The holidays can be a challenging time for individuals who have suffered a brain injury. Victims of traumatic brain injury, often display an unexplainable sense of loss of an ability to understand why they can’t find joy in the season. To compound the issue, the holidays tend to amplify emotions that are already present. Coping issues are considered normal for victims of TBI.
As with the daily challenges of dealing with a brain injury, the best practice is pre- planning. Planning ahead will help not only the injured person, but also their families and friends.
Some suggest that this is a time to establish new routines or modify old ones. As always, it’s best to discuss changes between all the stakeholders in caring for the injured party.
Even with all these changes and emotions, there are a number of ways you can make the holidays bright and decrease the difficulties:
First, since finances may be strained, there are a lot of simple and inexpensive ways to celebrate. Small tokens such as baked goods, personal notes, or simply spending quality time together watching movies can brighten the holidays.
If you do need to shop, planning ahead can be key to limiting distractions and complications. Rather than wandering from store to store and place to place, call ahead to see if the store has what you’re trying to find. Use small wins to keep everyone motivated. Scratching off even one or two items can provide everyone involved a sense of accomplishment.
Alternatively, there are two solutions for the problem of dealing with the overwhelming crowds of big box stores or malls. The first is to shop online. There are a number of “deal” sites on the web, and in some cases you can order the items online and pick them up in store. Otherwise, you may want to look into smaller shops that provide more specialized gifts. There are a number of local options, tucked away in niche communities of Pinellas County, like Gulfport or the Grand Central District.
Cooking for a small get-together can also be a fun family activity. You no longer need a mound of cookbooks in order to find a unique and delicious recipe. However, keep in mind that cooking shouldn’t require too many ingredients. Keep it simple with recipes of 4 to 5 ingredients.
If you’re religious, try going to earlier services. They tend to be less hectic and crowded. As an alternative, those with insomnia or who stay up late might want to try mass or candlelight services.
Lastly, giving back can be an extremely rewarding experience. Activities where you can help community organizations create a team-oriented environment can be rewarding. Find a local organization via the internet, and contact them in advance to see if they have any special requirements for their volunteers.
No matter what your reasons for celebrating, remember that this time of year is really about family, friends and coming together as a community. It’s a time where we’re thankful for those who affect our lives. We wish each of you good health and a swift recovery.
Matthew A. Dolman, Esq., is a Florida traumatic brain injury attorney. He has built a reputation among his peers for successful outcomes obtained for victims of traumatic brain injury. For more information or to schedule a free consultation and case evaluation, please call the injury law attorneys at the Dolman Law Group today at: (727) 451-6900.