Back Up impact report 2020: Lorraine’s story

Lorraine with her son Christopher who we supported after spinal cord injury. read our impact report to hear their story

We spoke to Lorraine as part of our 2020 impact report. Discover how we supported her as the mother of someone with a spinal cord injury.

My life changed on its head earlier this year. My son, Christopher, was driving home when a pick up truck crashed into him head on. As a mother you have the natural instinct to protect and all I wanted was something to be done to ease Christopher’s pain. Christopher was in ICU for eight weeks and was unable to do much rehabilitation until after this period.

What made it more difficult was that with the Covid-19 pandemic we were unable to visit him and so relied on FaceTime offer our support. This has definitely been the hardest part of his injury journey so far – not being able to be with him from the very beginning.

There are no real words to describe how the injury has impacted everyone’s lives. The injury itself was a devastation, and it has changed our family’s entire priorities, personalities and our dynamic. However, this has also been a positive experience – we are more supportive of each other, rally around each other and if possible, have bonded even more as a family.

As a parent you are forever at the top of the pyramid – you are always there to support others, sometimes to the detriment of yourself. I knew I needed the right support to help my family. I was doing a google search and came across Back Up. I called the team not sure what support I needed, but they took the time listen and suggested family mentoring.

I found the entire process refreshing. My mentor helped me – was reassuring with problems, mentioning that there would be difficult times ahead but a full life can still be lived. From our discussions I now recognise that Christopher can still have goals, but they are just going to be different than initially thought and that’s ok. It has taken time to adjust, and we are still at the beginning of the journey, but mentoring has given me the confidence to speak up and sort out any problems we may have ahead so that Christopher gets the right support.

The personal value from Back Up and the human spirit shown through the empathy and understanding of being affected by spinal cord injury is shown straight away from the charity. I know it will be ok moving forward because Back Up are there to support whenever needed.

Read the rest of our impact report stories here and discover how we transform lives affected by spinal cord injury.