When Lydia was feeling very low, she started drinking heavily and taking drugs. In 2019, she took an overdose which left her with a brain injury. Here, as part of the #ThroughOurEyes campaign, Lydia talks about how our support services gave her back her independence.
“Before my brain injury, I led quite a chaotic lifestyle. I was struggling with my mood and took drugs and drank a lot. I took an overdose, which caused my brain injury. When I first went to Daniel Yorath House, I needed help with washing, dressing and eating. I struggled to remember things.
The biggest difficulty was with my vision as I couldn’t see things the same way I did before. This had a massive impact on my life. I know now I will need support to do a lot of things, but I do feel I will be able to adapt.
In occupational therapy, I relearned how to wash and dress myself and now I can do this independently. I also worked with a psychologist to learn how to manage my emotions and adapt to the difficulties I have.
A speech and language therapist helped me to talk more clearly and find my words more easily. I also tried to learn some ways to help my memory, such as using my smart speaker.
I was in the main rehabilitation centre before moving into my own flat at the transitional living unit. This was challenging for me, but I got used to the new environment and had help within easy reach. I also had home leave in preparation for my discharge.
The Covid-19 pandemic made things tricky as I could not see friends and family as much. I often felt low because I thought I was missing out. But staff understood my feelings and helped to raise my morale.
How rehabilitation helped
I can do things with my hair again and do my make up. I am also working on my general fitness and health.
I am more confident in myself than when I first went to Daniel Yorath House. All the things I learned were really valuable to me. Now I will be working with community therapists at home to improve my fitness and get out into the community.”