The Masks

Iowa

Name: Angela

City: Davenport

Brain Injury: Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

Explanation of Mask: Brown: color of my skin.  Strong, affectionate, sad because of a lost friend, strong is beautiful.

Name: Brian L.

City: Davenport

Brain Injury: Hit my head on AC and fell out of a car

Explanation of Mask: Color brown makes me feel happy when I see my wife.  Red reminds me of my wife’s makeup.  Blue because I am happy to be in America.  Basketball is my favorite past time.  People call me wicked boy.

Name: David B.

City: Davenport

Brain Injury: Frontal lobe brain injury due to a motor vehicle accident

Explanation of Mask: The color purple makes him happy.  The color blue makes him think about the highway where he had his accident.  Red makes him think of food.  Although he has a brain injury, David still thinks about his family and remembers he was once married.  David is strong, but sometimes becomes stressed because he feels like his is in jail.

Name: David T.

City: Davenport

Brain Injury:

Explanation of Mask: Yellow for the nose.  Yellow makes you feel fabulous.  Orange makes me feel good.

Name: Deborah

City: Davenport

Brain Injury:

Explanation of Mask: Means I feel happy most of the time.  I like animals, cake and sweets, feeling beautiful today.

Name: Diane L.

City: Davenport

Brain Injury:

Explanation of Mask: I feel proud!!  I feel happy about animals because I love dogs!  They are comforting!  I like to be at home making projects.  I feel smart because I have the ability to read!  I have a good heart because I am loving and I care about other people!  I believe it is a big world and there is a lot of opportunity to express myself!  I am beautiful and sweet!

Name: Heather

City: Davenport

Brain Injury: I received my brain injury in 2004 from an ATV accident in Tama, Iowa

Explanation of Mask: Black in the morning when she wakes up because she is still confused but as her morning progresses she’s red and she can think more clearly.  Heather is still Heather.  She feels the pain and depression from her brain injury but is still living.  She is all about her money.  Heather is still a person who is just as beautiful on the inside as she is on the outside!

Name: Jennifer M.

City: Davenport

Brain Injury: Closed brain injury from fall

Explanation of Mask: Yellow- “Sometimes she is happy, sometimes she is down.”  Orange- Sweet potato fries- “It’s good to eat.” brightens the day.  Blue: “When you are down and need a friend to call on.”  Pillow- “I love my sleep.”  Red Velvet Cookie- “I like my sweets.” 

Name: Kimberly M.

City: Davenport

Brain Injury:I was born with fetal alcohol syndrome

Explanation of Mask: Favorite color.  Reality check.  How I used to be and how I am today.  Healing and letting go of the past.  Fell in love, found true love.  You’ll be surprised that I’m more than my brain injury.  How smart and funny I am.  American- because I am American.  Outcast- I am in my own world.

Name: Loren

City: Davenport

Brain Injury: 

Explanation of Mask: Black stands for the people who were born with brain injury and did not have a chance to have a life.  Red is for the people who had a life, but lost it because of a head injury.  Red is the color of blood.

Name: Michael C.

City: Davenport

Brain Injury: Rubella syndrome, and cerebral palsy

Explanation of Mask: Yellow = happy mood.  Family most important, life, happy, enjoying life each day, growing, strong, loves baseball.  I’m amazing, good spirit, love people and family.  Express feelings in a good and sometimes bad way.  This is my mask, my emotions, my injury.

Name: Michelle B.

City: Davenport

Brain Injury: Fell as a child 

Explanation of Mask: Multiple colors are happy.  I smile when I am happy.  I am funny.  I am nice to people.  I use the words smile because I smile when I am happy.  I use funny because I like to laugh and I am pretty.

Name: Mike

City: Davenport

Brain Injury: –

Explanation of Mask: 

Name: Rhonda

City: Davenport

Brain Injury: Fell down the steps

Explanation of Mask: I’m happy, frustrated, pissed off, sad

Name: Rolando P.

City: Davenport

Brain Injury: Too much sodium into body at once

Explanation of Mask: I feel black every morning with my brain injury.  I love ice cream.  I love the rainbow and all the colors they make me feel good.  I love black men.  I’m not all year around.

Name: Tina

City: Davenport

Brain Injury: Born with a brain injury

Explanation of Mask: I feel beautiful.  I feel smart.  I hope to get married and have a family someday.  I was “definitely born different” but I overcame with victory.

Name: David D.

City: Davenport

Brain Injury: Right side of body crushed; Shaken Baby Syndrome

Explanation of Mask: Joker, enough said.  Well I guess also with God and frisky.

Name: Quinton G.

City: Davenport

Brain Injury: 1986 & 2011 – Motorcycle accident and brain surgery

Explanation of Mask: This mask represents my feelings of being calm, enlightened, joyous, playful, relaxed, lonely, vibrant and free – I am loved.

Name: DJ H.

City: Dewitt

Brain Injury: Went through a window, multiple brain injuries

Explanation of Mask: Went through a window, multiple brain injuries

Name: Duane F.

City: Davenport

Brain Injury: 2000- had stroke

Explanation of Mask: Something small- black and blue around eyes- my brain feels bruised and battered.  I can’t do what I used to be able to do- can’t write at all- had to re-learn how to read.

Name: Joe M.

City: Dewitt

Brain Injury: 6/9/1987- Hit broadside by a semi hauling gas

Explanation of Mask: Life since my head injury has been tough.  Sometimes I feel life isn’t worth living anymore, but I just keep on keeping on!!!

Name: Kieanna O.

City: Davenport

Brain Injury: I have an anoxic brain injury as a result of a house explosion in October 2003.  Anoxic brain injury- lack of oxygen to the brain

Explanation of Mask: This masks is about the positive change I’ve made in my life over the past 6 months

Name: Michael S.

City: Davenport

Brain Injury: Car accident in 2006

Explanation of Mask: That thunderbolt represents the actual brain injury.  The broken heart represents the loss of life I knew.  That black around the eyes represents loss of vision.  That red nose represents sticking out like a sore thumb.  Those 3 hearts represent my daughter and 2 grandchildren- something to live for.  Those cat’s eyes represent my service kitties.  Those 2 sets of angel wings represent my mom and sister.  That cross represents hope.  The star represents loneliness, but also speech trouble.  The number 4 stands for Kevin Harvick.

Name: Paul

City: Davenport

Brain Injury: Car accident and fell down stairs

Explanation of Mask: 

Name: Sarah B.

City: Bettendorf

Brain Injury: 1996- Car crash

Explanation of Mask: How I feel about myself after my BI; Happy face (positive, orange), Brick wall (stubborn, brown), Hard worker (what I need to be to do what I want, red & purple), increased frustration (yellow).  “When life hands you lemons, make lemonade” (yellow lemons, pink lemonade), glitter represents “letting my light shine”

Name: Craig

City: Akney

Brain Injury: –

Explanation of Mask: I chose black and red for my mask because it reminded me of my high school colors.  It reminded me of when things were simpler- cruiz’n and didn’t have a care in the world.

Name: Debbie

City: Akney

Brain Injury: –

Explanation of Mask: The theme for my mask was borrowed from the Braveheart movie where William Wallace is fighting the English for freedom from Ireland.  I chose this because all of us are fighting for/working towards freedom here.

Name: Erin

City: Akney

Brain Injury: Skull fracture after motorcycle accident

Explanation of Mask: I chose black and gold because I’ve lived in Iowa City my whole life, born and raised an Iowa Hawkeye.  The crack in my mask represents the skull fracture I sustained from hitting a deer on my motorcycle in September 2015.  I chose to put tears on my mask because since this accident my whole future has changed.  I put a frown on my mask because my wife has left me and this is very hard to go through.

Name: Ken

City: Akney

Brain Injury: Stroke

Explanation of Mask: A stroke causes smoke on the brain.  It’s a dare on your life.  We must fight for life.  On With Life tries to help us back to life.  To normal is the goal.  It may not work.  It’s hard not to go berserk

Name: Doug

City: Akney

Brain Injury: –

Explanation of Mask: The gray left side of my mask reflects the left side neglect and lifelessness of my left side.  The peach color of the right side shows the right side being full of life.  The jewels in the corners of the eyes represent tears of sadness and tears of pain that I’m suffering.

Name: Ben

City: Sioux City

Brain Injury: –

Explanation of Mask: I chose red because it reminds me of the Nebraska Cornhuskers, that’s why I have a big N on the forehead

Name: Brandon

City: Sioux City

Brain Injury: –

Explanation of Mask: I like the color red.  Blue is the state color.

Name: Colin E.

City: Sioux City

Brain Injury: –

Explanation of Mask: The green represents my life before my brain injury- I was in the service, was married, and I have a daughter.  The red represents the sadness and loss of my freedom after my brain injury.

Name: Dan

City: Sioux City

Brain Injury: –

Explanation of Mask: I chose orange and black because those are my school colors.

Name: Dillon W.

City: Sioux City

Brain Injury: –

Explanation of Mask: The blue is me and the gold is how many placements I have been in.  The green is sadness and I have a lot of sadness.  The orange is happiness and I have a lot happiness in this placement.  OU is the best place I have been in and I have been in alot.  

Name: Hunter

City: Sioux City

Brain Injury: –

Explanation of Mask: I chose to paint my mask green and blue because they are my favorite colors.  Green because I love money.  All the colors remind me of Bob Marley.

Name: Judy

City: Sioux City

Brain Injury: –

Explanation of Mask: I chose to paint my mask with my favorite colors.  It is crying because that is how I feel when I can’t communicate my feelings.  

Name: Keagan

City: Sioux City

Brain Injury: –

Explanation of Mask: The reason why I chose red and yellow is because they symbolize me.  Red symbolizes peace.  Yellow symbolizes happiness.  Living with others is a blessing because I want to teach people with the same brain injury as me that there is more to life then feeling bad about yourself.

Name: Lee

City: Sioux City

Brain Injury: –

Explanation of Mask: I like the colors blue and green because they are bright and remind me of what colors are used to describe things outside.

Name: Mike B.

City: Sioux City

Brain Injury: –

Explanation of Mask: Purple means I can’t talk anymore.  I was in the Navy before my injury.  Yellow means bold.  Green means I still feel powerful.  Orange means even after my injury, I’m content.  Gold means I’m hopeful for my future.

Name: Randy G.

City: Sioux City

Brain Injury: –

Explanation of Mask: I chose blue because it is my favorite color.

Name: Robbin M.

City: Sioux City

Brain Injury: –

Explanation of Mask: My mask stands for me which means I’m a part of the world.  I’m one of God’s children and everyone has the right to freedom.

Name: Seth N.

City: Sioux City

Brain Injury: –

Explanation of Mask: I chose orange because it’s my favorite color.  The colors red and orange make me feel happy.  I chose the color brown because I think it goes good with red and orange.

Name: Steven 

City: Sioux City

Brain Injury: –

Explanation of Mask: Green is my favorite color.  Pink is a pretty color.  Orange is a spring color.

Name: Dave V.

City: Sioux City

Brain Injury: –

Explanation of Mask: Blue and white because it looks like a cowboy.  The starts also look like a cowboy.

Name: Don H.

City: Spencer, Iowa

Brain Injury: Closed head injury frontal lobe and both sides

Explanation of Mask: It seems like since I got the head injury, people have wondered what’s wrong with me. So my mask has a brain on it to show that I do still have a brain. The star around the eye stands for a brighter tomorrow. The red pipe cleaners at the top of the mask is to stand for the brain.

Name: Tonya N.

City: Spencer, Iowa

Brain Injury: Brain injury in cerebellum from autoimmune disease

Explanation of Mask: Sadness but put on a smile for everyone else. Brain trying to recover with different synapses firing at random times.

Name: Aaron N.

City: Spencer, Iowa

Brain Injury: Frontal lobe from ATV accident

Explanation of Mask: A very long road to recovery with a lot of potholes in the beginning with fewer as time goes on. Very cloudy with small glimpses of sunshine. And no passing zone all the way.

Name: Jerry S.

City: Spirit Lake, Iowa

Brain Injury: Frontal left side TBI. Right side of my body took a long time to get back to normal. Left side has been saving grace!

Explanation of Mask: Black for all the trauma! First half of the mask is red for power and determination and other half of the journey!

Name: Alfred B.

City: Davenport, Iowa

Brain Injury: Stroke

Explanation of Mask: All the people of different groups, we’re all in this together!

Name: Jeff

City: Davenport, Iowa

Brain Injury: I had several strokes

Explanation of Mask: It has been a very emotional ride. I want to get off the boat and take another ride to go back to work.

Name: Joe S.

City: Davenport, Iowa

Brain Injury:

Explanation of Mask:

Name: Rebecca C.

City: Davenport, Iowa

Brain Injury: While at work on May 3rd as an endoscopic nurse, a patient stopped breathing during a procedure. While running across the room to get the rescue bag, I ran into the corner of a metal overhead cabinet and received a traumatic brain injury.

Explanation of Mask: My mask is divided into halves. The left side which is all black with a teardrop represents the different types of feelings as well as emotions I dealt with. Trapped inside my brain wondering what was happening and why I could not just go back to the way I was the morning of May 3rd, 2016. Before my life changed in just a blink of an eye, while at work doing what I loved, taking care of patients as a nurse. The ride side of my mask represents the hope and courage I feel surrounded by the therapists at the LIFT program at Genesis, who empower me every day to keep fighting and help me understand what happened to my brain and how it heals, the emotions and thoughts that left me alone and isolated. In the middle of my mask you see family, friends, kids, mom, nurse, wife and faith. On the sides of the mask are my high and low points. In the middles is where I draw my strength to fight and dig down deep as I continue on my journey healing from this brain injury.

Name: Diana

City: Davenport, Iowa

Brain Injury: Stroke

Explanation of Mask: Feelings since stroke

Name: Jackie

City: Davenport, Iowa

Brain Injury: I suffered multiple frontal-lobe strokes due to my lupus. The left brain was worse than the right.

Explanation of Mask: Before my stroke I was very pissed and depressed that I had lupus. I didn’t want it. I was going in for my three-month check up when I had high blood pressure and blood in my urine. I was sent over to a nephrologist, who told me I needed a kidney biopsy. The day after I had it, I had my strokes. For the next week, I don’t remember anything, but apparently I was talking. Then, the next week I was getting better, but I was still calm and confused. They told me I had a stroke, but I was annoyed and wanted to go home. Then, my blood pressure was 230 and wouldn’t go down, so I went back to the hospital and found out that my carotid arteries were stenosid, and that’s why I had a stroke. I felt both worried but also calm, if that makes sense. As if I’m nervous about myself, but that I’m taking things one day at a time. On my mask, I have white space where my storks were, and alligator representing my trouble finding words, faces of all my visitors which were at times overwhelming, a graph showing my progress, but also my carotid arteries, which I am afraid won’t go back down. Also, my face is grey, because I feel so calm and kind of blah.

Name: Robin

City: Davenport, Iowa

Brain Injury: Had a seizure in December 2015 affecting the left frontal lobe. I was on life support and after several months of no answers entered the LIFT Program

Explanation of Mask: The eyes are saying I feel different. Above the eyes show I am afraid; straight line shows I am determined and courageous but yet distracted and have dizziness. The 3 tears represent grief, the 4 tears represent my tenderness in this new life, the many tears on the right represent my guilt in how this has affected my spouse and family. The upward cheek lines are appreciation for those who love me. The downward cheeks lines are my embarrassment right now. The mouth represents on the left that I am wanted, the middle diamonds represent that I feel cherished, and the right side represents my hope that things will get better.

Name: Eileen D.

City: Ankeny, Iowa

Brain Injury: Aneurysm

Explanation of Mask: My mask represents my different emotions that I go through. The purple side is where I sustained my injury and it is to support the survivors of brain injury. The blue is for my grumpy days. Pink represents happy days that keep me moving! Orange represents my mom, who was an active advocate for brain injury.

Name: Jordan D.

City: Des Moines, Iowa

Brain Injury: Acquired brain injury from brain tumor 

Explanation of Mask:

Name: Chris M.

City: Des Moines, Iowa

Brain Injury:

Explanation of Mask:

Name: Darrell W.

City: Des Moines, Iowa

Brain Injury:

Explanation of Mask:

Name: Allison R.

City: Coralville, Iowa

Brain Injury: Car accident

Explanation of Mask: I feel like 2 different people living the same but vastly different lives.

Name: Jason R.

City: Coralville, Iowa

Brain Injury: Fell from the top of the stairs and landed at the bottom from the top.

Explanation of Mask: Kiss Rockstar because I feel like a rockstar who is famous. I also have a lot of hatred because I am under civil commitment because of my brain injury. I also feel energetic now because I ride a bike for 2 miles. Now I just got hired at a restaurant to wash dishes because I feel optimistic. I don’t know how I am going to do at work.

Name: Lon G.

City: Coralville, Iowa

Brain Injury: Stroke, Aphasia

Explanation of Mask: I had a stroke. I have Aphasia. Communication is difficult for me. But I am still smart!

Name: Beth I.

City: Coralville, Iowa

Brain Injury: 2 strokes, one in 2009 and the other in 2011. I have sneddon’s syndrome, which means my blood wants to clot.

Explanation of Mask: Gay pride colors could also be brain injury pride.

Name: Monty M.

City: Coralville, Iowa

Brain Injury: Car accident

Explanation of Mask: I feel blank because it’s hard for me to remember things.

Name: Fran B.

City: Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Brain Injury:

Explanation of Mask:

Name: Suzanne G.

City: Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Brain Injury:

Explanation of Mask:

Name: Unknown

City: Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Brain Injury:

Explanation of Mask:

Name: Unknown

City: Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Brain Injury:

Explanation of Mask:

Name: Unknown

City: Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Brain Injury:

Explanation of Mask:

Name: Merrilee C.

City: Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Brain Injury:

Explanation of Mask:

Name: Sandra C.

City: Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Brain Injury:

Explanation of Mask: