A Cell Phone Which Became a Lifeline to the Outside World

Joyce Hoffman

I’m taking a break from talking directly about strokes and other TBIs to discussing something related. We take for granted credit cards and Kleenex if we’re going out–but what about the extraordinary cell phone, especially for stroke and other TBI survivors.

The cell phone, that little piece of plastic wonder, has become my lifeline for things like: 

  • Has my aide been delayed because it’s 12 noon and I expected her by 11?
  • Where is my needed medical stuff because it’s Wednesday and it was supposed to arrive Monday? 
  • When is the PCP appointment again?

We have become a nation of “right now immediacy.” The words “text” and “PM” and the sophisticated emojis weren’t in our vernacular around 20 years ago. Now they are, the words and symbols have come to mean so much to most people. All the young, yes! Middle age? It depends. All the elders, not so much.

Before we go any further, let me give you a quick rundown in order on cell phones. In the beginning, there were these around : 

Around the 70s
and then
Still, though some with a shorter antenna
Slightly improved
More improved
Now we’re talkin’
Flip phone now
Flip phone–larger screen
Smug Jobs, rightfully so
Now, we’re back to the flip phones again. What goes around, comes around, I guess.
All I want  the cell phone to do is give me messages, write messages, make and receive calls (and take a picture once in a while of my bruised and battered face to remind me not to do THAT again), and look up things that few people know.
Do you have the order yet? Cell phone first, then credit cards, Kleenex and whatever else you need. So is a cell phone a lifeline? You’re darn right it is, at least to me!

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