As part of Headway's Memory Loss: A campaign to remember some of our clients have agreed to share their experiences of memory loss following significant head trauma and how they are coping with the long-term effects.
Today we hear from Cathie who was hit by an uninsured, drunk driver while walking her dog, Woody near her home in West Norfolk. Sadly, Woody died in the accident and Cathie was knocked unconscious, sustaining injuries to her head and shoulder.
Cathie explains: "The accident happened about two years ago and although I now feel well enough to get on with life, I am very aware that my memory doesn't serve me as well as it used to. You just know that you are 'not as you were'.
"I think it's my family that really notices the difference in me - I can be a lot less tolerant than I used to be and I struggle with anxiety which can be completely overwhelming. My husband has said I am not as sharp as I was; not as quick on the uptake."
She continues: "I'm also aware that at times I struggle to find the right words in conversation and I'm also much more emotional since the accident.
"I also have problems processing lots of information at once - I hear the words, but I simply cannot take it in. I have had to be brave and not be afraid to ask people to repeat themselves and to break down what they are saying to me into smaller chunks so I can digest it.
"My head injury has also meant I have had to give up the job I loved, as I simply cannot deal with the details any more.
"Fosters helped me hugely - apart from getting me far more compensation than I thought possible, whenever I spoke to the team, no matter who I spoke to, they always gave me all the time I needed to explain and understand things. I never felt rushed or that anyone was trying to get me off the phone. The kindness and patience I have experienced from the whole team has been a really big thing for me."
If you would like to chat about your experiences of brain injury with our personal injury department and to see if they could help to support you through a claims process - please do contact them by calling 0800 731 8539 or by completing our online enquiry form.
The charity helps provide support and services for those who have suffered brain injury and their families. For more information on local Headway services please visit the websites of Headway Norfolk and Headway Suffolk.