Posted on February 27, 2012 · Posted in TBI Voices
This entry is part 21 of 32 in the series Kelly

Voc Rehab After TBI Recovery Helped

In our previous part, Kelly told us about the process and training with the Voc rehab after TBI involved in getting her driving rights restored, through the Tennessee Rehabilitation Center.  She continues on telling about the role this center played for her and the voc rehab after TBI she received:

They were supposed to help me find employment too, but they didn’t.  And then they says, well if you, if you find your own employment we will consider graduating you as you completed the program.  So one day my trustee little car, in my mom’s car I was driving around and I applied for a job at Wal‑Mart.

Voc rehab after TBI Helps Kelly to Drive and Get a Job

So you had gotten your driver’s license?

Got my driver’s license, got my job and had the job for more than three months.  So then, the rehabilitation center, TRC, then graduated me.

Is that the first job you’ve had after you got hurt and after Voc rehab after TBI?

That was the first job, but I have a multitude since then.

I worked at Wal-Mart first.

What did you do at Wal-Mart?

Oh, I’m sorry, I just, I just totally stepped out of bounds.  I worked at Shoney’s first.  So I went to get the job first at Shoney’s.

Worked there as a door greeter.  And then the manager promised me a promotion or a raise for doing such good work but then he, he failed to follow through.  So then I went to work for, I went and got a job at Wal-Mart.

What were you doing at Wal-Mart?

At Wal-Mart I was a cashier and a zoner person.  So I would have to check people out at the register and I would help rezone or clean up different areas.  If things got dropped on the floor or not shelved properly, then I would go up and, go back and pick them up and reshelf them properly.

At some point, before we go off the driver’s license issue, what was it that they did in this Voc rehab after TBI that helped you be able to drive again?

They had an occupational therapist. I was like a student driver and I had a special therapist drive with me and I pointed out road signs, what they meant and I would give her in advance of what was going to happen and what I was planning on doing.  She would give me the destination where we’re going to and then I would have to tell her how I was going to get there.

Did you start out right in behind the wheel or was there like a simulator.

No, right behind the wheel.

Were you having any problems at the beginning with those things that you did have to relearn?

No sir.

Do you think you could’ve just gotten behind the wheel and driven without the training?


Did you think you did anything better as a result of having had the training?

Not really.

Next in Part Twenty Two – The Cognitive Challenges of Driving After TBI

By Attorney Gordon Johnson



About the Author

Attorney Gordon S. Johnson, Jr.
Past Chair Traumatic Brain Injury Litigation Group, American Association of Justice :: 800-992-9447