The Day My World Stopped

The staff at Rehab was great, but I never want to go there again

The people at Rehab were great, but I don’t want to go there again

358°  February 4, 2012, my brain decided to teach me about how it works. A clot found its way to my brain stem and killed a small area of cells. The lesson was apparently meant to show how a few cells in the brain stem control the messages sent between the body and brain. It was a class I hadn’t signed up for, but I had to pass.

Changing altitude is easy until your body is talking to your brain

Changing altitude is easy until your body isn’t talking to your brain

182°  It’s hard to believe that messages for walking, swallowing, pain sensation, and vision all flow through a small area in the base of the brain, but they do. It took a week before I was allowed to eat any food. Walking without the aid of a walker or cane took over a month. Vision took six months or more to return to normal. I still have a lack of sensation on my left side of my body and the right side of my face. 

This gentle slope might as well been an Olympic downhill run for me

This gentle slope might as well been an Olympic downhill run for me

201°  The brain/body battle was almost comical. My brain knew I was leaning 45° to starboard, so it would tell my body to lean 45° to starboard. After about two weeks in Rehab my Physical Therapist took me for walks outside with a walker or cane, but I would sometimes struggle to stay on a sidewalk with a gentle slope.

Salt on sidewalks. I never noticed it until walking on it became part of a balancing act

Salt on sidewalks. I didn’t noticed it until walking on it became part of a balancing act

102°  The timing of the stroke was cruel. It was on our wedding anniversary and at a birthday party for a six-year-old. Birthday parties around this time of year, as well as our anniversary, serve to bring back memories of the Rehab hospital and how in a matter of hours my life came to a crashing stop for weeks. 

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