Today Gabby Giffords made a dramatic return to the House to cast her vote for the debt debacle. Watching the short video clip on MSN confirmed my worst suspicions. She was shot in the left side of her head, and it appears that her right side is seriously affected. She did not raise her right hand at all. She smiled a lot and waved, but I really didn’t see her speak.
When the news of her dramatic recovery first hit the news, I was so hopeful that she would just wake up and be Gabby again. Brain injuries are so hard to figure out. It seemed that initially she was doing so well according to the news reports. No pictures were ever posted, but hey, she had brain surgery, and her head shaved etc. Her privacy was well protected.
It just seemed that she was well ahead of schedule, and the reports made it seem like she would just get right up and walk out of the hospital and go straight to the House of Representatives. But then as time went on, I knew that would not be the case. She had to learn so many things over again. Bob Woodruff, the news anchor, was back reporting in 13 months, and the only real difference you can see is a dent in his head. He went through a similar recovery, learning to talk all over again etc. So I am still hopeful for Gabby, that each day will bring her closer to her full abilities. But everyone, EVERYONE, is different.
I just wonder if inside her brain she is frustrated that her body will not do the things it used to do. I had a good friend years ago who had a stroke, and a long recovery. When she came back to work, she was indeed different, and would be for the rest of her life. But the same person was still inside her brain, and she knew how life had changed for her, and was very frustrated and very sad about it. She was a vibrant, social person, the life of the party, and came out the other side with a permanent limp and speech difficulties. You could see it in her eyes, though. The pain and suffering she was STILL experiencing, from the loss of the life she once knew.
Gabby will get better. Much better, I am sure. She has the best of care. Luckily for her, she has government insurance. Me, I have nothing. Nada. No insurance. But, I still wouldn’t trade places with her. She has a long road ahead of her. But with the wonderful support system she has, and the loving husband by her side, she will do just fine.
You Go Gabby Girl!