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  • Writer's pictureDanny

Brain Changes Victoria Interview

I was recently invited for an interview with a Canadian non-profit organisation supporting Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) survivors.

I’m so humbled & stoked with interest from around the globe!! Below is a copy of my interview…

Brain Changes Vic (B.C.): Can you share a little bit about your injury? (E.g. type of TBI, when it happened)

Me: My name is Danny and I’m 46 years old, a husband & father of 8 year old twins. In 2019/ 20 I survived multiple strokes due to an undiagnosed adrenal gland tumour called a Pheochromocytoma. I had my first stroke whilst surfing, then as I was awaiting further tests I collapsed at home and suffered a violent seizure that broke & dislocated my shoulder and almost killed me.

I was transferred to a specialist hospital in Oxford UK, for 2x days of surgery and 10x days in an Intensive Care Unit. My brain injuries occurred in my occipital lobe and are now mainly only noticeable in my cognitive functions. I have also lost some peripheral vision and my surgeries have reduced my range of movement.

B.C.: What has been the most helpful thing in your recovery?

Me: Sharing and listening with other brain injury survivors. I attend local stroke community groups and have discovered every survivor has a unique story and recovery path. My love of the outdoors has encouraged me to start & share my own project to help other survivors and families affected by a brain injury.

B.C.: This May, you will be doing the “Coastal Challenge”, can you tell us about the challenge, and why you are doing it?

Me: My “Coastal Challenge” has developed through a love of surfing and outdoor activity. During my recovery I felt lost & confused, and it was during visits to our local beach that I found hope. It was during these family beach sessions that I witnessed we reconnected as a family and also that my physical & mental well-being improved hugely.

I will be running/ walking 65 miles over 3x consecutive days along the South West coastal footpath here in UK, to promote life after a brain injury. The money raised via sponsorship will go to fund a project that I am creating to assist other brain injury survivors and their families/ loved ones to enjoy an activity at the beach.

It’s simple really… the challenge raises awareness, and in doing so I help others! I created Stoked Stroke Survivors & Supporters with a website to promote positivity.

B.C.: Do you have any mottos or words of wisdom that inspire you?

Me: “Find your new potential” is a firm favourite of mine! Accepting the life changing effects of a brain injury is not a quick or easy task for the survivor or their loved ones… I needed and sought professional counselling and support. I am still finding out new ways of adapting my new normal, so that I can achieve the goals I want to achieve.

I read recently a famous British surfer Ted Deerhurst once said “To gain, one has to be willing to give”. I intend to surf this ripple of positive energy and change a negative experience into something better for others.

It’s an incredible journey so far, and not one I was ready for or expecting, but I’m grateful for each day and I’m keen to find where my “new potential” will take me.

Thank you for promoting and sharing the experiences of others. My project is done in my spare time and is a place for me share my story. I’m so grateful to the many individuals and communities across the world who inspire others!!

Stay stoked, Danny 🤙



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