b'CAREGIVER CORNERQ &AFEATURING BOB MILLSAPDONNA ODONNELL FIGURSKIBIAAZ was fortunate to be able to pick the brains of two experienced caregivers about how their lives changed after their loved ones brain injuries, how they handle their current caregiving roles and responsibilities, and their advice about self-care for caregiversBob Millsapis the caregiver for his wife Shelly Millsap, whose traumatic brain injury (TBI) was the result of a freak accident when a fermenting homemade ginger ale in the kitchen sink essen-tially became a ticking time bomb and exploded at the exact moment Shelly walked past it. The blast knocked her to the floor, unconscious, and in the following weeks, her life changed completely. Besides having to completely relearn how to walk and talk again, Shellys long and short-term memory were both affected, her mapping skills no longer exist, and she is no longer able to handle multiple tasks simultaneously like she once could. The biggest long-lasting ramification, though, has been the PTSD that Bob says keeps her brain in constant panic mode. It can take her days to recover from a single traumatic trigger. Between her struggles with spatial orientation and PTSD, Shelly is no longer able to drive much outside the corner of the Valley where she and Bob reside.Donna ODonnell Figurskiis her husband Davids caregiver. His TBI oc-curred in 2005 while he was doing his daily Tai Chi and strengthening ex-ercises. On January 13th, he decided to do 13 chin-ups instead of his typical 12, resulting in a subarachnoid hemorrhage (brain bleed). David underwent three brain surgeries in less than two weeksone for his hemorrhage, an-other for an aneurysm, and the final one for an arteriovenous malformation. His odds were so poor, his first surgeon gave him only a one-in-six-hundred chance of surviving. Fortunately, David was able to beat the odds each time. However, his multiple surgeries left him in a more dependent state, and he had to learn basic life skills, such as speaking, dressing, eating, etc., from scratch. He still has issues with blurry, tilted, and double vision. For years, he was unable to walk unassisted, and even now struggles with balance issues. Donna often refers to herself as Davids seeing eye wife, as he must hold onto her for balance when walking on surfaces like grass, gravel, or sand, or when there are dips or obstructions in the sidewalk.8The Noggin | 2020vol 5issue 2'