Spirituality and Philosophy

Liberated Living

Eliakim Thorpe

Liberated Living – “Padman: A Dad’s Guide To Buying….Those And Other Tales” w/Guest Mark Elswick (Part 2)

Some humor, seriousness, and overall interesting read; author, speaker, father, and survivor Mark Elswick is a guest of the show to present an interesting look at traumatic brain injury. Mark Elswick discusses the importance of bringing awareness to Traumatic Brain Injury, a silent and debilitating injury that often goes unnoticed.

As a 23-year old, Mark Elswick had everything going for him, a good job, junior in college, baby on the way, loving family environment, and plenty of friends. Then, something that had never crossed his mind interrupted his comfortable young life. Barely a man, he was involved in a bizarre auto accident, sustaining a severe traumatic brain injury. Following life support and a month-long coma, Mark was forced to re-learn life’s basic necessities. He had to retrain his brain to think, eat, walk, talk, and everything else imaginable. Without the aforementioned lesson Mark learned, there’s no telling where he would be. Immediately after the accident, his parents were told he wouldn’t make it through the day. Then, a week later, they were told that he’d be a vegetable “if” he ever regained consciousness. Fortunately, though, the perseverance Mark Elswick saw daily from family, friends, teachers, coaches, and community members propelled him to rise above those negative predictions.

Just two years after Mark Elswick’s accident, he returned to college against his therapists’ wishes–“too early.” Struggling with memory, concentration, and attention, his G.P.A. dipped below a 2.0; he was placed on academic probation, “up or out status.” That is the point where Mark’s conscious life bottomed out. It was either make it improve or settle for a lifetime of dependency. Since that time, Mark Elswick graduated from the University of Michigan-Flint with a B.A. in English and double minor in Writing and British Literature. Earned his M.A. from Central Michigan University. Mark Elswick has been a sportswriter, sports editor, substitute teacher, jr. high teacher, college professor, and university coordinator. Today, Mark honestly believes in what he was destined to do. Having signed a publishing contract, he’s writing for the injury that nearly claimed his life and independence. Everything earned from writing his book “Padman: A Dad’s Guide To Buying..Those & Other Tales” will see 10-20% donated to a brain injury cause as he continually tries to raise awareness.