Perfect Love

An interview with Author Lucia Hur

How did the idea for this book begin?

This book is based on a log I started to keep soon after Bobby’s accident more than two decades ago. Since the day of the accident, I’ve been Bobby’s primary caregiver, and what I realized is that our story could be meaningful and inspirational to those in similar situations. And at best, it could bring a ray of hope and light to where there is now only darkness.

What was your motivation for publishing this book worldwide?

I promised God that if my son came out of a coma, I would share my life experiences and prayers with others who may need some guidance as they’re walking on the same path we did. The other equally important motive is a selfish desire to help my son move forward in his search for himself.

This is a true story written by you, but it’s told in the third person. Why is that?

The problem with writing a first-person narrative was that it made it more about me than about Bobby and his heroic struggle to regain his rightful place in society. The first-person format also diminished the key role my husband, John, played in all of this. He may not have been on the front lines to the extent that I was, but the comfort, support, and wise counsel he provided me daily was critical. In addition, I felt that the third-person narrative could open up more perspectives from others all around.

What makes your book different from other books on brain injury?

My book is a true account and lays out a step-by-step manual for confused and overwhelmed caregivers at times when their judgment is critical, yet clouded by catastrophe. It provides a roadmap on what helped us get over tragic hurdles and it could be a resourceful guide for someone who is dispirited and in despair.

What did you learn from initially dealing with Bobby’s injury to caring for him throughout his recovery?

I have learned a number of lessons as a result of what happened on that fateful day, two of which are definitely worth sharing. The first is that what’s important—what truly matters in this life—has little to do with the destination and almost everything to do with the journey. For example, it doesn’t really matter where you end up in your career, be it high or low on the corporate ladder. Rather, what matters is the love, commitment, devotion, and loyalty you express on your journey.

Second, the age-old adage “nothing good ever comes easy” is true. Certainly, for me, the steps on this journey have not been easy ones. As a consequence, I have grown as a human and spiritual being.

The forward is written by Dr. David Morledge, who was Bobby’s primary neurologist. Why was it important for you that he be a part of your book?

It’s an understatement to say that Dr. Morledge was integral to Bobby’s recovery, which the book details. He was then a non-conventional doctor, who we reached out and chose to be Bobby’s doctor. We searched for someone who could let parents to be an integral part of Bobby’s coma stimulation days and he supported our non-conventional approach. Without Dr. Morledge, we could not have progressed and been on the same rehabilitative path of recovery. It was important to me that his voice and expertise was also heard. There is still no proven treatment for traumatic brain injury, which is challenging for medical professionals, patients and their families all to navigate. Numerous studies have shown that strong family support is one of the key factors in rehabilitation, which was true for our family and something that Dr. Morledge strongly believes in. (Dr. Morledge is now the director of the Brain Injury Program at the Texas NeuroRehab Center in Austin.)

How is Bobby doing today?

After almost 30 years since the accident, Bobby is finally coming to terms with himself and finding peace. While rehab sessions in speech, physical, and behavioral therapies will continue for the rest of his life, Bobby is constantly searching and seeking to become a meaningful contributor to society as he is so thankful and appreciative of his new life that God has set forth. He lives on his own and even self-published a collection of poems that our entire family cherish.

What advice would you give families dealing with traumatic brain injury?

I urge them to follow this one piece of Churchillian advice: Never give up. Never, ever give up. While that adage may seem self-evident and even trite, I guarantee that it lies at the heart of every successful recovery.