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first solo trip since stroke.. but with no glasses


ksmith

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Not too bad overall.

 

Well this past week I did what I didn’t think I could do since my stroke… I travelled alone. My travel included going on an airplane and managing my hotel stay for 7 days and all the trimmings. I knew that it would be somewhat nerve racking but what I didn’t except was how accommodating everyone was and helpful and reassured me that everything would be okay.

  My trip began with my mother, who was more nervous I truly was, taking me to the airport in Philadelphia. She initially was going to drop me off but she wanted to make sure that I would have assistance getting from gate to gate. I truly don’t remember how I made it to the gate in Philadelphia but everything worked out. Oh, I forgot to tell you, I had gone to the neuro-surgeon two days before my trip and gave me a new prescription for new glasses and they were not ready by the time I left so I was struggling to see… anything.  Back to the airport... I asked a fellow passenger to help me read the aisles. She was a pleasant woman and agreed to help me find my row. I made sure to always get and aisle seat so easy in, easy out. The plane was soooo small.  I hadn’t flown for about fifteen years and since then I’ve had a stroke and my phobias have gotten worse and mainly because my eyesight is hindered.  I made sure to pack my tablet and charged phone to keep myself busy. Thankfully on Delta we had free Wi-Fi that allowed us to watch a selection of movies. So that was great and kept my mind off of thought of being in an enclosed piece metal high in the sky. Yes… I thought of that and again mainly for I couldn’t see correctly. So, on wards to Atlanta, Georgia. That airport is HUGE. And much of this trip is a blur for …yes… my eyesight. Thankfully, I was met at the gate by someone with a wheel chair. THANKFULLY she brought me to the correct gate for it seemed we took a shuttle train and, I think for all I could see was lights and colors, restaurants and retail stores. I told the person pushing me I felt like I was in a mall and not an airport. Moreover the kind wheelchair pushers were some of the kindest folks I’ve ever met. I know some say that they are paid to be nice. Well that may be true, but you just get a vibe from someone who is genuine.  I was pushed to gate and had a three hour wait so I was minding my own business when I heard a gentleman sitting next to me talk out loud and I acknowledged his comment. The next thing I knew he had moved next to me and began sharing his dilemma he was having. Had to do with racing corvettes and his new wife who wants him to ease down on the racing and travel with her. Some things that he was talking about I had some clue of but mainly I just nodded and smiled. He truly was a very nice man who lived in my state so we had common grounds to share. The next thing I knew, our layover was over and we began to board. When we life Atlanta, I forgot the flight to Daytona Beach, FL. I told my son to come and find me for it was dark and I was totally blind by then.

 

                                                        He found me!!

 

It felt good to do all of these things on my own. I had no worries checking in. Other people were upset for it was taking too long and I was in a time frame and I had no sleep the night before but there was only one girl working and she was doing her best, I knew I already reserved it so I was ok. I found that when you chillax good things happen. The issue was the hotel was closing down a floor to do a ‘face life’ for they are on the coast and its hurricane season so many hotels/motels along the coast do get damaged often. Lo and behold I was given a room that was one of the ones that were set to get fixed but she changed the floors to start but the room had its downside: many things didn’t work (refrigerator was biggie to name a few) deck door didn’t close correctly, tub had an angle to it. That being I really wanted just a bed, a pool and my son and two out of three isn’t bad. My son had to work really bizarre hours. I was happy he was working but he truly was working too much.

  Because I had no car visiting people was out of the question but my son’s grandparents picked me up and brought me over to their house to visit and that’s where my son is living. They are absolutely wonderful couple. I dated their son when I was younger that produced my son. So we did some shopping at the thrift stores, some of my favorite kind if shopping. I had to keep my purchases to a minimal to fit in my suitcase.

I did get to see my son and two other friends who live close to where I was staying.  We visited a Japanese Steak House and had a fantastic meal and great show from the chef.

 

I was so thankful that everyone I came in to contact with throughout my trip was fantastic and helpful. I met a gentleman at the Daytona Airport on my flight home who said he would walk with me and help e to the gate for he was going to Atlanta, Ga for his connection flight. I lost him on the plane for he sat behind me some and when I got off a wheelchair whisked me away through the “Mall” that is Atlanta International Airport.

 

What I learned is I’m able to do many things when I have assistance and it’s ok to ask for help. I really don’t like to ask and who knows what I can do when I can actually see. My glasses were finally ready two days before I was to fly home.

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Yay, Kelli, you did it!!  Unfortunate about the glasses and hotel though.  Next time!  I agree with you 100% about chilling out; it seems to me that the people who get harried and fussy and loud aren't really enjoying anything.

 

My eyes lit up when I read that you went to a Japanese restaurant.  I love, love, love Japanese restaurants......food is so great, and the setting is entertaining!

 

Good thing that you weren't interested in shopping in the airports; so expensive.

 

"What I learned is I’m able to do many things when I have assistance and it’s ok to ask for help. I really don’t like to ask"  Definitely, it's ok to ask for help; when others ask you for help, you're always there.  Remember that saying: "You get what you give".  

 

I'm so glad you stuck with your plan to try this!  Congrats, Kelli

 

                                       Strength shows not only in the ability to persist, but the ability to start over

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You are a Wonderwoman Kelli, so confident and with patience to overcome the hurdles. That trip would be s a big task even for those who are able bodied and well sighted.  You are one of the people on here who really inspire me.  (((hugs)))

 

Sue.

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Hi Kelli, So glad you did this.  My first alone plane trip after the stroke was scary but successful too and since then I've been overseas twice.  You are so right that it's OK to ask for help and in fact many people offer it unasked. And there's no point in stressing so long as you have your phone and someone you can call if it all goes truly pear shaped.

Next time will be easier.  If you can do this without your glasses, think what you can do once you have them!

 

Onwards and upwards!! :cheers:

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Kelli 

 

you are one gutsy woman I knew it you can do it and going to have wonderful time. I have found usually people are very nice and everybody loves positive young brave woman. You attract that positivity I can't believe you had so much fun without your glasses think how much more fun you will have with your glasses next time Ken looks so much like his dad 

 

Asha

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awe thank you guys but I know all of you can/could do the same.. you're never alone.. If you request  assistance.. an attendant will meet you in front of plane or help you into seat and tzke you to next gate or baggage.. You guys kicked stroke's arse , either yourself or loved on, so you can do this xx:wink:

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