Deb Brandon: Living in Radiant Color

Beyond Brain Injury


February 12, 2013

I study the menu. I don’t know where to begin. Should I start at the top? What about the middle? Or the bottom? And then there’s the next page…I need help. Maybe Cindy… It doesn’t occur to me to seek help from Deb R. and Judy. They know my story, but they have not seen … Read more

Milk Run II

February 12, 2013

“You should tell the story about how you can’t buy milk.”I had no idea what Joyce was talking about. Of course I can buy milk. “You know-when I have to rescue you?” Joyce chuckled. “I can see you twenty years from now, wondering if you’ll ever be able to buy milk.” I’m not walking out … Read more

Ancient History–June 2007

January 24, 2013

The receptionist sounded so cheerful. “If you like, we can schedule you for surgery right now.”I gulped. “Ummm… sure.” I was on the phone to Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix, Arizona. It hadn’t occurred to me that I’d be looking at dates for the surgeries; I’d only phoned in order to set up an appointment … Read more


January 12, 2013

It’s just something you do, without thinking, without giving it a name. Then later, when someone praises you for it, you shrug. “I was just doing a mitzvah.” “Bar mitzvah” is commonly thought of as Jewish coming of age ceremony, celebrated when a boy turns thirteen. However, the deeper meaning behind the celebration is that … Read more

The People

November 17, 2012

When I first heard the latest news about what’s going on in Israel, I was focused on my family in Israel, my friends, my people. On my timeline, I shared a poster depicting kids living in shelters for fear of the rockets launched by Hamas. I also shared a poster about Israel’s right to defend … Read more


October 18, 2012

I used to worry when the kids went on sleepovers—what if they had an asthma attack? I used to be anxious when Sarah crossed the busy road on her way to the convenience store. I used to be afraid when Daniel got rides from older friends.Now, I worry whenever the phone rings and I hear … Read more

No Butt

September 26, 2012

I hiked up my pants. “No matter how tightly I cinch my belt, no matter what shape pants I wear, they keep falling down.”Joyce chuckled. “That’s because you have no butt.”I used to have a butt, a nice, rounded, firm butt.During the first year after the surgeries, I lost a lot of weight and with … Read more

Risk Management

September 25, 2012

I awake into pain. My body is heavy with it, my legs, my arms, my head, my eyelids. Pain meds? I struggle to open my eyes, to lift my arm. The combination of weariness and crushing pain, weighs my body down, paralyzing me. I give up, and fall back asleep.I woke up several times. Each … Read more

Spatial Awareness

August 12, 2012

I’m afraid to move.There’s nothing out there for me, nothing to hold me in place, nothing to support me. I cannot give myself up to the nothingness. “Here, I put the chair right behind you. Just sit down.” How can I possibly sit down? I will fall, forever. I ponder my feet again. Dare I … Read more


July 25, 2012

Today, I experienced such callous behavior that I came very close to losing my faith in humanity. Only five people out tens of thousands came to my aid when I was in need. One of the neurological deficits I have sustained since my brain injury is referred to as stationary ataxia—when I am standing in … Read more