Books

Five 5-Star Reviews of Concussion Is Brain Injury: Treating the Neurons and Me!

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Amazon 5-star reviews are like gold. Amazon has very strict guidelines on who can review your book like my memoir Concussion Is Brain Injury: Treating the Neurons and Me. It’s rather confusing, but the fundamental principle of you can’t tell them what to write is one I abide by anyway because what’s the point of a review if it isn’t honest? I can’t learn from it otherwise, and people will feel sold a bill of goods if reviews aren’t honest. It’s also why I steam when people write outright lies about my books. Malice is the only motivation. Maybe it’s why I’m so fascinated by the Netflix series No Good Nick.

Anyway, I used my Patreon earnings to run a promotion through Self-Publishing Review, which reviewed my book when it came out.. They’ve cleared it with Amazon. Self-Publishing Review lists your book in their mailings, as I understand it, and you cross your fingers and hope people (a) see it, (b), read it, and (c) review it. What you don’t expect — or at least I didn’t! — is to receive five 5-star reviews. FIVE!!!! And they appear on Amazon Canada, Amazon UK, and other Amazons, too!

quirru 5-star review 7 July 2019

here she tells us all she has to pass and suffer to be able to recover herself from that brain trauma, she does this in a magnificent way because she recovered from this and make a research, even in the last part of the book she give us scientific bibliography about the concussion and everything around it.”

Her psychological healing, in my opinion, was done just by expressing her feelings and her journey for others to see that there is a light at the end of the tunnel.”

Corrie M 5-star review 23 July 2019

I have seen in my line of work that concussions are often treated as temporary problems, but it is refreshing to see an author speak about the long term effects and the havoc that a concussion can create in ones life. Very well told . . .”

Mia C. 5-star review 27 July 2019

Shireen gives hope to people who suffered the same as she did. So it is mainly aimed to those who had a concussion.
I liked this reading I found it to be really interesting and informative. I would certainly recommend reading this.”

astrofan 5-star review 5 Aug 2019

in the real world outside of the research laboratory, you sometimes have to be the “Karen” in order for people to take your real and valid problems seriously. Overall, a very good read.”

Books

Second Five-Star Amazon Review of Concussion Is Brain Injury: Treating the Neurons and Me!

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I was over the moon when I received my first five-star book review for Concussion Is Brain Injury: Treating the Neurons and Me. But my second . . .

My brain is struggling to process . . .

The title — what I was hoping to achieve . . .

Can’t believe I did it!

My goal to create two books in one, which readers embrace.

Even though this book might seem like a scientific one, Shireen Jeejeebhoy manages to tell us her story about recovering after serious physical and psychological trauma. (Mariuca Asavoaie, 22 July 2019)

In gratitude for this moment!

Brain Power

I Read a Whole Chapter With Comprehension After Concussion

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Surreal.

I read an entire chapter, start to finish, using Lindamood-Bell visualizing and verbalizing method. First time since my brain injury. OMG!

I got to the point of being able to read an entire chapter of The Screwtape Letters about 2 months ago but not in one go. Instead, I read for 5 minutes at a time or paragraph by paragraph or a page at a time. I finally got up to reading  chapter 1.5 pages by 1.5 pages on July 1, 2019. But I didn’t progress to reading 2 pages until July 20th. That was just one page off from reading an entire chapter in one go.

What I mean by one go is: Start reading the text, create concept imagery as I read, redo concept imagery if I’m “seeing” text in my head instead of a still image or mini movie, keep going like that until I get to the final word of the chapter, not pausing once.

Then do word summary for entire chapter: tell myself out loud what I just read by seeing the imagery in my mind and recall it from the images.

Then describe out loud to myself the main idea. I always stumble on this one. Today, I remembered the three-key-points method on my second try and got it!

Then ask myself: what do you conclude, infer, predict? Those questions, as always, help me see ideas or inferences I hadn’t seen when creating imagery and summarizing.

Fucking amazing. Yeah, it’s a short chapter. Yeah, it’s taken me till Chapter 23 of the third book I’ve read since I relearnt to read, to accomplish this. But like all the chapters of The Screwtape Letters, it’s dense with ideas, visuals, sounds, tastes, smells and, in this chapter, long strings of adjectives — I had to create an image for each adjective to help me remember what Screwtape thinks of this latest person in the patient’s life.

Lindamood-Bell instructed me that when I advance to the next level — whether from sentence to sentence by sentence or from paragraph by paragraph to page by page — I would not recall 100 percent. Sixty would be awesome. So during the word summary, having to check back to the text three times to remind myself of details or an entire argument and see imagery pop back up into consciousness so that I could close the book and recall it in word summary, didn’t faze me.

I can’t believe that with my brain injury, the huge setback from the Shingrix vaccine, and current rise of major stress, I finally read with comprehension from start to finish, without loss of focus, one whole chapter. Wow. Sweet.

And the professionals who specialize in brain injury who told me I had to accept I couldn’t read anymore and had to use strategies to make do with language going in and immediately exiting my memory and comprehension, were wrong wrong wrong. That’s why I wrote Concussion Is Brain Injury: Treating the Neurons and Me and am updating its companion web pages with my newly acquired knowledge on how to restore reading. Medical professionals are sweet people, but they’re WRONG, and you need to stop listening to them, go out, and find a way to get your book reading back — because you deserve to feel this awesomeness.

Concussion is Brain Injury

First Amazon Review For Concussion Book and It’s Five Stars!

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I browsed over to my Amazon page for Concussion Is Brain Injury: Treating the Neurons and Me (Revised Edition) to link it for a tweet or something and was about to close it after copying the link when my brain finally registered what my eyes were seeing: stars!

Stars?!

Holy —-, stars! Five of them!!

I got real confused. I shouldn’t have. After all, I’d begun a marketing promo to try and sell copies and hopefully get a review since people who’d read it had reviewed it in paper notes or to me personally. I really liked the paper notes — I’d read and reread them and there’s something to be said for their tangibility! — but they don’t let anyone know that maybe my book is worth reading like online reviews do.

I scrolled down and read. I found it hard to breathe and blinked hard. I’m so grateful for the reviewer taking the time to read my book and writing a good review — good because they understood what I was trying to achieve and wrote more than a couple of sentences. The word gratitude is inadequate.

Read 1 Books Reviews – Amazon.com
— Read on www.amazon.com/Concussion-Brain-Injury-Treating-Neurons-ebook/dp/B075XJK767/ref=mp_s_a_1_1

Concussion is Brain Injury

Camp NaNoWriMo?

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Ever since my CCAC therapist left, the one provided by community care under medicare, at about the same time my parents left the city, I haven’t succeeded at Camp NaNoWriMo. It was difficult as it was. I worked hard to ramp up to doing both Camps in April and July, in addition to NaNoWriMo in November, and could only ramp up because of health care and parental support. In fact, my therapist believed so much in my ability to write three books a year, that her belief in me rose me up over fatigue, my brain-injury related reading and organizational problems, and other issues that made writing every day quite exhausting. When you believe in a person and act out that belief, you empower them. No one else has come close to what she did for me because she initiated action based on her belief.

When therapist and parents left, my brain-injury issues plus PTSD suddenly exploding blocked me from starting or, if I managed to start, finishing Camp NaNoWriMo.

That may sound like a cop out, but cognitive work, being productive, initiating, deciding things, being organized, are complex brain functions. We don’t think about them as adults because the brain learns and makes automatic these functions as we grow up over 21 years or so. Going back to year one after concussion is a bit disheartening and needs all-in support and treatments to get back to adult automaticity. Trauma, bad memories, flash up a big stop sign to it all, as well.

I’m rambling.

I think I’m going to try Camp NaNoWriMo again. Ever since I fired him then had a talk with and rehired him, my neurodoc has become actively supportive, helping me with my reading practice. He’s also the only one to occasionally prod me to write an article for Psychology Today. This past November, for the first time, he took my NaNoWriMo writing month seriously. Previously he thought it was just some trivial thing that if I didn’t succeed in writing during it, I could write another time, and I was just being rigid minded if I got upset about being unable to write during NaNoWriMo because of exhaustion and/or PTSD. He’s now understood it’s a critical filling in of cognitions my brain injury took from me. The only substitute for NaNoWriMo are humans who sit with me several times a week, like during the ten weeks medicare granted me help to write Concussion Is Brain Injury: Treating the Neurons and Me.

My neurodoc said he could help me with sticking to Camp. I have no great expectations. I’m setting the bar low and a goal for something I really need to do: update the pages tied to the Learnings chapters of my concussion book. I’ve learnt a few new things since I published it, especially in reading, as regular readers would know!

I’ve left signing up almost to the last minute. I haven’t yet identified all the web pages I need to update or figured out a schedule. This kind of prep is what my CCAC therapist would get me to do. Don’t just think about it – write it down in my calendar, outline it on my iPad, set up files on my computer. And sign up!

Events

At The BIST Expressive Art Show

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The Brain Injury Society of Toronto holds an annual Expressive Art Show every Spring. This year it’s at Artscape Youngplace at 180 Shaw St. And I’m pleased to announce that I’ll be there with my book Concussion Is Brain Injury: Treating the Neurons and Me!

“the intricate details of the author’s experience are riveting and enlightening.” Kirkus Reviews

“Jeejeebhoy’s tale is highly emotional…uplifting, while giving a realistic view of recovery.” Self-Publishing Review

BIST Expressive Art Show May 21 to 25th poster 180 Shaw StreetThe BIST Expressive Art Show launches on Tuesday, May 21, 4:00 to 7:00 pm with paintings, illustrations, crafts, sculptures, and copies of my book available for sale at a deep discount ($20) and for personal autographing. I’ll also be doing a brief reading at 5:00 pm.

This year, I will also have one of my artworks — a photographic collage — on display. I’ve always been impressed with the evocativeness and beauty of many of the art pieces. I hope you will check out the show and the many artists there! And please come say Hi!!

Brain Power

Last Reading Session with Lindamood-Bell

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It’s over! Hard to believe that it was only four months ago, I was starting to learn how to visualize and verbalize and on my way to regaining my reading comprehension. And now it’s over. I plunged in with Lindamood-Bell on the basis of their decades of experience, their thorough reading assessment, my brain Clinic Director’s endorsement. Even though they were fully confident they could give me back my reading, I was uncertain. After eighteen years of not much progress, how could I achieve reading books again in only two months?

Well, I did it. I ended the original 81 hours back in September and had five refresher sessions one week then two weeks apart. I’m still reading The Lions of Al-Rassan (on page 183 as of today, more than a third of the way through it), and I’m rereading the course material from the Philosophy of Mind course I took six years ago and did well in on the strength of my writing, my short-term memory, my intensive use of the iPad for notes and repeated calling up of word definitions (no vocabulary retention), audiovisual entrainment, and serious napping. Even so, I never acquired vocabulary. I never understood some concepts like Descartes’ extension. And I didn’t retain much of it. But now I’m reading it with comprehension. I’m acquiring vocabulary. The only thing I need to is read and work the visualizing and verbalizing process.

It was sad to say good-bye, but today, I was ready. I’ll still be checking in as checking in helps the student to retain and prevent drifting away from the process. I have to say that because I’ve been intensively writing a novel for NaNoWriMo, I have been drifting away. And some stressful events have seriously interfered with my memory of what I’d read. Having the last of the extra five free refresher sessions today gave them an opportunity to pull me back in and for me to ask for tips.

Read every day. And even if it’s only five minutes during this intensive writing period, read daily to keep the connection to creating imagery. Work the whole process if can read for 10 minutes.

Read daily.

Funny, before my brain injury, no one ever had to convince me to read daily. Not reading a book was a chore. After my brain injury, reading a book became a slog of quicksand-sucking proportion. Now reading daily is difficult yet returning me to the joy of books.

Books

NaNoWriMo and the TTC

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Seven days in, and I’ve written every day of NaNoWriMo. I haven’t been able to do this in years. Most amazing part: write, edit, fine tune, and post one chapter to Wattpad every day. Up to now, at best, I wrote one chapter daily during November. Never edited before. Too scared to even post it for public reading.

It’s rather exhilarating.

And exhausting.

My body feels run over. My voice is dropping in volume. My brain wants a time out — until I begin thinking about Louise, about having fun with this story, about how suddenly riding the TTC is fodder. The worse the slog, the better the fodder. Too bad this counterforce to TTC draining, straining, enraging will last only a month. Maybe if lots of people read it and share it, it’ll continue doing good for all those who have no choice but endure whenever they step onto the red-and-white inaccessible transit. Check it out 👇

Louise and The Men Of Transit