Meet the Author: Guest Interview with Ryan Farrell

This week, we're honored to share the spirited story of a true fighter. Ryan Farrell faced some serious obstacles in her undergraduate career, and sets a strong example for those seeking to overcome life's unexpected curve-balls with determination and grace. It's the heart and soul of Ryan's story that makes this week's guest interview our most personal yet. This week, Interview Captain Britt MacLeod and Ryan delve deeper into this formative experience and the wonderful "Ryanisms" it's fostered.


Your story is truly incredible, Ryan. You are the definition of a fighter! With everything you endured, it’s so impressive that you graduated college only one year later than your originally intended. What sorts of obstacles did you face when you got back to school and how did you stay on track to graduate?

          I faced my fair-share of obstacles upon returning back to school. With my TBI, it’s like I had to re-learn how to learn. Before my injury, I never had any sort of “disability”. However, I was quite fortunate to be set-up with the Office of Special Services, along with Counseling Services, which was one of the most tremendous assistants.

          I am also 100% positive that I wouldn’t have stayed-on-track if I did not have my fantastic ~*Alpha Sigma Tau*~ Sorority-Sisters. As soon as the Fall’11-Semester began, I made sure I took on the role of Philanthropy-Chair within my sorority, and was able to become even more active within Campus-Greek-Council!!! 


This is a hard question for me to ask, but I know you’ll be confident answering it. Do you ever wonder what your life would be like if you were never injured? How did your injury change you and what do you think is the best thing that came out of your situation?

         Well, thank you for asking this question! Quite often, I think about and wonder how my life would be going if I had never been injured… “Where in NYC would I be living?” “Which one of my Sorority~Sisters/other Gal~Pals would I be living with?” “How much longer would it be until I was offered a full-time-position on Good Morning America?” Never have been one to dwell in the past, though! 

           My injury certainly did change me – physically, emotionally, cognitively. But, you know what? I am thankful for those changes; they have helped shape me into the woman I am becoming. I was *always* aware of the importance of family. My TBI further solidified the fact that, when it comes right down to it, YOUR-FAMILY are the only ones who will be there for you, no hesitations, no questions asked! 

          The absolute best thing that came out of my injury was my ability to become involved with the Brain Injury Association of Massachusetts! Actually, on the topic of family… my family&I were quite honored to be the faces of the 2014 Annual-Appeal.

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We love your “Ryanisms”! What is your favorite “Ryanism”?

          How much space do I have to respond to this!?! The ever-growing-list of “Ryanisms”, which began way back in the Summer of 2010, while rehabbing at Spaulding Rehab. in Boston. It was a way for me to remember anything and everything, as my short-term-memory was basically non-existent. Hmmm, if I have to pick just *one*, I’d have to say my favorite would be my response to a question, in place of “Yes” or “Okay”: 

~~~ “SURELY, Temple!!”

Our thanks once again to Ryan for sharing her story with us this week. To learn more about Ryan, and to follow her adventures and musings on life, please be sure to check out her blog: "Mind OVER Matter"!