Patient images

Some intimate images that my partner James took at the time, as he had the foresight to realise I would want to be able to look back at once of the most significant moments of my life.

Sedated in resusitation unit after being flown into the Royal London Hospital
Sedated in resuscitation unit after being flown into the Royal London Hospital

I have mixed emotions about this image. You can see all the medical equipment I’m hooked up to as they try to stabilise my stats. They wrapped me in bubble wrap because patients with traumatic injuries can lose body heat very quickly, so it’s one of the easiest ways to help maintain body temperature.

I can only imagine what it was like for James as he sat by my side wondering what my prognosis was.

But now I find myself studying the liquid eyeliner on my eyelids which I think is pretty nicely applied. Unfortunately I haven’t been able to achieve this since my accident and is just one of the little things that has continued to frustrate me. I know its vain, but as someone who previously had a career managing big name cosmetics counters in department stores, it had become part of my identity.

I was eventually moved to the neurosurgery unit. Although I had didn't had surgery I was must have been there because hey though I had a brain injury. However they never explained that it could be more than concussion.
I was eventually moved to the neurosurgery unit. Although I did not have surgery it must have been there because they thought I had a brain injury. However they never explained that it could be more than concussion.

"James

When I moved ward I was rewarded with a stunning view of the London sky line.
When I moved ward I was rewarded with a stunning view of the London sky line.
With my bed by the window, I remember joking how a hotel would have charged a fortune for this position.
With my bed by the window, I remember joking how a hotel would have charged a fortune for this position.

When I was in hospital I don’t think I ever understood the magnitude of what had happened to me. Actually now I’m not sure if I was able to even take it seriously.

At no point was I particularly panicked about the fact I had woken up in hospital. I realised my head and neck hurt like nothing I had ever know before but I wasn’t really able to analyse much else.

I don't feel like I was in hospital for very long, but that's probably because I slept as much.
It didn’t feel like I was in hospital for very long, but that’s probably because I slept so much.

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My hair was crazy because I wasn’t allowed to brush it as I had an injury to my head. I had to wear a neck brace as 2 vertebra in my neck had become compressed so I needed more support. But I hated it. I found it hot and uncomfortable and kept taking it off.

Fatigue was dictating my time. I was never aawke of long at a time.
Fatigue was dictating my time. I was never awake of long at a time.
My first steps after being bed bound for 6 days.
My first steps after being bed bound for 6 days.

I had to be retrained how to walk. Initially I could barely move my right foot and had “foot drop” caused by nerve damage. But as that returned the ongoing problem was my lack of strength and coordination in my left. The physiotherapists were very patient with me but at the same time encouraged me to do more than I initially wanted too.

They knew my muscles needed to relearn how to behave and so I had to push myself.

Once home I embraced the challenge of dealling with my hair that ahdn't been brushed, let alone washed, for 10 days.
Once home I embraced the challenge of dealing with my hair that hadn’t been brushed, let alone washed, for 10 days.

I was repulsed by the smell of my own hair. With lots of dried blood in it it was revolting. So after not being allowed to tackle it to give my laceration a chance to heal, I was itching to give it a go.

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James had to help me wash as I was too weak and unsteady to manage on my own. I’m not sure how long it took. But it was such a relief as James gently helped me wash and rinse my fool smelling hair.

For the first time we were really able to be the size of the laceration.
For the first time we were really able to be the size of the laceration.

Part of my hair had to be shaved so the medics could deal with the laceration on my head. As I worked for a Hairdressing Academy at the time I remember worrying about what people would think. Again I clearly wasn’t really understanding the implications of my situation as my priorities were misjudged.

But more than anything I was relived to be home. Little did I know this was just the beginning…

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