Exclusive Interview: Taylor Twellman
Jeff Lemieux: I think pretty much everyone has a general idea of what your situation is right now, but it’s been reported so many ways, in so many different variations during the last year and a half, I just wanted to give you a chance – in your own words – to bring us through the timeline of when the original injury happened, the process that you’ve been going through, up until where we are now.
Taylor Twellman: Do we have an hour? (Laughs) It’s been a long road. It started [August 30, 2008]. I know these dates backwards because of the doctors and different people, the specialists that I’ve seen. (LA Galaxy goalkeeper) Steve Cronin came out and there was a ball between me and the goalie, and unfortunately when my head met the ball, so did his hand. At that time, I knew something was wrong. If you watch the game tape, I said I had a concussion right afterwards to Shalrie (Joseph). But it was one of those things where I was like, ‘Oh, I’ll be fine. I’ll play through it, get through it.’ Well, about three weeks later we were in Colorado and that’s when it really kind of let loose – dizziness, double-vision, blackout spells, headaches. I played through it. Looking back on it, I wish I wouldn’t have, but I played the eight weeks after being punched and went through a lot of different processes. If you watch the replay, my neck, my head, everything’s in there. Long story short, I come back last year, I’m rehabbing. I came back, I should’ve been honest with the doctors – I played the D.C. and New York games with a small headache. I should’ve been honest. I wasn’t, and it is what it is. When your neck’s not stable – and I’m not going to go through the medical terms – but when your neck’s not stable, I don’t have any cushioning for heading the ball with my head. So I had a lot of concussion-like symptoms. Fortunately that 10-month, 11-month spell that I went through last year is over. I can smile, walk around, I can come to games. So right now I’m rehabbing. I saw Dr. (Robert) Cantu, who’s world-renowned with concussions, and he looked me right in the face in June and he said, ‘Do you want to play again?’ And I said, ‘Yes.’ He said, ‘Then you have to do it my way.’ And unfortunately that means patience and a lot of staying low-key and not pushing it. Because I’d like to push it right now and unfortunately I can’t, and that’s why I’m here today.