"It's Not All Black And White"
A Survivor's View Of Life
Perfect Bound Softcover
On July 3rd, 1979 Daniel Windheim at the age of 16 was a passenger in a car that was involved in an accident.From this point onward he became a member of the world of the disabled. Being a member of this community has forced him to alter his existence, and face life life with new focus.He now has dedicated his life to educating the public about Brain Injury's, and differences life sometimes gives us. Through his web site www.tbilife.com , he reaches out toward other survivors to grow stronger, and make life better.
Along with his mother Marjorie Windheim, the two discuss the misunderstandings the world may have toward the disabled, ie. Brain Injury survivors, and what may make life easier.Their focus for this book is to reach survivors of TBI, their families, and individuals who service this population.
The idea that "it's not all black and white" means that things are not all or nothing, or this or that. Things must be looked at in different ways.This book includes Q&A sections with responses from real people.
Mom:” Nothing is black and white but black and white”! My son and I are walking along the Hudson River on an unusually warm late winter’s day. As usual we are philosophizing and this thought occurs to me. I go on to say” of course there are zebras, skunks.and cats, but almost every thing else must be qualified. “A thought like when a cloud covers the sun and then is blown past revealing the hot yellow glow of King Sol. This black and white theory applies to Dan’s life. Because of the fates, which created him as a head trauma survivor, he has had to move forwards to recognize the grays in life He has discovered, as did I before him, that gray can be beautiful- whether it is the river during high tide or the sky as a storm approaches. He was not always able to do this and this inability pre-dated his head injury at age 16. To describe this evolution, I will share with you first the little boy I remember then the teen whose life was changed in a moment on July 3rd, 1979 and finally the man Dan has grown into.
Daniel will also write a section describing each period of his life
Our goal is together by describing Dan’s experience as a Traumatic Brain Injury survivor and my experiences as his mother and number I cheer leader to create a piece of work that may be helpful to other survivors.
Dan: Coming Together as one (or the Quarterback of my team)
Now that I have finished my book called “The Poem Book” I see the need to create a second book. Not just any book but a book to help survivors of TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury) to realize that our lives can and do continue and will continue despite this major set back.
TBI takes many tolls on our lives and each residual effect differs for each of us. As each individual differs (blue eyes, blond hair) each brain injury’s effect is different;it may range from impaired physical activity, to a speech impairment to an involuntary tremor or it may not be visible to the naked eye at all and may manifest itself in impaired judgment. That is why TBI is often called “the hidden disability” An injured brain may not be apparent as say, a broken leg, but it’s effects run much deeper
The idea that it’s not all black and white is a concept that I have trouble recognizing at times. Since my brain injury in 1979 my view of the world has become very simple or concrete. I see many things as good or bad, black or white so to speak. At times I know that due to my brain injury I don’t view the world accurately.
We live in a world where people in general don’t always take the time to react and then make a decision. Add to this neurological damage and one’s world is way off kilter. I do my best to live a good life, to dress well, act appropriately and treat everyone like I want to be treated. I live my life as best I can yet for me as for many of my fellow brain injury survivors, depression is common. Yet the consensus is that there are constantly new discoveries in neurological research and new methodologies are being discovered daily. They say that the capacity of the brain is unknown (supposedly we only use 10 % of it). From where I’m sitting the next 100 years will be filled with many new discoveries and surprises. Myself and other TBI survivors need to hang in there and keep working to be our best. We must persevere, and look forward to improved treatments and services.
Dan Windheim is a native New Yorker, who attended Nyack High School, in the seventies and eighties. In 1979, in the midst of his high school years, Dan was a passenger in a car accident, and sustained a Brain Stem injury. But this did not deter him. Dan went on to graduate high school in 1981, and to later receive a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from St. Thomas Aquinas College in Sparkill, NY. Today, he is living in Garnerville, N.Y.. He has been employed at The Nyack Library for the past fifteen years. .Dan is also currently involved with his web site which focuses on Brain Stem Injury, and valuing life (http://www.tbilife.com/ and is constantly exercising his body and mind to better his life. He is still a huge sports fan, following all year round.
Marjorie Windheim was born and raised in Jersey City, New Jersey. She graduated from the University of Connecticut with a Bachelor of Arts degree and from Fordham University with a Master's in Social Work. For the past 28 years she has been employed as a Supervisor working with individuals, families and vulnerable adults. She has three children and three grandchildren of which she is very proud. In seeing all Dan’s efforts to locate services for TBI survivors; first for himself and later for others, she is very proud to share in telling his story.
Perfect Bound Softcover