Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Brother one

There is a brother two, but I had less to do with him as he grew up. Brother two was a difficult child, and in spite of him now being seperated from his wife, at least he gave us a nephew and two nieces. He struggles with the demon drink and mostly succeeds.

Brother one has an aquired brain injury, but he works a normal job and has his own house and car, and functions fairly well. He managed to put on this years cmas dinner for the family and did an ok job.

We just have to watch his spending at times. He is prone to spend money to make easy money. He also needs lists for himself and has to have a highly organised life with plenty of time allowances for some slowness. He put new heating in his house and has never used it and likewise airconditioning. His washing machine water is used to flush his toilet. We had to turn the toilet tap on for cmas day.

Before his accident, he used to visit the local pub every night, come home to my mother's house where he lived, swayed a bit, spoke a few slow sentences and et his dinner and went to bed. He was usually ok the next day to particpate in sporting events or to umpire them.

Then suddenly, without any obvious reason, he gave up drinking and smoking.

A few months later, he rode his bike (his car license was suspended for a drink driving incident before he gave up drinking) from a side street directly onto a highway and was smashed up very badly. He nearly died. We had prepared ourselves for it. But thanks to the dedicated staff at Dandenong Hospital and what was then I think RTA rehabilitation, he survived and went on to being a self sufficient and working taxpaying member of society.

We lived in Balaclava then and we made endless trips to Dandenong hospital and subsequently the rehab place in Mulgrave. We trusted the system to work for him and it did. When he awoke from the coma, he spoke with a clipped English accent. It was well after the he left the hospital that my mother told me that his primary nurse in hospital was of English South African heritage and she used to talk constantly to him when he was in a coma for umpteen weeks.

Sometimes I think about her and wonder about what a difference she made to his life.

Although there have been family discussions, no one really knows why my brother deliberately rode his bike straight out onto the highway and of course got cleaned up by a car a very distressed driver with a damaged car.

Brother has no memory of the event or the time leading up to it.

1 comment:

  1. That just sounds horrendous. I am so glad that he is doing okay for himself now. My brother has a habit of riding into on coming traffic and sometimes I worry.

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