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Guest DianneD

stress and stroke

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Guest DianneD

MAJOR, unending stress of caring for my folks for 8 years was the cause of my stroke, as all of my labs turned out to be great and all of the peripheral problems like plaque in arteries were non-existent. I am 3 months post stroke and the cycle of stress continues, just on a new front. Now my parents are cared for by a paid caregiver, and my mother is being such a pain in the derriere that she is about to get them thrown out of the house they are in, which means I need to look at other homes in 114 degree heat (in case they are thrown out), and interview caregivers. My dying father continues to have mini strokes and deteriorates daily, and caring for him has taken on a whole new aspect of care. So, in addition to mediating between the owner (regarding Dad's increased care), the caregiver (regarding conflicts with my mother), and my mother (who sees the whole world as being against her, including ~ and most especially ~ me because I am not at her beck and call all the time), I am desperately trying to keep my own balance. I'm not doing a very good job of it, and come home so drained at the end of any given day that I cannot DO anything, except cry. Rest is out of the question. My sister is out of town and out of reach, so getting help from her is not an option. I have no other family members here I can turn to, and friends don't know what to do to help me, except listen. While that is sometimes helpful, I get so tired I don't even want to talk to anyone at the end of my days. I isolate myself because I just want quiet time.....I don't want any more conflict, even if only in recitation about it. My need for quiet and peacefulness is SO great right now, and all I am doing day in and day out is conflict resolution. Because I am one of the lucky ones who had a TIA with minimal side effects (weakness in legs, exhaustion, and balance issues), I appear to be healthier than I am. I have since had a second TIA about a month ago, which has increased the levels of exhaustion to nearly drop dead proportions.

 

Please, if any of you have been through a stroke caused by stress, and the stress continues even AFTER the stroke, could you share with me how you dealt with it? I don't want to have a third one, and I know for every subsequent one, I get closer to a potentially fatal one.

 

Dianne

 

 

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Hi, Dianne:

 

I feel your pain. I was there about a year and a half ago.

 

I'm a little over two years post (4-30-06), and three months after my stroke, my dad had a massive heart attack in another state. I was guilted by my family to stay with him in the ICU in Marquette, MI because I was the "closest" child distance-wise. It was horrifying because it brought back all the icky feelings of my being in the ICU here in St. Paul. Then, being the child closest to my parents, I had to help them move to Minnesota in Dec. 06--looking for senior housing for them; meanwhile, having panic attacks and suffering from severe exhaustion and two nasty co-workers trying to get me fired. Then, two months later, my mom had brain surgery. Then, I had to have a hysterectomy in October. . .just finished my recovery from that when my dad died the day after Christmas. . .then, I just got laid off my job last week. So, stress central, here.

 

I've dealt with my stress by crying, too. And, when the weather cooperates, I walk a lot and ride my bike (our weather is opposite yours with the cold in winter). I pray and meditate a lot. Do you have a church? Even one good friend you can tell all your troubles to? Is there a stroke support group through your hospital? Another good outlet I found is venting into a journal.

 

Am I angry? Yep. Is that okay? Yep. I cope by taking it a day at a time. . .sometimes, an hour at a time.

 

Okay, but this is about you, not me.

 

Is there a social worker at the home where your parents are? Is your mom jealous of all the attention your dad receives? Is there someone there who might be able to talk to her on a professional level? Is there a way to get your sister to understand that you need her help? You're obviously very strong and responsible, but you can't do it alone. Look for any resources you can because you need to take care of yourself--and taking care of yourself is not being selfish.

 

Feel free to vent to me (or any of us) at any time.

 

Karen

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hi dianne, i am sorry you are having to deal with so much post stroke. i too had alot of stress before and after stroke too. after stroke, i lost my job, had a caregiver helping me i did not like or trust. i lost 2 of my pets that i adored and i lost my mother that i never expected to happen,i wasn't able to be with her before she died, so guilt is with me daily. my family can be a real pain in the butt because they don't understand about stroke. so i had daily battles trying to explain certain things to them. i worry constantly about things. my hubby had a heart attack 2 years before my stroke. i too live in az, so i understand the heat. i am only a phone call away if you would like to talk sometime. (just PM me for my phone number if you'd like). as others have said, you need to care for yourself now, that is priority one. there are many stressors in our lives whether we want them or not and i try to cope as best i can each day. try to relax and not think about them for awhile. i pray each day is better for you. god bless and be well.

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You need to tell Sis, I NEED help and I need it NOW or yyou may be planning 2 funerals..

 

I realize your mom is elderly, and she is "probably " scared, but you may nee to say bluntly to her.. MOM if you don't SHUT UP and be ice to the people who are taking care of you and DAD you may be seperated into different homes... or find yourslef moved to another home.

 

Is there Elder Care in your area maybe someone can go talk to her... It might be good to stay away for a couple days, and just chill and take some time for you.

 

Running around in 114* heat is not good for anyone.

 

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Greetings companion in stress~

 

Sounds like things with your parents continiue to escalate, that's a bummer! Sounds like Diane

you have to to find another source, you can't take all the burden upon your shoulders my friend :hug:

There has to be another soul out there to help! (Not trying to tell you what to do but I do know what

stress does to me.) Makes me start shaking ect.... :juggle: Like Karen asked is there a support group

at a local hospital, church maybe they would have some suggestions. Can you ask their Dr. or yours

what to do? Maybe some tranqualizers or anti-depressants...Just all some thoughts. After my stroke

they had me on Zoloft for a year then they took me off slowly. #1 is you right now!!!! If you get worse

then what would your parents do?

 

Diane wish I could just blink my eyes and have you arrive and sit with me out on this deck at the condo

my family is at. It's so beautiful! I love boats and I sit here and watch them come and go all day....

You take care of yourself and keep us posted if you find some help...There has to be some help some-

where...I'll be praying to that end..This tempoary life seems to be full of challenges neverending and

testings beyond our control. Take care my friend..God bless you~Nancy

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Guest DianneD

Thanks to all of you for your replies. There is no social worker at the house, and the caregiver and my mother are VERY similar personalities, which is why they clash so easily. I have no bike, and cannot walk farther than about 100 feet without falling, and even if I COULD get out, I would die from the heat here. It's a killer......

 

Shadow (Karen) ~ as I was reading your stresses, my heart just broke for you. SO much for you to handle at a time when you are overwhelmed with trying to take care of yourself. Bless your heart. I do not belong to an organized religion, though am quite strong spiritually (it's what has kept me going when nothing else does). My closest and dearest friend is on a 2 month vacation in England, and won't be home (in Australia) until next week (and then will be laid out with jet lag for a week). The hospital stroke support group disbanded for the summer months (May, June, July, August) because no one wants to come in the heat (understandable) and will meet again in September. Still a LONG ways away. Mom IS a bit jealous of all the attention Dad gets from hospice, but it's that she can't have a bloody servant all the time at her beck and call that makes her really mad. The caregiver rightfully cannot devote as much time to Mom as she would like, and has had to draw the line in the sand so to speak. As to my sister, she went on a week's camping trip where there is NO cellphone access, so that right there tells me pretty strongly, she doesn't want to be contacted. She KNOWS how much I need her care and her help, but I think she is royally tired of it, and is recharging her batteries by skipping off to go camping out of reach.

 

Kimmie (Kim) ~ thank you for the offer of a phone call......will PM you later. You dear soul, you had SO much loss in such a short time......however did you manage to handle it and the losses brought on by stroke at the same time?

 

Bonnie ~ I had that conversation with Mom last night and reiterated it this morning with her by email. I got back a note from her, asking for input on a letter she wants to write the caregiver, by way of making inroads toward understanding between them, so there is a possibility of at least resolving the constant fighting issue......fingers crossed. As far as my sister is concerned, I have to wait for her to come back home before I can ask for her help.

 

Nancy ~ you're sitting on a deck overlooking water???? and you didn't take ME???????? what kind of friend are you??? I am so glad you are having a lovely day on your deck, enjoying the sights around you. I can close my eyes and almost wish myself there. I am SUCH a water person........sitting on the beach, watching the ocean is like the biggest tranquilizer for me. I never sleep so good as when I am near water.

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Guest DianneD

some good news to share........I spelled out what the consequences of her actions would be to my mother in an email so she would read it and not argue with everything I said while sitting there and speaking with her, and she actually took it to heart!!!!!!! WOOHOO!!! She wrote a kind letter to the caregiver, saying why she had reacted the way she did, and told her the things she liked about her. YAY MOM!!! So today's fires were minor, and easily extinguished. How long this will last is anyone's guess, but I am just grateful she took the initiative and recognized that if she wants to stay there, she had better straighten up and fly right. Didn't have to go look at houses today in the heat........whew!!! :Clap-Hands:

 

Dianne

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Dianne - I sent you a PM for a referral for services for your parents in case they disrupt at their current placement. I hope you don't need it, but hang on to it!

 

 

Rene

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I don't know whether or not you might be interested, but stress is what caused my stroke. I am still unable to walk without a walker or cane, but am determined to get on with my life so I have been studying a lot of books while looking for answers. Right now I am reading Spontaneous Healing of Belief and trying to get a handle on how and what I believe deep down and changing some of what I am telling myself that is detrimental. Hope this info might help you.

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Guest DianneD

Thanks, Northernstars......I am always open to anything that will improve my life. I just received in the mail a book I obviously ordered, but can't remember ordering, about Conquering Stroke. thanks for sharing the book's name.....

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Dianne ~

 

I'm sooo happy to hear things are going smooth for now! You are here with me Dianne in my heart. :cocktail:

I hope things continue to go well for you. Stress plays a big part in life with me, I have to keep an anchor

on it at times, since my stroke, seems like i'm more vulnerable to certain events and sensitive. That's amazing

what your Mom did writing the caregiver. :cheer: And your able to commuicate with her on a computer? She must

be well enough to have that ability...That's a good way to keep communication with your Mom as to keep you

out of the heat. You take care now my friend...Nancy

 

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