Lee Woodruff is a freelance writer and public
relations executive. She and her husband, Bob Woodruff, are the
authors of In an Instant: A Familyís Journey of Love and Healing,
The New York Times best-selling book about their familyís difficult
journey during Bobís critical injury in Iraq while anchoring a
broadcast for ABC News.
Lee and Bob have also established the Bob Woodruff Family Fund for
Traumatic Brain Injury to raise money to assist members of the
military with cognitive rehabilitation and other care needs.
Editor-in-Chief Gary Bargís interview with Lee sheds a light on this
dedicated care advocate.
Gary Barg: It has been
a few years since Bob was injured in Iraq. How is he doing?
Lee Woodruff: Bob is doing
amazing and his recovery is miraculous; but as miraculous as it is,
it was also hard work, as anybody knows who is caregiving someone or
going through any kind of rehabilitation or recovery. It is
day-to-day and some days are better than other days.
GB: How are you doing?
LW: I am doing really well, but
I think that we all have our own form of post-traumatic stress
disorder; especially when something happens instantly, like Bobís
injury. That changes your life and sort of upends your faith in the
order of things in the universe. There are moments like if he goes
out for milk or something and he hasnít come back in 20 minutes, my
first thought is, What is wrong? That is not the way I used to
GB: Has it affected Bob's
relationship with the kids, too?
My kids are much more empathetic
and wonderful human beings in the wake of this.
Children who go through this kind of tragedy
understand how much more precious life is; but
my daughter, who is very close to him, gets
worried as well. She has been indelibly
marked by the whole experience. Children who are
in this situation learn lessons earlier than, as
a parent, one would like them to.
Have you found that there can be a kind of joy
and connectivity to come out of a caregiving
experience like this?
Absolutely; and laughter, too. Laughter was a
huge part of our ability to heal. Bob and
I share a really similar sense of humor, a
healthy sense of humor. We drew on that heavily
to keep him cheered and in good spirits because
that was a very clear tie to his recovery and
how much will he had to keep pushing forward,
especially in the months when he was in extreme