- The Enterprise
- The Recorder
Imagine going out to play a soccer game and then suddenly being medivaced to Children's Hospital, only to wake up and not remember your loved ones.
For Emilee Lowman, that was her reality two years ago.
The road back to who she was before a traumatic brain injury has been a long one and she continues to press on, saying that her deep spiritual faith and the bond she has with her mother, Toni, keeps her going.
“My mom is like my number one fan,” Lowman said. I don't know what I would do without her. I love her so much. She's like my best friend and I do have a pretty strong faith and spiritual relationship with God and that's the only reason I'm probably getting through things today because I don't know what I would have done without it.”
Lowman was playing soccer for Patuxent High School on Sept. 28, 2010 against Calvert High when she found herself down on the ground in the fourth game of the season.
“I was on the ground and got kneed and kicked on the side of the head and I hit the ground and blacked out,” Lowman said. “I got up and I really didn't know what was going on. I saw the ball and I tried to stand up and couldn't stand up. They were asking me questions.”
Lowman lost all of her memory.
“I have retrograde amnesia,” Lowman said. “I can't remember anything before I got injured, which is really hard on me now because academically it's just a lot harder. I've had to relearn everything.”
It took a long time for Lowman to really trust those around her and the road back to school was very emotional. Toni Lowman said that in helping her daughter transition back into school she wanted her to have the one-on-one teacher assistance that she needed and The King's Christian Academy in Callaway was the best option for her.
Although Emilee said she's struggling already as the school year gets under way, she hopes the smaller classrooms will assist in her learning. Emilee said not knowing the truth from a lie was difficult and catching sarcasm was also difficult.
“I didn't remember anyone,” Emilee said. “When I got home, I kind of just sat on the couch. My mom told me who my friends were and I had people bringing me cupcakes and gift baskets. One of my friends showed me photos from her birthday that I went to. My mom showed me pictures from when I was younger until now. They really helped me out when I got back into school.”
Emilee had a desire to play lacrosse, but she felt an easier “click” with soccer. She's also on the cheerleading squad this year for King's Christian.
“I don't know how good I was before, but it just seemed to really be the easiest fit for me,” Emilee said. “This is my first time playing soccer on a team again. I've had to relearn how to play again.”
She is playing forward for King's Christian head coach Mike Chesterman and is looking forward to playing in college one day. She desires to be an emergency room nurse one day.
“We're just learning to work together as a team out there and I'm enjoying it.” Emilee said.
Lowman would also like to speak to her classmates at some point on concussion awareness and she's prepared the speech.
“I'm definitely telling people about it,” she said. “It's very important and it's a struggle.”
Toni is very proud of her daughter and her strong desire to excel.
“She's a really sweet person,” Toni Lowman said, “and I worry about her and I know she's a little timid out there. It's just nice to see her out there and she's not the type of person to tell people or want sympathy. Most people don't know about it. I'm really proud of her. She definitely wants to be a voice for concussion awareness.”