My Dad Got Hurt: What Can I Do?
Life does not always go the way we would like it to and sometimes certain events will drastically change the course of our lives and the way we live in the future. The National Academy of Neuropsychology Foundation presents this true to life book about what happens when a member of a family, namely the father is deployed, fights for his country and get hurt. Deciding to share thoughtful lessons with families with children to learn about what happens when a parent becomes brain injured is at the heart of this book. The lessons learned will help everyone not just children understand what can happen when a parent, son, daughter or friend become victim to an attack while serving their country. It will also help those who have been in car accidents and have been left with some type of brain injury or anyone with drastic memory loss.
Dr. Johnson is our narrator and the person who invites reader to learn more about her job as a neuropsychologist and the Smith family the stars of our book. The Smith family has two parents, two children and a dog. They live on a military base and Dad, Jackson, Isabella and their mom has fun playing, enjoying dinner and talking with each other. They are a close-knit family just check out the colorful outdoor picture while they play and mom is barbequing.
Everyone on the base that is in the military wears a uniform to work but when their dad had a special green bag that he was carrying one day they knew things were about to change. He was going away for six months deployed to another country to fight.
Talking to him on Skype was great but when he came home things were not the same. His Humvee was in a serious accident leaving him injured and in the hospital for a long time. Excited that he was coming home the harsh reality of how he changed would come to light. Everyone was thrilled that he was home so why didn’t he look right? Why so angry and irate? No longer wanting to play catch or even focused on what his son asked he was moody, unhappy and even yelled at their mom but why? What caused this? When his son’s team lost their game to the other side what he said really hurt and would stick with his son all day? Why would he put the team down and how did meeting Dr. Johnson help?
On pages 18-19 she explains the science behind brain injuries and the parts of the brain that are affected like your emotions or personality as you the reader can tell from the changes in Mr. Smith. She continues to explain that when our brains are hurt or injured you cannot see the bruises or cuts because the wounds are inside. He gets angry and is hurtful and the children feel upset and don’t quite understand why their father responds in an angry manner most of the time. So, she brought something to help the children and their mother deal with this. A special chart that everyone can use even if their parent does not have a brain injury but any other type of mental illness or problem. So, keep these 7 things in mind:
I didn’t cause it.
I can’t control it.
I Can’t cure it
I can take care of myself
By communicating my feelings
By making good choices and
By celebrating myself.
Fantastic chart that can be used in difficult situations where children or even adults feel to blame for the behavior of someone else that they did not cause and the other person cannot handle or control without help.
So, make a chart, put it up where you can see it and use it whenever you need to remind yourself about the 7C’s. Illustrated by Valerie Mazzoli and written with Brunella Costagliola this is a helpful resource for hospital nurses to help families of military men or women, children and even teachers that want to help children embrace the fact that the military is special and the people that come home need our love and support.
Fran Lewis: Just reviews/MJ magazine