The family support groups that we lead at Shepherd Center on Saturdays continue to give our lives purpose and show us the need for our book, Brain Storm. In the past couple of weeks, we have talked with families whose loved ones have had strokes, brain bleeds, car wrecks, falls, bicycle wrecks and the ever-present motorcycle accidents. They are all unique experiences, but the recovery of the brain and the trauma the families endure are very similar. This weekend we met with four families who had just started on this journey. We talked about their various events, how they personally were handling their lives being turned upside down, and offered hope and encouragement with the constant reminder that it takes time--a long time--but each step forward is one worth celebrating. Little steps become very big ones in the grand scheme of things.
We also checked in with families and patients with whom we had counseled on previous Saturdays to see how they were progressing. It warmed our hearts as they broke into big smiles when they saw us. They were anxious to tell us of their great strides over the past week and what a source of strength and help our book has been to them.
Two families are preparing to move on to Pathways, Shepherd's outpatient rehab center. THAT is a huge step, and we rejoice with them. It's amazing how a brain injury can draw you into close relationships with people you otherwise would never meet. They bless our lives! May your life be blessed this week as you reach out to those around you who can use some encouragement. A simple smile can often do the trick!