Day 11 – A Long Way

My name is Joelle Rogers and I have been attending groups at the Triangle Aphasia Project for a year and a half. I had a stroke in May 2016. When I started at TAP, I didn’t know this organization would be an essential part of my recovery.

In the beginning, I was not talking much. My language and memory had pretty much gone offline. A critical part of my brain wasn’t working. TAP came at the right time! Maura knew how to engage me as a person with aphasia, not a person with an intellectual disability. She was so positive about my recovery, energizing, and smart. She met with my family members and gave us the solace we needed.

Along the way, TAP has been a home to me. Through it all – the groups, volunteering at Read and Feed this summer, the holiday gatherings – TAP provides learning, mutual support, social engagement, among other things. For example, I’m a member of the back-to-work group and plan to return to working as a mental health professional. Along with my speech therapy sessions, the TAP groups give me the opportunity to regain my verbal fluency and confidence. I’m working to improve my verbal skills so that I can treat clients, talk about my story, and empower people to do what they want to do, especially those with aphasia or diverse functioning.

I’m still recovering and have a long way to go. With TAP, I know I have the support of TAP friends, speech therapists, family members, and other people to help me on my path to recovery.