Header image - Deb Brandon: Living in Radiant Color

Beyond Brain Injury

Sweating the Surreal Stuff

October 12, 2019
Red high heels

Why red carpet? Why not blue or purple? And how on Earth does one walk down it? Certainly not stride, unless shod in combat boots. What about meander? Or stroll? Sashay? Sashay sounds good. And what should I wear? A suit? A tuxedo? Somehow that doesn’t feel right. Certainly not a dress. I don’t own … Read more

Enoughness

September 30, 2019
Speed limit 5 road sign

I read the first sentence: “An island is 2 miles due north of its closest point along a straight shoreline.” Oh God! What the hell does that mean? “Closest point along…blah blah blah” There was no way I could figure this out. About to panic, I took adeep breath. What if I drew a picture? … Read more

First Last

September 16, 2019
image of countdown timer

This past summer was filled with lasts. It was my last stint as director of our REU (Research Experience for Undergraduates). I ran my last TA (Teaching Assistant) training workshop. The summer was my last summer as a college professor. And today was my last first day of an academic year.

Truer colors

July 30, 2019

I had trouble putting my finger on it—something wasn’t right. Something had changed. Certainly not the website, but me—I had changed. I scrutinized my home page—it was too quiet. Though neurological fatigue continued to plague me, it wasn’t as debilitating as in the earlier days of my recovery. In addition, I was less prone to … Read more

Clutter

July 11, 2019

It was so clean, uncluttered, easy to read, to navigate, and it was quiet. It was just right. It was me. I loved it… at first. Actually, I loved it for the first… how long? The first year? When my second book, Threads Around the World: From Arabian Weaving to Batik in Zimbabwe, was about … Read more

Restoring Order

June 27, 2019

My friend Susan pointed her out. “There she is. The woman I told you about. The one with the brain injury.” Susan was pointing at an unremarkable looking woman. A bit on the skinny side, straight brown hair, sitting alone at a table, all her attention on writing in a small notebook. In my previous … Read more

Incorrigible

May 28, 2019

Sometimes I forget my limitations. Often I ignore them, on purpose. In particular, when it comes to travel, though I do make some concessions to the bloody brain—I am willing to take my chances. I knew the trip was was going to be a challenge. I took it anyway. The flight out of Pittsburgh was … Read more

Spring Writing

May 8, 2019
photo of tulip

I feel lost. I know what I want to write about. I’ve written bits and pieces. But it won’t gel. I’ve tried stepping back to take a break, to gain a better perspective. What is this story about? Normally, all it takes is a shower. I stand under the shower head, water streaming down my … Read more

Story Strong

April 18, 2019

A student came to my office, looked around my office. As he crossed the threshold, his step faltered. I turned to see what had caused his reaction—he was staring at my calendar, a Jewish calendar with a big Star of David emblazoned on it. Curious, I scrutinized him, searching for a clue that would explain … Read more

Hands Up

March 24, 2019

Shoes off. Coat and hoodie in the bin. Wait. My belt—I whip it off, roll it up, and tuck it under the coat. I check my pockets. Oh yes, liquids—I pull the ziploc bag out of my backpack. I think I’ve got it all. Oops, the iPad. I sigh as I reach over to get … Read more