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Strategies for Riding Public Transportation After a TBI

Strategies for Riding Public Transportation After a TBI

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Hey guys, it's Adam, and I want to share an email that I received. I live in Chicago, and riding the EL after returning from deployment has been tough. Do you ride the Metro in DC, and what strategies work for you? Well, first of all, the Metro can be very complicated, very challenging. In addition to going with all the different lines you've got to find out if you're on the right line, if you're on the right train, if you're going in the right direction. You've got to make sure you don't miss your stop, and those are all things that have happened to me. I've been late for appointments. I've been late for work. I've been late for just meetings with people because the Metro went past my stop, and by the time I realized it I had to backtrack on the line 2 stops, get off, go on the next train, not to mention the place is filled with people. There's people everywhere. It's not really a secure environment. You don't know what's going on in the train. There may be 200 people on the car, and so one of the strategies that I find helpful is if you either go towards the very front of the train or the very back of the train. Find those cars that will be less crowded. Also within the car there's usually a door in the middle or there's doors at the ends in the front and the back, so I find it helpful if you can go in towards the middle. You've got your back against the wall right by the door. You can take a look down both aisles and see everybody on the train. Alternatively you can go towards one of the front or the end of the cars, and you've got the doors there, and also you can see the entire people in the car, so those are both really helpful strategies. However, that doesn't solve the problem of not finding the right stop or getting on the right train, and that can be mitigated by planning ahead. You've heard me talk a lot about planning and kind of preparing for your daily events, and this is one of those things where it's really helpful to do. A lot of these transit companies have websites where you can go to. You can find--plan out your route ahead of time, and that's something that I've found to be really helpful. I know what stops I'm going to. I know if I have to transition within the Metro system, what train I'm going from and to, and with repetition you can really kind of mitigate a lot of those situations, so I hope that's helpful for you, and I'm looking forward to hearing more emails and questions.

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Stops, lines, colors, directions — and lots of people rushing to and from trains. Riding the subway can be anxiety making and confusing, especially after a combat-related brain injury. Adam shares some strategies.

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Hi, I’m Adam Anicich

I’m a former Army Sergeant, a Department of Veterans Affairs employee, a service-disabled vet, and someone with a brain injury. I’m here to share my story with you — along with some practical tips — and I hope that I can help you in your own journey of recovery.

Learn more about Adam >



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