This series of blogs isn’t meant to elicit sympathy but hopefully to inform and create awareness. Thank you in advance for your thoughts.
I generally don’t put truly person information on things like Facebook. Why? Because they are exactly that personal. You will never see my relationship status, as I choose to keep that personal. Those who need to know, know. I also don’t tend to put anything to do with my health. Again, personal. However, a recent question regarding a post I did make resulted in me advising people on Facebook about my stroke. Part of the reason I don’t post things like this there, is because I’m not looking for an outpouring of sympathy and I am certainly not playing the “poor me” card. I take what life throws at me and push my way through it, which can be detrimental in some ways.
I’ve had people make comments regarding how I look since the stroke (for those who haven’t seen me – I look and act the same as before). This being said, because I don’t look like anything happened to me, it’s hard for others to comprehend how it affects your brain. For me, my vision is the big thing. No, I’m visually impaired or anything, but the neurological pathways are still rebuilding themselves and my eyes struggle to focus sometimes. Reading, and things close up, are still an issue. Driving, or sitting in a group of people and trying to focus on different faces, also an issue. Sure, I can do both, but it’s tiring and, while I don’t get a headache from it anymore, I can certainly feel the strain as my eyes work to do what they did naturally just four weeks ago.
When I left the hospital, they gave me an information package on stroke recovery. Four weeks later and I’m just starting to read through it because again, I’m unique. The majority of the information in this package doesn’t apply to me. I was advised I needed no rehab in any way, and it’s just a matter of time to allow the pathways to repair themselves. This is why I’m trying to blog every couple of days, to help my eyes relearn those pathways.
Part of the package lists signs of a stroke;
Weakness – Sudden loss of strength or sudden numbness in the face, arm or leg, even if temporary.
Trouble speaking – Sudden difficulty speaking or understanding or sudden confusion, even if temporary.
Vision problems – Sudden trouble with vision, even if temporary.
Headache – Sudden severe and unusual headache.
Dizziness – Sudden loss of balance, especially with any of the above signs.
OK, so here’s where it gets tricky; I had dizziness, headache and vision problems, but it was all put down to vertigo (which I’ve had before with an inner ear infection). My previous vertigo only lasted a day or so but I know people who have a version that lasts days, so I figured I’d moved on to that type. I was assessed with an inner ear infection – I’ll be looking into that assessment further as I get through my healing -so a stroke was the furthest thing from my mind.
My first post on this issue advised that I believe the stroke happened on July 25th. I’d have the dizziness, nausea and headache, for 11 days by this time, and it had been assumed it was all due to the vertigo. The afternoon of the July 25th I had been given a prescription provided to those with Persistent Onset Vertigo and I was waiting for that to kick in. This is when the ongoing nausea became suddenly overwhelming and I actually did get sick. Then, no more nausea. I was still off balance, dizzy and had the headache.
To those not familiar with vertigo; https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vertigo