Get Me through Tomorrow: A Sister's Memoir of Brain Injury and Revival

Get Me through Tomorrow: A Sister's Memoir of Brain Injury and Revival

Get Me through Tomorrow: A Sister's Memoir of Brain Injury and Revival

Get Me through Tomorrow: A Sister's Memoir of Brain Injury and Revival

Synopsis

On August 4, 2004, Jason Crigler was onstage in a New York City nightclub when a blood vessel burst in his brain. The thirty-four-year-old guitarist, a fixture in the downtown music scene who had played with Marshall Crenshaw, Linda Thompson, and John Cale, narrowly survived the bleed. A string of complications that followed- meningitis, seizures, coma- left him immobile and unresponsive, with his doctors saying nothing more could be done. Meanwhile, Jason's medical insurance quickly hit its lifetime cap, meaning that his policy would no longer pay for his care. Despite such overwhelming circumstances, Jason's parents, sister, and pregnant wife were sure that he was still there, trapped inside his incapacitated body but able to fight his way back. They mounted an intense course of rehabilitation for him even as they fought a healthcare system that was geared toward defeat.

In intimate and unflinching prose, Mojie Crigler chronicles her brother's harrowing decline and miraculous recovery. Get Me Through Tomorrow is much more than the story of a medical victory amid a broken healthcare system, however. It is about a sister's metamorphosis from fearful naïf to assertive caregiver. It is about families bridging heartache and divorce to find hope. It is about the deep and enduring relationship between siblings- and the love that transforms them.

Excerpt

In the middle of a song, something in Jason broke. Looking out over the crowd that packed Sin-é, the thirty-four-year-old guitarist saw the lights at the far end of the club begin to bulge. He blinked, then squinted, trying to refocus his eyes, but the lights continued to swell until eventually they stretched out over the room, expanding into long glowing blue and white and yellow lines that hovered near the ceiling.

The first two songs had felt normal, as had the sound check, dinner, and the entire day beforehand. Now singer Sandy Bell’s voice sounded far away, and the music seemed as if it were playing down a hall instead of surrounding him. Jason checked the pedals, cables, amp, and his yellow Squier Telecaster, a guitar he’d played thousands of times without trouble. The equipment looked fine, as did the other musicians, all of whom Jason had worked with for years. Unable to hear them, he was playing into an abyss, moving his fingers by rote memory of the song. Surely whatever was happening soon would pass.

But the music began to materialize in front of him, each note forming then floating away down a long tunnel. Bewilderment gave way to panic. He threw his guitar over his head. With his hands pressed together like a wedge, he pushed through the crowd to find Monica, his wife. Two months pregnant, Monica had been staying home lately, but tonight she’d wanted to hear Jason play.

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