When I woke up to start my day seven years ago, I had no idea that my life was about to drastically change forever! So much has happened to get me where I am today, seven years later! It has been quite the journey!
Every anniversary of my hemorrhagic stroke, I relive the stroke, but in a good way. I like to remember the people who helped me throughout my recovery. I still deliver homemade goodies to the nurses and physical therapists, which includes speech therapists and occupational therapists. It makes me feel good to thank them again, and they like it because hemorrhagic stroke survivors don’t always recover.
I get asked a lot, what are the effects I still have from my stroke? My recovery, by what one can see by looking at me, looks great! What one can’t see, is where the problems lie. I love that people think I’ve recovered, but there’s a whole other side that I struggle with every day that nobody sees. There’s a hidden side of strokes, and I have a few to share with you of what I experience. It’s low stamina, lack of strength, fine motor skill deficits, exhaustion that is debilitating, short term memory loss, blood pressure issues, balance issues, and the physical deficits from being paralyzed that haven’t come back.
I do pretty well not letting those things show! I’m very proud of that! I like it when I feel like everyone else! I like it when people say that they can’t tell I’ve had a stroke!
I can’t fake it when I go to therapy! I can’t fake it when I try to exercise, even in Tai Chi. I can’t fake it when I am tired, or when I need to write something with pen and paper. I wish my blood pressure would just stay normal, but it spikes.
I have to pick and choose what I do every day, in order to balance out my stamina and strength. If I can’t attend a party or function, it’s usually because it would be to noisy, BP issues, or I have other things that make it too hard to do everything in a day.
I don’t have the luxury of getting angry. That emotion will spike my BP so high, that it can be dangerous. I’ve learned to let things go. Sometimes I don’t want to let it go, but I must for my own health.
So those are some of the hidden sides of my stroke that I work on every single day. If I can help someone to avoid having a stroke, that would be great! If I can help someone who has had a stroke, I would love that!
My granddaughter has been amazing for me for therapy! I know I am physically stronger because of her, and have loved life even more since she was born 7 months ago.
My life is amazing and full of good stuff every day. If I could keep those hidden stroke effects hidden, I would. Sometimes I know it can help someone else, though, so I need to talk about it. But I would much rather talk about all of the good things. I wake up every day and say thank you, and before I go to sleep every night I say thank you. Life is really good!!