan at Shine Institute. Using acupressure, supplements, teas, and inflammation spray. He has been aligning Mike’s spine, adjusting his neck, and using energy. All for the purpose of everything reaching his brain and relearning. And YES, these therapies have all been working.
As proud parents, we are happy to say that Mike will be attending this fall at Elmhurst College. A scary step for all of us involved but everything we have done in the past 6yrs has bee scary. We have learned to take things day by day, step by step.
Whatever struggles you may endure….Remember several things: Patience, Hope, Strength, and most importantly Faith!