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My name is Daniel Garcia and I had an AVM in July 2020. The AVM came on suddenly and my wife saved my life by calling 911 almost immediately. I was given little chance of survival or risk of becoming a vegetable. I was in the hospital for a little over a month and in inpatient rehab for another month. Due to paralysis on my right side, I had to relearn walking, talking, balance, swallowing and many more things. After I came home, there were many things that had to change. Showering in a chair, putting in contact lenses, easy activities were now significantly different. When I came home in august of 2020, I still had not had my craniotomy surgery. Wearing a helmet day to day was not easy to get over, it really bothered me. After the surgery, I still hadn’t been released to return to work. All of the outpatient rehabilitation services were incredible.
I returned to work in February of 2021 doing my previous job of construction management. Life has continued to be different and deficiencies still exist, however the have slightly been improving due to constant work I put in. Speech is better, hopefully one day it can be nearly what it was pre-injury. I have continued to focus on improving outlook on life as a whole. It has been difficult. The AVM affected everyone around me.
I don’t know how much this matters, but after I came home from inpatient care, it would have been very nice to have been able to talk to someone that had been through something similar. Not knowing what might be your future, what recovery might look like in 6 months, a year, etc.. Being able to talk to someone that can relate to a TBI is important. Mesa College in San Diego offers courses for people that have suffered a TBI. It can be very helpful to converse with others with similar experiences. For me, one instance when I met someone that was a speech therapist, I almost wanted to hug them and befriend them immediately. Speech was such a hard thing to overcome. I still use a special retainer from a specialty dentist that helps me speak.
Not sure how that may help, just wanted to share.