Hi Everyone,

Last night wasn’t as restful as I had hoped. My eyes were closed, unfortunately my mind was wide awake! I did receive a call but not with the news I was waiting for. Some of the documentation did not get faxed until today, so we must wait another day…Please send your guardian angels out to the Medical Director who will be reading our case tomorrow. I will fill in the details when we get our first decision (good or bad).

Even though we were waiting for the phone to ring, we took advantage of the opportunities we had to keep moving forward. Today was a special day. We met with our teacher representative, Dave, from Brain STEPS.

The Brain Injury Association of PA, under contract from the PA Department of Health and partnered with the PA Department of Education, has created the Child & Adolescent Brain Injury School Re-entry Program called Brain STEPS (Strategies Teaching Educators, Parents and Students.

Dave has been a Special Education teacher for 35 years, specializing in Neurological disorders. His job is to educate the Educators and assist with a student’s transition back to the school environment post injury.

There is a saying in the TBI world; “If you know 1 person with a traumatic brain injury then you know 1 person with a traumatic brain injury”. Every TBI is different. What works for Corey today might not work for her in the next 5 minutes let alone tomorrow, nor will it work for another TBI survivor. Each person is unique which challenges a family trying to marry the clinical and academic models. They are completely different in their objectives.

As we continue to watch Corey evolve, it’s critical to keep our team updated and working cohesively with each new discovery. Whatever we observe and try at Bryn Mawr, we report to the home school team and vice versa. Dave’s expertise is to listen to the techniques of both teams and share the latest resources in the TBI world that can help us help Corey.

Dave hasn’t seen Corey in almost a year. He was astonished by her progress. Every time she spoke or interjected a comment he was amazed at her cognitive awareness and ability to communicate (she wasn’t speaking more than a few words when he last saw her).

We discussed her vision, her issues with recognizing letters, numbers etc. and listened to the strategies and techniques we’ve been using to help advance her recovery. Since last week, this includes the use of Sight Word flash cards.

The issues Corey has had with her vision (left neglect and peripheral) may be one limiting factor, but her inconsistent answers could also be a combination of cognitively recognizing the letters but not recalling what the name of the letter is and/or recognizing the word but not the meaning of the word…or all of the above!

We had a very informative session and will continue to work on new discoveries. Tonight at dinner she reached for the stack of flash cards and handed them to me. We thought you would enjoy a bedtime story from Corey. Happy dreams, xoxo

Corey Beattie can read