Taylor has been attending CNS full-time for about 3 weeks now, and it’s going very well. She likes that she has days that are full, because she is still someone who likes to stay busy. Her original plan was to go back to MIT in January 2015, which would be just short of 1 year since her accident. However, she probably won’t be ready to go back by then because she and I are both discovering that neurological recovery is a very slow and long process. Although she continues to make improvements, she will most likely not be back to independent living by January of 2015. Her new plan is to go back in September 2015, probably part-time for 2 semesters, and then finish full-time for her last 2 years. This, she calculates, will put her 2 years behind her original class (2016). The amazing thing is, she came up with this plan all by herself. She understands her limitations in a very mature way, but is still driven to go back to school. We had our first family meeting at CNS last week, and all the therapists said that Taylor is the perfect patient. She is pleasant to be around, does everything they ask, and is completely motivated. Taylor still continues to amaze me with her upbeat attitude and determination, despite what she has been handed.
This Saturday, Sept. 13, Taylor and her family and friends will be participating in the 7th Annual Walk for Brain Injury Association of California (BIACAL) at Santa Anita Park. Founded in 2005, BIACAL is a chartered state affiliate of the Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA), the country’s oldest and largest nationwide brain injury advocacy organization. With a joint mission to advance brain injury prevention, research, treatment and education, BIACAL strives to improve the quality of life for all Californians affected by brain injury.
Taylor has her own donation page to raise money for this worthwhile non-profit organization. If you are interested in donating, please visit her page at: http://biacal.donordrive.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=donorDrive.participant&participantID=15325
Today was Taylor’s first day of therapy at the “Center for Neuro Skills”-CNS in Encino. It is a switch from the coaching/home therapy we were doing to an intense 6 hour a day, 5 days a week skilled care program. Her first day was not so tough, as Taylor has been working hard at home and was prepared to handle the workload. Her new therapist team seems great. Taylor chose to switch to this program herself to speed up her recovery.
Leaving Rancho Los Amigos was sad, as everyone there has been wonderful to us, and the therapists are top notch. On our last day (yesterday), Taylor did a lot of follow-up testing and evaluations, which showed remarkable improvement on almost every measure. We will miss the staff at Rancho greatly. Here is a picture of Taylor and two visiting friends from MIT, Kyra and Justine -when they were here back in July, at Rancho with the Rancho Chief Medical Officer Dr. Mindy Aisen, who is an MIT alum herself.