My Fourth Strokiversary

Well, not only is it Pi Day, but it’s the 4th Anniversary of my hemorrhagic stroke. It’s my “Strokiversary”! I’ve come a long way in 4 years! Today, for me, is a day to celebrate, almost like a birthday. I felt like my life changed 4 years ago, and I started my new way of life.
Life for me is really good! I wake up thankful, live each day in a positive way, and go to bed thankful every night. I don’t take things for granted, and I don’t sweat the small stuff. I no longer get to worry or stress out on things. I have very reactive blood pressure, and very quickly can be reminded of that if I get stressed.
Since my stroke was caused from high blood pressure, it is the one thing that I can’t let get out of control, or I could have another stroke. I will do everything in my power to avoid another stroke. So, I avoid stressful situations. I have additional prescriptions that I can take if my BP goes too high, and it can bring it down 40 points in about 20 mins. There are side effects, so I don’t like having to take them, but when necessary, I do what I have to do.
Aside from the blood pressure problems, I basically have right-side weakness, and balance issues. My back fatigues very fast when doing the same task for a short while. Then I will feel like I can’t hold my head up. I can walk about 1 to 1 1/2 miles. The bursitis in my hips is bad. My bicep, tricep, and trapezoid are very atrophied, which causes problems trying to keep my arm up. My hand is weak, with thumb and forefinger very weak and uncoordinated. Writing is still a challenge, and still can’t write cursive. Speech can be jumbled if I talk too fast. Short-term memory issues, but not too severe. Those are my basic physical challenges, which is why I tell people that I am about 80-85% back to normal. Usually I don’t talk about what I CAN’T DO, I focus on what I CAN DO. Most people just looking at me can’t even tell I’ve had a stroke. I love that! But I get asked all the time, “What is still wrong with you?”. So that’s it in a nutshell. If you really watch me do something, you would see the problems, especially if you spent a day with me.
My husband sees it all, and is very protective of me because he knows what happens when I try to push it. I respect him for that, and love him so deeply. He has helped me with my recovery immensely. He is a very good person, and I am thankful  to have him for my husband. We will celebrate our 30th Anniversary this year!!
My kids are wonderful people, and I love my time with them every day, whether in person or on the phone. I have an amazing family and relatives, and the best friends a person could ever wish for.
This year Bryan and I want to start our foundation for stroke recovery, so stay tuned for that!
I have a nice life. I don’t focus on my deficits, but still try to work on strengthening the different body parts by doing creative things.
Today, I will make a pie for Pi Day, and I will have a glass of champagne to celebrate my 4th “Strokiversary”. Cheers!

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4 thoughts on “My Fourth Strokiversary

  1. Oh my gosh, Jan, you are such an inspiration! Obviously, as a hemorrhagic stroke thriving survivor, but more than that, as a person! You have a very special way of looking at and coping with life that I so admire. I’m blessed to be your Tia! XOXOXO

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