Injury Aftermath

Injury Aftermath is an in-depth exploration of the emotional impact of an injury. The physical impacts are usually felt immediately, but often emotional trauma lives long beyond the physical wounds. Injury Aftermath dares to explore and expose the emotional journey embarked upon when a serious injury occurs.

My journey began on November 22, 2008. It seemed like another Saturday of renovating where I spent far too much time with far too little progress completely unaware my life was about to take a dramatic turn. It was the end of a long day when an effort to save time resulted in the unsafe use of a tool and placed me on the receiving end of a table saw kickback. The results were devastating! My right hand was crushed; my pointer and ring fingers were amputated and my middle finger and thumb were barely hanging on. Thankfully, a surgical team was able to reattach my thumb and middle finger and through hope, perseverance, rehabilitation and healing I have regained much of the functionality of a hand I once took for granted.

The Doctor described my thumb as being shattered and in many respects I felt that was true for my life as well. As time passed perspective grew and I began to realize my injury, though very painful, was minor compared to the suffering many people endure. Since I used to be an Industrial Arts teacher I felt compelled to find a way to share my experience with others which was accomplished through a safety message I developed entitled “STOP Cutting Corners”. I found that sharing the story of my injury was a way to warn others not to be complacent regarding safety, but it also lessened the emotional pain I was suffering. 

Realizing that the emotional fallout often outweighs physical limitations I developed a second presentation entitled “Injury Aftermath” which refers more to the emotional journey and the impact an injury can have on your well-being, your job and on your family. I uncover the range of emotions that needs to be worked through when dealing with a serious injury including: Frustration, Anger, Pain, Victimization, Loss, Fragility and Entrapment. I don’t stop there; I also equip the audience with the tools I used to overcome these negative feelings including: Forgiveness, Perspective, Perseverance, Hope, Blessing, Encouragement, Love, Acceptance, Adaptation and Healing.

Injury Aftermath isn’t intended to make attendees feel my pain, but to have empathy and understanding for injury survivors. My hope is that people, who may be held captive by emotional trauma, can use my presentation as a guide to overcome the adversities and obstacles they are facing.

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