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Stroke Survivor - male
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About larrymm

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    Associate Member
  • Birthday 08/29/1966

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  • Stroke Anniversary (first stroke)
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  1. Happy Anniversary larrymm!

  2. Happy Anniversary larrymm!

  3. larrymm

    I don't have a laptop - I use a desktop at home and work. The laptop would be more convenient, I agree, if you can afford it and have a wireless network in your home. I have some cognitive issues too. I don't have anyone to "buffer" me, so I am learning to compensate by going slower and doing my best to think something over multiple times. This can be hard as part of me still wants to operate at 100 MPH but I can't think that fast anymore. I can be impulsive sometimes. I can be forgetful. I have posted on here about forgetting to pay bills sometimes. I just leased a car without fully thinking it through. I am managing though. Larry
  4. larrymm

    Dear Ross, I was out of town this weekend and just got in. I am very sorry to hear the news. That's awful. My heart goes out to you and the boys. Larry
  5. larrymm

    Right after my stroke I also had double vision which made PT and OT *interesting*. Luckily, it cleared up on its own in about 3 weeks. I now only have a very small amount of double vision to my extreme left. I still have trouble reading something that I just glance at (think the gas price at a gas station while I'm on the highway driving past). This has to do with my ability to focus on something when I need to see it in detail. When driving, you have to focus quickly and read, all while driving. This has gotten better from not being able to do it at all 4 years ago to being able to do it about 40% of the time now. Usually, I can focus on the detail but, on fairly rare occasions, I simply cannot. Since it also takes me longer to focus on something, I can no longer make surrupticious glances at the ladies (it appears that I am leering although that's not at all what I'm doing). :wicked: Larry
  6. larrymm

    I want to say "thank you very much" to all those who have replied. Larry
  7. larrymm

    Thanks to all who have replied. The answer to this seems to revolve around acceptance - how do you accept the new you? I know that if I don't find some way to acceptance, this stroke will rule all my thoughts until I die. I truly want to get there, but, obviously, I am having difficulty. What I have read on here is that, for most people, the road to acceptance was a very personal one. For those that are willing to share, how did you "get there"? Also, FYI - I am single and not a churchgoer. Thanks, Larry
  8. I had my stroke 4 years ago (almost to the day). I have realized I don't like myself all that much. True, I feel I am a good person but I am not proud of who I am now. Needless to say, my self-esteem is doing wonderful. :yeahrite: I know this feeling about myself impacts all my relationships (romantic or not). I want (need) to fix it. I am finding that how I view myself is a lot different than how others view me. The people who knew me before the stroke (BS), they think I am doing very well. Yes, they do know that I have my hardships, but that I am doing well. The people that didn't know me BS are, by and large, very understanding and accomodating. I have never experienced the rudeness that some people on this board have mentioned (thank goodness). I know that we are our own worst critic, so I allow for that in my thinking. However, I can't help but think that there is this absolutely huge disconnect between how I view myself vs. how others view me. The things I deal with on a daily basis make me think "who would like to be with someone who does <xyz>?" Then I am told that a lot of people don't care a whole lot about <xyz>. So, the simple fact that I think that doing <xyz> is a huge deal and most people don't tells me that either (a) I'm being much too hard on myself; or (b) that I'm not expressing my difficulties well (of which doing <xyz> is one). OK, how do I know which is the problem? If it's the former, how do I go about fixing that? If it's the latter, how do you go about communicating better? Yes, my communication has improved greatly in 4 years, but I don't want to wait "x" more years to communicate this particular issue. As it is, I leave every conversation with the feeling that we didn't truly "connect". To feel that way about every verbal interaction in 4 years just plain s****. Does anyone identify with what I am feeling/saying or am I off-base here? And, not to be harsh here, but I would really not like to hear the "you should be proud to be alive" thing. If that's true though, then maybe my root issue is that I don't value life enough. If that's the case, how do you fix that one? Larry
  9. I am still around. I usually log in here twice a day to read the new posts. However, I don't post much either so I guess that qualifies me for "lurker" status as well. :big_grin: Larry
  10. I agree with Joe. A stroke is fundamentally different than many other conditions as Joe alluded to. I have no problem telling people I had a stroke if the situation calls for it. However, the difficulty I run into is that people often don't know anything about strokes so I usually don't tell them. I am probably their only direct contact with stroke. True, people are very nice and make allowances for many things (speech, movement, thinking, etc.), but they don't know what to do beyond that. Sadly, I don't have any great suggestions for them either. I think the "shame" thing is more evident in those survivors who have memory of who they were before and want to be, to a degree, like that again. For me, I am striving to be as much as I used to, even though I know I will never be, because each little part I get back of how I used to be is a little bit of who I am. I have read on here many times to not let the stroke define who you are. Well, to me anyway, getting back to who I "was" is not letting the stroke define me. I just realized something. While this thing may be understandable, when you're going through this process (because it is so lengthy due to how long it takes a person to recover an ability) the stroke *does* define you. Is there a way to not go through this process and still try to recover who you were? Do I feel the isolation that others have mentioned? Yes. Do I feel the frustration with communication? Yes. Why do I keep doing what I'm doing? I don't know - genetics maybe? Larry
  11. Hi Robyn, I feel very sorry for you right now. All I can do is speak from a survivor's perspective, but I can relate to a lot of the words others have written to you already. This is basically me in a nutshell. Before the stroke, I used my various "abilities" to basically avoid relationships. Now, because I don't have those "abilities", I have no capability to lie (white or otherwise) or sugarcoat anything. It is what it is. I used to joke with my sister that the doctors cut out my tact when I had my brain surgery. Blunt honesty? I had heard of it before but I think I give that a new meaning now. What I am saying is that everything takes effort/energy, pre-stroke and post-stroke. One might have done something pre-stroke and, since energy was a lot "easier" to come by, one was able to do it. In a post-stroke world, one has a finite amount of energy to go around and one realizes one doesn't have the energy to do that particular thing. So, one does the basics instead (there comes the brutal honesty). I used to feel there were lots of things I didn't want to have happen (due to embarassment or whatever). Now, that list is infinitely shorter. I tend to look at things as if I don't do X, will the world stop spinning? No. Unfortunately, whenever I use that logic I always end up with the same answer, so it's not always helpful. Side note: this is not good for people in general but it does have its uses. Thankfully, I have more things I would not like to have happen now as time goes on. A quick example for those who are wondering what I am talking about: having an "accident" in your pants. Desirable? No, but will the world stop spinning? No also. So, in the end, life will go on, you just may have a few people to explain things to... I do know that, especially right after the stroke, I just had no capability to deal with others. Relationship? Out of the question. The ultimate ME mode. Like others have said before, people who had strokes initially go into survival mode. And you have the ME mentality to deal with too. The ME mentality tends to go away when people who have the capability post-stroke to empathize (some do, some don't) are shown (in a nice way and after they're past survival mode) that it isn't all about them. I don't know about everyone but that's how it was for me. Ultimately, what I'm saying is you can't depend on what a survivor says early on. I can't speak for other survivors, but if you asked me what color the sky was when I was two months post-stroke and asked me again two years post-stroke, the odds of me saying "blue" would go from 75% (two months) to over 95% (two years). And this is a question with no emotional content. I would imagine the percentages would be lower in that case but you would still see a great rise over time. And I do agree about the "crumb" thing, but I would weigh it heavily with a grain of salt. Sorry for the rambling... Larry
  12. larrymm

    Hi Robyn, Welcome to the site. There may be no-one in your exact situation here, but there are many threads on here about many of the issues you raised in your post. I have read about people being very close but not having the medical stuff done or not being married and the heartache that brings. I have read about survivors changing their emotions (being in love, not being in love, crying, not crying, etc.). What you need to remember is that, while things have changed for both of you, life still goes on for both of you. It's just different now (I know, easy to say). I really feel for you. You may have felt a little "on the outside looking in" before, but there is nothing like a medical crisis to bring everyone's feelings to the surface. You must have it hard. But, as I said, there will be many others on here who can relate to at least a part of what you said (or most or maybe all of it!), so I wouldn't be too surprised to get other replies in a short while. Just hang in there and do the best you can in this difficult situation. Larry Stroked on 5/21/2003 Grew up on Cape Cod but now living near St. Louis
  13. larrymm

    This is a very timely topic. I don't spend much brain energy thinking about God this or God that, but maybe I should. I don't know... I know that all my tomorrows will be "another day" unless I make them not that way. I am three years out and I still look at tomorrow as just another day. What I need to do is create one or more dreams to put in those tomorrows, so I'll have something to look forward to. I am not at all happy with this life right now and my only option is to change it. Creation of new dreams after what we went through is not easy at all, since almost all those dreams were based on many things the stroke took away and any new dreams are based on who you are now (which we may not be all that thrilled with). OK, so I may know that this is a possible solution, but it is one thing to know something and something entirely else to do it. FYI - I don't mean to offend anyone, but I don't believe in the thought that I am a "survivor" should make me happy. To me, all it means is that I beat the odds. I suspect that (for several of us) all it does is make others around you a lot happier. Question: for those of you that made new dreams, what process worked for you? Larry
  14. larrymm

    I know you all have posted about having carotid dissections, but mine was a vertebral dissection and they don't know what caused it. Larry
  15. larrymm

    Thanks to all who have replied. I am thinking it is mainly the men who are driven by outward appearances, evolution-wise. Now that I think about it, I remember the show said men and women are both driven by evolutionary instincts when searching for a mate, just that men and women are looking for different things. Men usually look at the external first then the internal and women, while they may look at the external first, they place far more emphasis on the internal than men do (thank goodness!). I can only be who I can be. No more and no less. I agree with you, Sue, there is someone for everyone. Larry