Seeing Possibilities 

A blog for our visitors, friends, partners, and community members to share thoughts and experiences about living with a brain injury, co-creating community services, and other interesting things that come up!


What does a Brain Injury Look Like?: An Animated Video

Hot off the (virtual) press! A young Master's student in Biomedical Communcations, Paul Kelly, has created a super animation of what happens during brain injury as part of his Master's thesis.

What makes this video special is that he has the animations so you get a sense of what is going inside the skull when the brain is doing all the bouncing around, but he also zooms in and out from the whole brain to parts to neurons (brain cells) to even smaller internal parts of neurons called microtubules.

So when you see pictures of someone falling off their bike without a helmet or heading a soccer ball or getting head-checked in hockey (you don't DO any of those things, do you?? ;-), imagine what's going on inside their skull and re-play for yourself the sound of microtubules snapping (gives me the heebie-jeebies every time I hear it!)

Concussions - Seeing the Invisible Injury from Paul F Kelly on Vimeo.


(If your internet connection isn't very fast or if you don't see movement of the brain when Paul talks about it in the video, let it load first or play through and then play with it -- that will get rid of the dealys that prevent you seeing as it was meant to be seen!)

Posted on Monday, January 9, 2012 at 12:49 by Registered CommenterDr Karen in , | Comments8 Comments | References1 Reference

The Write Hemisphere

This sounds like it's going to be a tremendous learning and sharing opportunity. I'm just going to give the introductory information from, a British Columbia brain injury support website:

The following is a series of podcasts titled, The Write Hemisphere, by Greg Goldberg. The series will feature a new episode each week based on the diary that Greg kept after he suffered a traumatic brain injury, and throughout his path to recovery.

Greg GolbergGreg Goldberg is a Brain Injury Survivor, Inspirational Speaker and author. After suffering a car crash in 1998, Greg spent nearly a month in a coma, followed by a long journey of recovery. Life became fraught with challenges; initially struggling with impulsiveness, bouts of anger and fatigue. However, as the year’s progressed, Greg learned to adapt to his limitations and become proactive in managing and structuring his life so he can enjoy it to the fullest. Today, Greg is upbeat, cheerful and full of zest for life. He uses is experience of living with a brain injury to fuel his compassion and passion to help others with similar experiences. Greg currently volunteers with the Victoria Literacy Program teaching adults how to read. In addition, a portion of proceeds from the sales of his book “The Organ of Intelligence” go to Brain Injury associations and support group across Canada.


To watch his first entry of this video story, go to The Write Hemiphere

This entry is by his wife, talking about her experience of the day Greg was injured.

But don't stop there -- there are 7 entries so far --

Posted on Saturday, December 3, 2011 at 14:53 by Registered CommenterDr Karen in , | Comments2 Comments

Learning About the Brain: Changing Brains

I've come across an approachable video introduction to the brain. It's a useful series created by the University of Oregon Brain Development Lab and its called Changing Brains.

It focuses mostly on the developing brains of children, but since our brains are all based on the same principles, you can watch these and still think about (or comment or ask!!) about how it applies to adults -- with or without identified brain injuries.

I'll post links to the videos to help create a little "self-study" about the brain. Do they tell you all you need to know? Not by a long shot -- but they are very well-done introductions to important things about brains and they only last a few minutes per video -- they fit in everyone's schedule! ;-)

Here's the introduction to the series -- an overview of what's coming up (<2.5 minutes):


And, since I'm sure you'll want another taste right away, ;-) part 2 is about Plasticity of the brain and how a brain's "architecture" is put together (about 4 minutes). 

For more about plasticity -- the ability of the brain to change itself-- you might enjoy:

The Brain that Changes Itself (the link is an excerpt from a book by Norman Doidge)

Watch a CBC documentary about the brain's plasticity (45 minutes) or listen to a CBC Radio program about brain plasticity (25 minutes)

Brain Plasticity Overview: Posit Science

Posted on Wednesday, October 5, 2011 at 16:19 by Registered CommenterDr Karen in | Comments1 Comment

Congratulations to BIST

We would like to bring your attention to a great new annual opportunity to get involved in developing services for persons with acquired brain injury in Toronto.

BIST had its first Annual Walk, Run or Roll on the 24th of September 2011 and it was a tremendous success!  The event was sold out several weeks before the event and there was a terrific crowd assembled on Saturday morning.  Ben Mulroney gave heart felt remarks about brain injury as he has a friend who is living with brain injury.

Team Possibilities was comprised of Tom and Andrea Finlayson, Deb Gallagher and Paula Cassin.

Congratulations also to Possibilities alumni -- Dan Harren and Melanie Hay for a terrific showing!

Mark your calendars for Saturday 22 September 2012 for the next opportunity. Oh and by the way - BIST is looking for ideas on what to call the new run.  Have any ideas -- send them along to

Congratulations to the BIST organizers on a job well done!

Posted on Monday, September 26, 2011 at 17:22 by Registered CommenterPaula Cassin | Comments1 Comment

Games for Brain Injury Rehab?

I came across this posting in a LinkedIn group and thought it was a good one to share with our Members and their families and friends. Remember to get back to the folks at Blue Marble Game, not to us -- just sharing information, so now you know as much as I know!:

Treasure of Bell Island- A video game for the treatment of many common impairments often experienced by people with mTBI

We are interested in finding people with mTBI who might want to give this game a try and give us feedback! We need your help!!

IRB Study # A-16123i
Cognitive Motor Therapy Applications Using Video Game Platform
PI: Sheryl Flynn PT, PhD

Description: The purpose of this research study is to learn more about how to design and develop video games for rehabilitation. The reason for collecting this information is to find ways to improve rehabilitation outcomes for specific groups of patients and their families.

Information from focus groups (small group discussions about games), usability trials of games, and product testing will be used to develop better video games that can be used for rehabilitation purposes.

Approximately 300 participants will be enrolled in this project.


Sheryl Flynn PT, PhD 310-913-5707, sheryl at OR

Bonnie Kennedy PhD, OTR/L at 626-607-7391, bonnielk at

(Use @ instead of "at" for the email addresses, right? ;-)

Requirements: We are looking for 4 specific groups of people:

  1. people with disability who are undergoing rehabilitation,
  2. people with disability who have received rehabilitation in the past,
  3. rehabilitation specialists (PTs, OTs, Speech, Psych, Physicians) and
  4. family/caregivers, friends of people with disabilities

The discussion in the focus group will be in English

Time Commitment: approximately 2 hours

Compensation: Each participant will receive $50.00 for their participation

Thank you very much for your consideration.


Sheryl Flynn PT, PhD

Posted on Monday, June 13, 2011 at 18:12 by Registered CommenterDr Karen in , , | Comments2 Comments