The good, the bad, and the downright silly things I have learned being a stroke survivor!
I am alive! I am approaching my 3 year anniversary and the odds of having another stoke within the first 5 years are high. I have had a few “silent strokes” or TIAs, otherwise, so far so good.
Finally I have numerous photos, proof positive, that I indeed have a brain. My brain has also been “mapped” and I learned of a congenital defect of a major artery, this is good news to have as previously this was not known.
My sons had to mature a tad bit faster then their peers. Some day their spouses will thank me.
I no longer take life for granted. I know first hand that everything can literally change in the blink of an eye.
Want to know how to throw a fabulous pity party? Ask me! I have given myself several.
Exercise is no longer about size, rather it is about reconnecting neural pathways and creating new pathways as well as keeping my blood flowing nicely. It is also a blessing because I am able to exercise. (I still do not like it)
Having a stroke entitled me to a pretty silver bracelet (in case I am found by paramedics) and a subscription to StrokeSmart a fabulous magazine that has proven invaluable. I have also received samples for adult diapers (thankfully I do not need) as well as adaptive equipment (again thankfully I do not need).
I am disabled, but not disabled enough. Yes, you read that correctly. I cannot drive, which means my husband now does the grocery shopping and errands (he does not see this as a positive). It also means I am home when my teen sons arrive home from school, sporting events, or evenings out with friends.
I do not drool or spill nearly as often as I did three years ago. I also do not drop items as often! My aphasia is also improving OR no one notices any longer when I refer to the “floor” as a “ball”. Tough call there. I also received a card explaining that I am not drunk, rather suffer from aphasia. I need to find that card again.
Having a stroke really lets you know who your true friends in life are. A huge shout out to Deb, who has always been there for me, even when she most likely has wanted to scream, she has always been there during the good, the bad, and the silly!
My temper is a lot shorter then it used to be. I tend to become frustrated very easily (my husband asked if this was one of the downright hilarious things about having a stroke). A sense of humour is indeed needed by not only the stroke survivor but also by the caregivers.
I have three medicine bags, each a different shade of pink. Do not laugh (actually, go ahead, laughter is excellent medicine), it has helped me as well as my family. Some days the colour coding is more necessary than others.