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Thread: 2 SCI injuries in 18 months - help

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Tampa, FL
    Posts
    14

    Exclamation 2 SCI injuries in 18 months - help

    Hi there - it's been almost 2 years since the last time I checked this forum. I had alot of hope back then, now I have almost none. My cousin, who is like my brother..literally was paralyzed in a freak accident that should have never happened. He was in ICU for almost 2 months and the hospital for 83 days straight. I did what I had to for him and was there every day. He got out of the hosipital and is went back home a quad. Then his older sister got married, we all went to the wedding and my whole family was there. It was a great time, I can even quote my father saying "Damn, it's nice to have everyone here and everyone is actually happy about something." That didn't last long, that night another one of my cousins got into a severe car wreck. He tore his spine in half and is now a para from the waist down. In all fairness, he should be dead. I mean his car was torn in half from right at the firewall and i have the pics to prove any doubters.

    For the last 2 years i have never felt so aged, so defeated and so weary. In the last month or so I have been having nightmares, flashbacks, panic attacks and uncontrollable stress. I have actually called an ambulance because I thought I was having a heart attack.

    Here's the kicker - I'm 24. My two cousins... 24 and 25, both have permanent disablities. We all grew up together and I'm the only one who can still walk. I can't even look at family pictures without staring off or feeling like I am in a bubble, sometimes I can't even hear people talk to me when I zone out.

    I've gone to a Dr. and have been referred to a phsyciatrist (i know i spelled it wrong) I'm too afraid to talk about this stuff in great detail - what I miss, my anger, my memories, my dreams, etc. No one can relate to me on this subject. Shit, who do you know that has had 2 cousins, or anyone for that matter, that were both paralyzed for life?? That whole "they're will be a cure" maybe so, but it's a ways off. I'm getting nervous because I don't really feel any emotions, not even towards my wife. I just want to get away from everyone. I honestly don't think I could handle it again. I seriously think i am suffering from PTSD, but I'm no professional.

    I guess what I'm asking for is any suggestion on what to do. What have you done that has helped deal with the pain and the constant reminder that someone is still suffering an unfair sentence?? Maybe I'm just venting here cause I can.. idk

    I know I found help here before, maybe I can find it again.

  2. #2
    That is unbelievable. I am glad to hear you are talking to a professional. Are you somehow blaming yourself in any particular fashion for the events which led up to the accident, without you knowing about it? For example, did you call your cousin on a cell phone prior to him driving off and getting in a wreck, and now you are thinking, "if I only didn't make that call..."

    Sometimes, the numbers just are not on your side. We are a small population, and the chances for initiation are small. But once in a long while, for some reason, the numbers line up and you get something tragic like this.

    I don't have any specific recommendations for you. But you are way ahead of the game just talking to a professional. It might not hurt to talk to another professional either. Maybe someone who is a specialist in something like what you are going through.
    No one ever became unsuccessful by helping others out

  3. #3

    Time

    I felt similar.

    My brother and I grew up together (1 year apart) and we were best friends. We were together 24/7 for most of my life.

    We have been apart for 5 years now. He's been a paraplegic from the chest down for 2 years.

    I felt bad for everything I did. Driving a car I would think about how he can't touch the peddles. Walking I would feel bad he couldn't. Anything I could do that he coulnd't, i felt bad.

    The feelings never really go away completely. But I will say that they do not bother me as much anymore.

    You have to realize that their is life after these accidents. Life got altered for your cousins. But they still have life. Their path has changed, thats all.

    I feel bad for my brother all the time, but I see him changing all the time too. He has his ups and downs. But I see him happy now. And when he gets a new toy (champiot recently). He loves it. For some reason, I think you just get used to the situation and you go with it.

    It will be hard for you to not feel bad for them. It was hard for me to accept my brothers condition. He was the one that worked construction and landscaping etc. He had no brains so to speak. I had all the brains and worked with compters and electronics. I wonder if I would have been better off paralised if we had a choice between us.

    Again, over time most of these feelings are now in the way back side of my head. I have learned to accept it. I have learned to go with what you have. Not with what you dont have.

    Your cousins have each other to share their feelings with too. They both know what it's like first hand. They can both use each other to vent.
    You have to be their and help them when you can. But live your life the way you want to as well.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    So. California
    Posts
    1,061
    I think any of us who have a loved one in a wheelchair suffers some guilt. I think it's normal. Don't be so hard on yourself. Your cousins are really lucky to have you. Spend time with them, when you can, and offer to help when they need it. Don't let the wheelchairs get in the way of your relationship. Treat them the same way you did before - they will appreciate it. My nephew sufferd a neck injury about 6 months after my son. The nephew recovered 100% - he was very, very lucky! We could not believe that this could happen twice in the same family!

    I can't speak for others here, but I try not to think of this as an unfair sentence. I try very hard to be spiritual about it and believe there is a "plan" and God knows what he is doing. My son is doing well and I am grateful for that. He is doing things with his life that he would not have done had it not been for his accident. This is what gets me thru each day. Good luck and hang in there!

  5. #5
    It's really weird hearing a story like this...

    I broke my neck in a diving accident June 10 of last year (C4 C5 inc.)
    Two months later my cousin Eric broke his neck in a very similar diving accident (C7-T1 inc.)
    We both spent the summer at Craig Hospital in Denver, but only one of us ended up walking out. We were pretty much like brothers before, and we still keep in touch on a regular basis. I know he feels terrible that he is almost completely recovered and I'm still in a chair, but it's just one of those freak deals that you can't do anything about.
    I haven't been here all that long, but you definitely come to the right place for all the information and support you could ever need.
    "All of us are all too stuck strapped to a chair watching our lives blow up..."

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