SHARE YOUR STORY
Thank you for considering writing YOUR story for the PINK concussions book and/or this website. We began a writing group in November 2016, with 25 women, girls and parents/caregivers.
As of March 2017, we do have a few chapters still open for contributions in the upcoming book, and the rest of the stories will be published on this website.
If you haven't ever written about your brain injury story before, here is a three week self-paced guide, we created for you.
These are only suggestions to help you. If another method works for you, feel free to do what is right for you. And a huge thanks and credit to Kimberly Archie for allowing us to copy her original structure for writing a brain injury story.
Things to Remember (Re-read this section often)
- This is a process and you won't have a chapter in one day; and you don't need to know the end or beginning right now.
- It can be overwhelming sometimes to write about one’s own life for good reason, but it will help if you can go one step at a time and try not over burden yourself.
- Try to let go some and just follow the process.
- Give yourself space to brain storm and write ideas, paragraphs and one liners at first and allow it to weave together as it goes.
- You will write more than you need to get all your ideas out; and in the editing process with editors, your piece will get refined.
Day 1 - Have Your Very Own Brain Storm Session
List your Thoughts:
Sit in a quiet place with a bottle of water and chocolate or food of choice. Get comfortable and then begin.
Think about your brain injury and write down every thought you have that easily comes to mind about your injury.
- Your symptoms,
- Things you missed out on due to injury
- Names of people who helped you
- Names of those who did not understand
- Your challenges and successes
- Your coping devices
- A few words about how you felt before the injury, and a few words how you feel now.
Just write for 1-2 pages.
Don't write a lot, but rather just short, quick notes. Some might only be a few words.
Write a timeline from birth to now.
Attached below is an example to help you.
This woman had a brain injury as a child so her timeline focuses on the years after her injury.
If your injury was recent, your timeline might be divided into months since the accident.
Over the next few days, pick your 5 "easiest to write about" topics from your brain storming.
Take one topic each day and write as much as you can about the topic for at least 200 words.
- Don't worry if it sounds perfect or what order, just write.
- Free writing = no rules, no worries about grammar or flow. Just write.
- Don't skip too many days as writing something each day really is helpful for most people.
Remember: you are not required to follow this guidelines. If you feel comfortable going out on your own and finish with 3,000-5,000 words for the editing process it is fine.
Answer of each of the following questions in around 200 words.
Day 8 - Make a list of ten things you are grateful for in your life, and write about three of them.
Day 9 - Why are you participating in concussion/PCS education and awareness?
Day 10 - Describe how you think concussion/PCS changed you.
Day 11 - What did you learn about concussion/PCS after the fact that you wish you knew sooner?
Day 12 - Who has been the greatest support for you? How did they support you? What were ways they helped or slowed your recovery over your journey?
Day 13 - What has been the most painful part of having a brain injury, concussion, or PCS? Who has let you down and not given you the support you need?
Day 14 - What has been a joy-benefit-a positive outcome of having a brain injury? Think hard! Have you spend time with a family member, spent time with a pet, learned about yourself, have more compassion, etc?
Day 15 - If you could condense all you know into three sentences to send to another woman who suffers from brain injury, what message would you send her?
Day 16 - What would you have done differently if you could start over again - right after the injury?
Day 17 - What are some of the ways you have found relief, joy, friendship, pleasure in the time you suffer or suffered with brain injury?
Day 18 - What would you tell a mom/spouse/child who thinks their loved one has a concussion & exhibits symptoms? What advice would you give to others - family, friends, doctors, employers or teachers to help someone with a brain injury?
Day 19 - What has been the worse part about writing your chapter?
Day 20 - What has been the best part about writing your chapter?
Day 21 - What have you learned about yourself or your injury or life in writing this chapter?
Last step: Submit your story to Katherine@PINKconcussions.com with the subject line: "My Story."
This is your story. You own it. You can ask us to take it off the site at any time. If you liked the process, maybe you want to write your own book?