This is your Life…. Paul

In the beginning…
I was happily living in Melbourne in East Bentley…working for Honeywell as an IT troubleshooter…and FIFO out of Karratha! I had a very active life including swimming, windsurfing, dancing Zouk at the old town hall in Richmond! Frequently out for dinner and seeing shows….of course it is Melbourne! Regularly tripping to Perth to visit family and friends…in short I had total Independence and enjoyed life to the fullest!

My life significantly changed on 1st of June 2009 at the Bourke St exit off the freeway! On my way home from work I failed to negotiate the off ramp leaving the freeway…where I collided with a concrete barrier! This is when I sustained my ABI … welcome to my nightmare!!!

I was admitted to the Alberrt Hospital for an MRI then transferred to Sandringham hospital and ended up at Caulfield hospital for ongoing rehabilitation! The decision was made to fly me back to Perth with my son Josh where my family lived as Josh had been appointed my guardian! There I was admitted to Shenton Park rehab hospital…these were very dark and frustrating days for me! I remained there for approx 12 months and due to improvement was moved over to a group living facility in Victoria Park called Oats Street (Brightwater…where life was indeed brighter!) My rehab continued well and I gained much greater independence due to the fabulous staff and the diligence of the OTs and speech therapists etc! Then came the time to fly the coup and test my wings in my own home… Brightwater chose Camcan as my ongoing care provider and Gordon Miller was appointed as my Public Trustee to manage my financial affairs! Several months ago I moved back into my very own villa in Corbett St, Scarborough and it was like heaven after hell and I felt so very happy! I have had several carers over this time and as camcan are very diligent in matching up carers with clients…I now have two permanent carers/friends who suit me very well…. The lovely Christina….queen of cooking and colourful social butterfly! The lovely Janet….Ginger Rodgers of dancing and exercise/meditaion/healing and travel/globe trotting companion! Clayton also helps me to re-establish my IT neurons and works with all things technical!

Life still has its daily challenges but is improving constantly and I am very grateful for all the people that help me…. Cam can have been a wonderful care provider as has Bridget Scott and all the team involved with my support! In October I was fortunate to take a fabulous holiday over to Canada with Janet to attend my nieces wedding in Toronto! It was a wonderful month and as fate would have it we became aware that my sister in law had also suffered an ABI 5 years earlier! This was obviously the true reason why this trip had to be taken….Marlene has been a mine of information and ideas for us to copy in our ongoing pursuit of rehabilitation and living a happy and balanced life with as much independence as possible… More importantly Marlene has given me proof that things can and will improve over time…and more skills to make it happen! We cannot thank camcan and all involved in this journey enough….it was inspiring, supportive and very grounding to touch base with my family and friends from a life before ABI!

Since returning Janet is taking me dancing at JDK Pub Jiving every Sunday and has implemented a weekly cello lesson….music and dance are so therapeutic and healing! I also take myself off to Ellingtons Jazz Club in Northbridge regularly to witness more fabulous music and make new likeminded friends! I am back on the windsurfer and hope to teach this sport to others when my pre-existing skills have been suitably polished up! Through contacts from Ellingtons I hope to revisit my skills as a piano tuner with the view to also work in that field! As the old saying goes……Do the things you love and you will never work a day in your life!

On that positive note I will Love and leave you….and once again to all involved in getting my life back on track……. A very big and heartfelt ….THANKYOU!!!