Afi and I (Christmas 2007)
My mom’s dad, Afi to me, my siblings, and my cousins, had a stroke in September 1999. He had his stroke while he was out working in the field, he was unable to stop the tractor because the right side of his body had no feeling so he just drove around until my uncles went to check on him because he was gone for so long. He was just driving in circles, unable to help himself…but obviously not wanting to give up on his life yet. He went from being a tough, independent farmer one minute to being a totally different person the next. He was in extremely critical condition for a few weeks and spent some time at Wascana Rehab Centre. After his stroke he had limited use of the right side of his body and he had a hard time talking. He made it through though…he didn’t want to leave yet.
Five years later, to the day, he had his second stroke. It was equally as bad and although we all thought it would be the end, as there was a DNR that meant he would have to come out of this on his own, he pulled through that one as well. His vision in his right eye got worse after this stroke, his right side was even more paralyzed and his speech was further disintegrated. It took him a few years to get to the point where he could go on the lawn tractor in the summer and feel like he was useful in some way. Winters are an extremely hard on him, he hates the cold and doesn’t like to leave the house in the winter. He starts to feel even more low.
He again is going through a tough time, mini strokes and possibly the flu, again the worry is that he won’t pull through this time…
For this reason I decided to watch the video that Robbie recommended on his bl0g, Jill Bolte Taylor’s, my stroke of insight. This video is about her experience as a brain scientist that has a stroke and her recovery from this stroke. It is inspirational and very touching!