My Journey with ABI

My name is Judy Johnston and my ABI story begins seven years ago. When it happened I had spent most of my adult life as Judith A. Johnston, a professional, a Licensed Employee Benefits Consultant and Vice President of a Life Insurance Brokerage. It took many weeks of being in hospital before I came to understand that I had been a victim of a car crash. The injuries I sustained have left me with Acquired Brain Injury, impaired vision, recurring back and neck issues, loss of hearing, the loss of my sense of smell and balance issues. 

It has been, and continues to be, a long journey to recovery, but I now call myself a survivor of a life altering event. Inside I am still that Judith Ann Johnston I was before the accident, and I am grateful for her qualities and strengths that have come through as I slowly make my way down this road I call my “New Normal”.  

Judy's Blog 

Our Creativity is waiting to re-emerge...

Think about what you liked to do in your youth. Was it writing in a journal, building model ships or planes, drawing, playing an instrument, anything that held you captive as you created something new or continued to build on an activity or avocation you truly enjoyed doing?

 In my pre-ABI life’s story I went to university, entered into the work force and continued to build on an existing family business, married later in life, while always trying to provide emotional and personal support to others that needed me to be there for them.  I believe that we were all impacted by the proverbial treadmill of the “daily grind”. Those seemingly routine activities turned into an avalanche of responsibilities. For so many of us, we become seemingly unaware of how we are impacted by allowing our pre-ABI life responsibilities to take away our “ME” time, pulling us away from those long ago life fulfilling and socially enriching activities.

In this journey of coming to terms with my brain injury, and the impact it has had on me, I am finding my creative side once again. It took time. It took the cajoling, suggestions and patience of those around me to allow me to find my way back to those things I did in my youth. Because of their support I am richer in spirit for finding my way back to writing, drawing and a new passion for painting watercolours. Each activity energizes me, making me think and feel a personal sense of “self-accomplishment”.

It may be something you did before your ABI. It can be something, that until now, you haven’t given much thought to trying it out.  What about working on a puzzle, reading, or putting energy into looking at and cataloguing past and present family photos? And, even if you need someone to help you with that activity, the positive impact to your well being is that you will light up when you are able to carry it through, by talking about it in a social setting, with self-pride.

Find your escape back to what you enjoyed doing in your youth and allow those experiences to help you move forward.

Posted 235 weeks ago

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