It is 3:03 a.m, July 5, 2014. Technically, it’s been one year since my second stroke that left me partially paralyzed on my left side. I spoke of that journey here so I won’t rehash the the whole thing.
Everyone sees me and says how good I look and I appreciate thst, I really do but (there is that word) but I don’t feel that I do. I detest that I have regained the weight I had loss prior to the stroke.
I still walk with a cane and am working hard to adjust how I walk. Lift my knee (exaggerated almost), place foot straight heel first. My shoulder has more range of movement and my hand has some movement but I still wake up with my hand curled tight. I have started wearing the brace again at night. I HAVE made tremendous progress but I am not 100% like I had thought I would be. I miss my high heels and my heeled boots.
I still tire easily. Nap times are a norm sometimes a necessity. My breathing, eating and voice are still an issue. Apparently, I can choke on air. Doctor wants to check me for nodules on my vocal cords. I want to pray it away.
I AM ALIVE THOUGH!!!!!
Most folks with one stroke much less two on the brain stem either are vegetables, wheelchair bound, speechless or dead. Albeit mine were minor strokes in the brain stem, they were major because of being in the brain stem.
What I have learned from this is priceless.
1. I have to take care of me to take care of others.
2. Sometimes I can only do what I can do.
3. Listen to my body, it speaks volumes.
4. It is okay to rely on others.
5. It is okay to say no. (This one was and still is a really hard one for me)
6. Take time with those you love.
7. Don’t worry about the small stuff.
8. Do the things that you have a passion for and move you.
9. Make like a duck…let the things that people say that are hurtful, gossip or stinging…roll off your back.
10. Most importantly. Spend time with God!! In the Word, in study, in action and in prayer. BE STILL AND KNOW HE IS GOD!!!!
I have reduced the activities where I can. We have given notice that we are not renewing our fostrr license. We have adopted our two kiddos; Brandon Lee Turner and Rose Lizabetta Turner. I have found they are enough to keep up with. I don’t have the stamina for more. It saddens me but I have to be realistic.
We are taking a vacation as a family across country in a car. (We may need prayer.) We are disconnecting from the churches during this time so I can rejuvenate to better serve them. Time with family, time with self, time seeing God’s creation and seeing family and friends.
My stroke was a wake up call. Genetically, on both sides of my family, strokes were prevalent. My maternal grandmother with a stroke that left her a shell of her former vibrant self and my father who had all the warning signs for a stroke and had a massive stroke st 54 that left him brain dead. I ignored this and was not taking care of my diabetes and blood pressure as I should have. Now I do, 19 pills a day and insulin daily.
I am alive and I choose to live and try to make a difference. I refuse to give up and crawl into a hole and surrender. Although, some days I would like to but I fight that urge.
I am not perfect and gladly admit I am a re-work in progress. But I am God’s creation and He doesn’t make mistakes. He doesn’t mind all my junk in the trunk.
I am not who I was a year ago. Physically it bites. Mentally it is often a struggle. Emotionally it can be a roller coaster. Spiritually it has been an amazing year of growth. I await to see what each coming month has in store for my family, my churches and for me.