b'How Brain Injury Survivor Mike Tucker Utilized His Strengths to Drive His Own RecoveryFor almost 35 years, Mike Tucker had been calling the shots. As foreman for Ralph Wilkens, a Phoenix-based construction company, he oversaw crews in the installation of overhead doors,Mike makes magic skylights, and hangar doors. He loved everythingin the kitchen at Neuro RehabCareabout it, especially the camaraderie with his team.In September 2019, he was on a job, securing back guidesFortunately, two Neuro RehabCare therapists, Speech-Lan-for a large door. He needed to get an overview, and sinceguage Pathologist Jessica Lasky, MS, CCC-SLP, and Certi-there were no electric Genie Scissor Lifts available, hefied Occupational Therapist Assistant Haylee Rollins, climbed a 14-foot ladder, not an unusual occurrence. HeCOTA, know a lot about traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) reached the top, and then everything went black. and post-traumatic stress, like the kind experienced after Weeks later, he awoke in a hospital to learn he had fallenaccidents such as Mikes. For Lasky, her personal mission and been placed into an induced coma. He had sustainedand goal for those she works with is straightforward: We facial fractures and injury to his frontal lobe. Mike refusedneed to get patients back to their prior levels, no matter to believe any of it had happened until he saw the pictureswhat it takes.taken at the site. As therapists, Lasky and Rollins have the freedom to Not only was the previous month a blank, but he soontailor therapy regimes to fit a patients needs, which they found out he had to relearn to do just about everything,accomplish in a comfortable home-like environment, easing from walking to swallowing. the transition for when patients return to their homes. With Fundamental to Mike finding the right resources was theMike, they had an enthusiastic partner.Brain Injury Alliance of Arizona. Executive Director CarrieBefore the accident, he had been a fully independent Collins-Fadell was thrilled that her team could help a fellowmember of society, so they encouraged maximum participa-Michigan transplant. She said the key to successful recoverytion on his part, with Mike making choices about his daily is the right resource at the right time during recovery. Everyschedule and activities. Jessica Nathan, Program Director brain injury and recovery path is unique, she reminded.of Neuro RehabCare, shared that, as the days and weeks Mike told us he had always been self-sufficient, so wepassed, we noticed Mike was showing signs of his pre-injury helped him find a post-op program that utilized person-cen- self. He seemed to crave and thrive under structure and do tered planning that required Mike to play an integral rolevery well at working hard independently and with thera-in his recovery by incorporating his passions and goals inpists. Due to Mikes dedication, the Neuro RehabCare staff his own treatment plan. designed a homework program of sorts for Mike to follow After several weeks of acute care, Mike came to Neuroin between his therapy sessions. We noticed this approach RehabCare in Scottsdale, Arizona, where a special therapycapitalized on his strong work ethic, encouraged initiation, team developed a unique plan to help this good-naturedand allowed a sense of mastery and independence, Nathan Detroit native regain his life. added. Daily, we saw Mike following his therapy homework 12 The Noggin | 2020vol 5issue 2'