I planned a going away/birthday party on October 1, 2011. I decided to throw it at Ali’s (Bar 280) near my old apartment. I was to leave the following morning on the 2nd. I planned to stay at my old apartment with friends and see my dog for one last time before I left. I […]
About Cavin Balaster
In 2011, I fell two stories, suffered a severe traumatic brain injury, and was comatose for 12 days. I was diagnosed with a diffuse axonal injury -- Approximately 90% of people with this type of injury never regain consciousness. After relearning to eat, walk, and talk, I began a journey to spread awareness about health and recovery.
PEG stands for Percutaneous Endoscopic Gastrostomy. It is a tube that enters the stomach through your abdomen. It was kinda like an artificial umbilical chord and I was bored with it. It’s like a catheter only in the sense that there is a hard plastic balloon inside my body, only this one was in my […]
I used to play guitar and sing before the accident. After going to Ali’s on September 3rd, 2011, we walked back to the apartment and and dug out my first acoustic guitar. It wasn’t my best guitar; in fact it was my mom’s brother’s guitar that he had given to her. She taught me to […]
I was so lucky to have made it out from underneath that scaffolding alive. You are so nice to me. Everything was perfect that night. Drinking like pirates, without fear that dawn would arrive. My right hand in your left hand and your left in my right. May everything stay like this for a long […]
I have ataxia. Wikipedia states: Ataxia is a neurological sign consisting of lack of voluntary coordination of muscle movements, as in walking. This is what still ails me the most today. Ataxia coupled with atrophy (the wasting away of a part of the body due to a lack of use) kept me from walking for […]
When I went in for the tracheal resection I was very excited. I understood that I would need to stay in the hospital for at least 5 days to recover, and it was a serious and invasive surgery. They were going to cut into my throat, saw through my windpipe twice, and then shorten my […]
I always worked hard towards my goal: to get as well as possible and be independent again. I remember making a vow to myself that if I were never able to walk or speak again; or that if I were going to be permanently shaky and uncoordinated on my left side, I did not want […]
I left the Traumatic Brain Injury Unit at Mount Sinai on the 27th of July, 2011. My mother pushed me in a wheel chair to the edge of the sidewalk and then I used the walker to brace myself enough to swing myself into the cab. I was still very weak and didn’t have much […]
I was to be transferred to a nursing home on July 18th for “sub-acute” care where I would not get much therapy but where I would stay until I could begin outpatient therapy. My primary nurse told my mom that this would not be a good place for me and to do anything she could […]
On July 18th, 2011 (1 year ago) I walked outside for the first time since the accident. I used a walker on the front ramp of Mount Sinai. Here’s a video of that along with a response to this video sent by my mom. This email was written to my mom by my aunt Debbie, who […]
This is a list of my injuries: I had a bruised and swollen left eye (probably from hitting the scaffolding), luckily the actual eye orbit was bloodshot but ok. A nasal fracture that looked old, a fractured right ileum and a fractured right sacrum (hip bones), 3 cracked ribs on my left side, both lungs […]
On the 4th of July, 2011, I was taken outside in a wheelchair with my mother and some friends. It was a very nice day. I practiced propelling myself moving the foot rests of my wheelchair out of the way and scooting myself forward. I was in an uphill battle with atrophy. I needed to […]
Cavin’s brain injury journey is astounding. His experiences and accomplishments since returning from the brink of death are incredible!
Dr. Leonard PressPress Vision
Cavin takes you on a captivating journey of challenging experiences that leads to an amazingly successful recovery. Cavin is a remarkable person who conveys a remarkable message in each of his talented motivational speeches.
Chip Howe, M.A.Mary lee Foundation
Cavin is wonderfully articulate and takes you through his long rehabilitation journey which involves expert medical care, intense family support, and several ingenious therapy procedures.
Susan R. Barry, Ph.DFixing My Gaze
I’ve never heard a more superb and comprehensive combination of humor, courage, and integration of knowledge on how a patient with traumatic brain injury has put his life back together.
Dr. Curtis R. BaxstromNeuro-optometric Rehabilitation Association