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self-pity and fear



Good morning all! I have been hearing an awful lot of complaints and questions about anxiety, fear, and depression. There was a visitor to chat yesterday who said she had bad days and worse days and complained about having only one hand. One fellow member says he is afraid to be alone.


IT'S ALL IN YOUR ATTITUDE FOLKS! Yes, depression is real and can really hurt you and fear can cripple you but, only if you let them. You also have to recognize the difference between self pity and depression or real and imagined fear.


We all lost a lot when we had our strokes; life isn't fair. Who said it would be? Many of us can only use one hand now but, we still have a good hand which means we are not helpless. Most have family and friends for help and support plus, ain't technology wonderful?! One member types with her breath, they are working on eye movement to control a keyboard or a robot. There are machines for phone calls, reading, vacuuming, dish washing, etc. You can go online and buy anything from a bedrail to a home TENS machine to help you and help you get better and have it delivered to your door.


Instead of wallowing in your misfortune and whining about it (occasionally is fine), look at what you do have, try to help others, have fun buying a new wardrobe and helpful gadgets, keep busy, and ask for help when you really need it but, try to do it yourself first. It may take several (many) attempts before you succeed but, think how proud you will be when you do. When you do, reward yourself.


If you're gripped by fear, think...is it fear or cowardice? Are you afraid to try or is it something truly bad? Falling isn't as bad as you think it is. You will only fall about 3 feet NOT off a roof! Plan for it...where can I help myself get up, what can I use to do it? Got a set of stairs or steps? Perfect! You can lift yourself up a foot at a time but 30 inches will be too much. A bed or couch - you can flop onto them. Again, it will take several tries before you master it but, you will have done it! You can drag yourself to them. You can practice when you are not alone.


Keep a medical alert or your phone handy in case you do need to summon help. Keep it on you or on a low table or chair where you can reach it from the floor. Set up the things you need for YOUR convenience and BE CAREFUL. Learn not to overreach and provide safety "nets" (I block the outside door with a broom handle to prevent falling out), use wall walking or wall butting to help you balance, get good with that wc, get a more compact model, if you need to.


Try not to burden others with your needs anymore than necessary , tell them how much you appreciate their help and love (they need to hear it), be cheerful even when it's hard. Mostly, remember what Pogo said: "We have met the enemy and it is us." Now, stop fearing what doesn't have teeth and get busy being positive! PS: get a pet!...Great medicine!


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Sally, you have said a mouth full and I agree. Attitudes, self pity and why me? can get you down in a "New York minute", that's real fast if and when you let yourself do it!


I got wounded soldiers here with missing legs, arms, hands they will never get back from Iraq or Afghanistan and they have learned to not complain because they are alive and back with family and their young kids.


Most of them are just young kids but joined the Services to fight for their country and they never look back and ask themselves "Why they did it". I'm a veteran myself but have learned to live with what I got left and my family.


There is nothing to fear except fear itself!

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I salute you and those kids for your generous gift to the rest of us. O\


I had a roomie whose favorite words were "I can't" and her injury was not impairing. I would rather be around the guys you were with.

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You got it right on the button. And the ones that whine on here just need to read this entry and understand how much worse they could have it

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Sally --- ummm i would like your advise to be put into a pill form and i would like to make my husband take a dose of it...

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Hey Sally.....Excellent insight! When I had my 2 strokes I was age 34, couldn't whine at all during first year because I couldn't speak, couldn't whine 2nd year because I only learned a very small vocabulary, but by year 3 whoa! I was "why me" "why did I waste all that money on a University education" "why did I put in 18 hours a day 7 days a week on French Immersion" etc. etc. etc.


My very smart dad suggested I try volunteer work at a long term care facility close to my home (not a facility for seniors, but for persons with special needs (including a large number with severe brain injury). Best thing that ever happened to me, it didn't matter that I had problems with short-term memory, delayed recall, and speech....heck, I fit right in. And the poor, poor me changed immediately to lucky, lucky me. It made me realize that could have been me living in an institution, so no more why me's, just grateful that I could live in my own home with some assistance.


So anyone who whines, try thinking: If the world didn't suck, we'd all fall off (LOL)


Smiles, Lin

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