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Brain Injury Survivor Stories

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Josh Dotson

On September 15th 1996, I had a gun shot accident. The doctor's kept telling my parent's I had a 50/50 chance of living, I was in a coma for 4-6 weeks after that I was sent to Ballard Rehab, & at that time I was the youngest patient there so I basically was spoiled rotten. This is where I learned to talk, & get minor movement of my right arm. I was sent home on February 1st 1997, because I thought it was just a waste of time. I went to St. Mary's hospital for a few months, I was actually taking steps, only thing holding me was this one big guy (not fat either, just muscle) John, he had to be over 6 feet tall.

Everything was going good until one of the secretary's messed up & sent in a duplicate form to get more OT & PT approved. After that, I was referred to in home Hospice that went good for a while, until this one OT blew up at me because my left hand would not open up. So my mom ended up canceling that service. Later on, my mom found a place here in Barstow that has outpatient Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy called Chaparral(don't know if I spelled the name right), that was going good for almost a year but sadly that ended up going downhill also. The last time I went there this one PT who 'so called' graduated Physical Therapist College messed up my legs big time, she was sitting on my right leg & made my left knee touch my nose while my leg was still straight! That’s when I was still tighter then a rubber band. All that happened while I was on home study for junior high & high school, so my last PT & OT was in 2000.

So, after that, I just focused on my schoolwork & graduated in 2002 & I got my diploma along with a wallet size version :). I was allowed to do my homework on the computer, but between all that, I got more & more use of my right hand. On May 17th, 2007, I was in for a huge surgery to have a Baclofen pump put in at LLUMC, and it has greatly helped me, after I had to lay flat for 24 hours. I was sent to inpatient at Loma Linda University Medical Center, after I was sent home from there on May 25, 2007, & in June 2007 I started going to outpatient PT & OT in Loma Linda, when my grip was first tested it was between 30-40, so I was told to start working out at home also, which I did. I started out with a 1-pound dumbbell & slowly worked up. Again, everything was going good until I ran out of visits, my dad's insurance only covers 30 of each PT & OT per year, & I was almost back, to where I was when I was still able to go to St. Mary's, & my grip strength was up to 60.

I had a plate put on July 29th 2008, was sent home on the 31st & emergency repair surgery on august 23rd 2008 & was sent home on September 1st 2008.

I have had a lot of hard times since after I came home I found out someone told the news that I had died, so I haven't had any of my friends that I went to school with to cheer me on or cheer me up when I'm feeling down, just my parents & my sister. Only problem I have really is being even shyer then I was before my accident.

For those that want to know, here is a list of things that keep me going: my family, getting hugs from lady’s (what guy wouldn't like getting hugs from lady's especially the ones I REALLY like which is about 90% of the ones I have seen), the MANY different video games I have because if I never have found a interest in my games I think I would of just killed myself when I got home in 1997. Drastic thing to say but it’s true, but I don't recommend video games for those who can walk or able to get out of the house either by themselves or with someone.

Last thing that keeps me going is my daily workouts I do. I do my 35-pound curls, 5-pound range of potion for my right arm. That is WITH a 5-pound weight strapped around my wrist. Then after I eat dinner, I do my tabletop bike for 45 min every night I have time.

Josh Dotson 


Author: Lisa Moss

Categories: Brain Injury BiosNumber of views: 4315

Tags: Brain Injury

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