• entries
  • comments
  • views




I have previously mentioned that I have a reclusive nature, but since the stroke I am beginning to realize my perception of my reclusievness was more personal choice than I was admitting to myself.

Now, post-stroke, with my newly acquired limitations of dexterity, I am faced with more a forced state of semi-isolation.


It's an eyeball opener.


I realize now that pre-stroke I still had the choice at any time to venture forth into society, but now that is not the case.  Now I am dependent on a driver to leave home property, and even though I most move freely at home without assistance of cane most of the time hobbling, limping and gimping about, that I lack the nerve or confidence doing so in public.


Thus I rarely go to any location that does not have the little handicapped scooter/cart thingamajiggy.  I do really enjoy these thrice monthly excursions with my sister, but otherwise I rarely anymore leave my room at all other than a few times a week venturing out front to the driveway, which is expansive, and sitting on the veranda just watching nature.


In my room I sit most of the day in front of the window getting plenty of sunshine and fresh air, but little physical exercise..


I have ordered all these physical rehabilitation aides that I never use but I do try to use my hand as much as I can.


Problem is I don't know if I'm coming or going anymore because my schedule has been so compromised.  My sleeps routine has turned into a veritable *beep* show and it is, I have to admit, dragging my spirits down low.  The recent high profile suicides lay heavy on my mind, because I can so relate to the conditions precipitating these sad endings of life.


The only way I can get a restful sleep is to finally in the wee hours of darkness submit to the swallowing of a portion of a Trazadone, maybe half a Vicodin and a muscle re;azer then talking to the magic dragon.


This typically knocks me out until my regular schedule begins with my sister bringing me my every morning two eggs/ smokey link sausage and toast w/jelly and a glass of ice milk.


This rant, if you have not yet figured it out, submitted at 3;30am-ish, is a prelude to my consumption of above and respite from insomnia.


Oi Vey, as they say in the motion picture machines


Recommended Comments

It sounds like you are just about ready to kick yourself in the ass and decide to make a change. It's not easy to do and there's not much point until you are ready to do it.  Remember start small and make a little change each day, and find ways to reward "good behaviour".  Maybe use that expansive driveway to practice your walking and build your confidence.  1 lap of the driveway allows you 15 minutes on the verandah doing nothing. and then build it up a little each day as you feel up to it.  The more exercise you do the easier it becomes and the better your mood will be, both because you are actually moving and because you are taking charge again.  Also if you can get yourself moving again the insomnia should be less of an issue.


Hoping you can find the mental strength to make the changes that are necessary for getting on with life after it's kicked you in the guts.


Link to comment

Oh man have I felt your grief in the past 3 years at times. In fact I just wrote in my blog how I actually went to sleep and slept through the night like sorta normal except it was more like 12 hours. The last 6 months my sleep has been an entity of it's own. I also remember riding in I call them rolly carts...It meant some freedom but I still was a vertigo mess (lol I probably needed a license to drive one back then). I was a bit of a social butterfly before the stroke and went to a tortured place where I was afraid to leave my house and then to just specific places. It took a long time for me to venture out more and more (believe me I'm still a homebody after 3 years post). I did though, eventually. One thing that helped me I guess not be so hard on myself was finding projects around my house. I decluttered my entire home (this took me over a month working about 10 mins. at a time before resting or napping and then I'd get to it again). I also took all the grass out from around my front porch/shrubs and put down pretty mulch. OMG this took so much out of me. I worked outside for 5-10 minutes and then layed down or napped in between. It also took more than a month. I made myself focus on these things...I really did MAKE myself focus and it was hard but man I felt such accomplishment once I finished. Projects can be anything that you can or want to do within your current physical status but they still may be really hard but for me it helped to work on these. I also have a question since I read your post...have you had or do you have outpatient OT, PT, or Speech therapies? If you are just working on this yourself I know there are a lot of places (online or just from your Doctor) where you can get detailed therapies for where you are at in your recovery. I know sometimes people just can't "go" to these therapies for several reasons but if you can then I would in a heartbeat. I felt so defeated when my PT told me to go to the store and use a cart to walk behind not the rolly cart. She said only go as long as my body says ok and then stop and go rest. :scared:I hated this. There were many times when I worked on therapies that I hated it. It was hard. Stroke is hard when you are recovering and can be hard for a very long time for many. Just know you are not alone we are here and we hear similar issues many of us experienced or experience. Keep on ranting it's ok. Get it out. :smile:Tracy

Link to comment

This was the hardest project I've ever done! It took like a month and a half and my daughter helped carry those bags of mulch. I was so proud when I finished.


Link to comment

Tracy :


your yard looks looks so beautiful with that red mulch. yard work is hard work I can't do so that is assigned job of hubby, I try to do what I can do inside home.



I remember how I felt right after my stroke  for first 9 months, I did not see reason to get out of bed if I am not supposed to go to work, & do things at home, since hubby hired full time help at our home to take care of our young child, & that added more to my depression I felt I got replaced by paid nanny, my recovery started once I started driving only local, & found this support group & got rid of help & started taking care of things at home, which included preparing lunchbox for our son so getting up early & once I started having routine in my life, my whole outlook on life changed, so I realized happiness is a choice. & I choose happiness over all negative thoughts.






Link to comment

Asha I really feel you hit the nail on the head. Having a stroke is almost or is a mourning process. We each mourn differently but one thing that everyone gets to is getting over that hump and coming down the other side. It probably changes us forever but I think so many can learn strength. Thanks for your point of view it is always positive and inspiring.

Link to comment

I believe that some people cannot choose happiness, they often have all money can buy, child who loves them, respect and admiration...but pain inside is so great they are willing to suffer physically give up all pleasures in life they can afford, maybe they get bored with it all but then they choose death, which baffles the rest of us who struggle to survive. so my point is,if you cannot wish the dark thoughts away please try meds because we need not suffer mentally or physically despite stigma and it may take trial and error to find the correct med, dosage, etc...but relief will come. Shop for a doc who is compassionate.they exist somewhere. I picked a neurologist who is that department chair. His soft spoken gentle manner, his direct honesty, thorough explanations....anyway the things that fit with what I need...but then my pain med doc is loud,upbeat lol and again fits.....took me a while to find a doc that is my PC, and the office knows my quirks and the doc gives me a 40 min appointment when I go because I am complicated care they describe it....all I know is I finally feel I found trusted docs.....now imagine how important task is to find any psycho doc or therapist.

I did not have a choice when I went to a pain psychologist as part of work up for the electrode possibility.

I did not think I would like a support group but hey I did,I do, we had a kick off summer party today, food with talking works even better.  


Anyway point is that try options, no shame.

I tried cymbalta expecting great things,but the numbness I felt was excruciating and it made me feel weird thinking weird and it was scary so I stopped and went back to normal. It did not help pain as well as other stuff so I manage my grief,loss, saddness etc...but I do not have that deep pain of bipolar depression that takes way functioning and convinces your thinking toward the dark side.

So, I get it though why some prefer not to take their medicine, but omg the alternative sometimes feels like no choice...then it is time for your doc to know so they can try another drug trial.

And those are horrible no matter what you try to treat....I am a rash person...I get a bag full of different creams....and I like to squeeze those ugly tubes into old empty pretty face cream jars. What can I say...I like my world to surround me with prettiness. Even though I still live in a nursing home...maybe because I do.....so I cover my walls wt my art, store things in pretty tote bags, and decorated a box I use to store my shoeboxes..... I put up a wall of cards I have recieved.....and my son made a canvas picture out of a pic I took with my phone when we stopped by Pizmo Beach on one of our Road trips to Monterey CA, the most pretty beach pier photo with a swingset in the sand. When I look at it, I am transported to that crisp winter cold but sunny day, feel that breeze, that warm sun too bright, and looking at the stairs off the pier leading to the sand to that swingset...and I imagine feet soaring towards the wispy clouds in the sky, just like I used to do. Honestly I would hop on a swingset even when I was adult, never again now because of balance......but imagination is life too. that picture..... ah I learned some beaches have special beach wheelchairs...

I wonder if I held a sign if volunteers would walk me down the beach and then back...


and So I want to do water therapy, not just for exercise ,but for the calm that water does. Even a shower, or even a washcloth and basin is soothing when I hurt.


I think it is all about coping, including choosing happy...guess that is why I make collages about.."these are a few of my favorite things"....


but pain can transport you to a no mans land,colors are all off, and I cannot catch my breath, 

and I know this is a weird version of me,not a real me,yet an integrated me.


I bet lots of us has wrestled the dark thoughts thing, battle it often, but survivors survive, caregivers take care of......but if it becomes too much alone, then call for the team, try options, owe it to yourself to get those dark glasses off and see the beauty.


For some, I believe a gratitude list cannot chase and shake of that bitter death shadow. No excuse, no explaination, no same,no guilt, just ask for help because who you are makes a difference

...literally google ...  who i am makes a difference.com,no spaces. The blue ribbon story and project.


the world is better with you, 

I wear a charm, on a necklace of something that reminds me of this,maybe I do not work anymore, but maybe I can be a resource for others I just come across in a waiting room. This necklace reminds me and helps me cope.


I keep a bag of stuff to help me with crisis days. I could list stuff but one thing is coloring books. Someone suggested and it is true...the brain cannot multitask if something is not automatic so thinking about problems and the task of planning and choosing colors and coloring...well doing one makes it hard to do the other.



0so I believe choose life...which may not always be happy, but I can cope with pain with help.

Link to comment



your 2nd stroke wasn't that long ago.  I'm sure as with the 1st, once you get a routine with yourself , after some time you were able to do more than you thought.  I can understand not having the confidence to go out and that is a hard hurdle , I know It was with me, however I finally came to the realization that I'm not going to be happy unless I say "F-it" I'm doing this. My therapist once told me, which is true, we are our own worst enemy within our heads. She said imagine walking into a restaurant. We "know" everyone is looking at us and judging us. The reality is they are so consumed with their own lives that they may look up at us and continue to talk about their issues.  I know I hated going out. I had a bus system call C.A.T.S  ( Cumberland County Transportation Service), named for the county I lived in, that services the elderly and handicapped within our county. And State Wide, there was another transportation service for Handicapped  ( with a small free for both per trip) that helped me for everything. Maybe if you look into your state there might be something like that.


I take Trazadone for sleep myself. I have 'speed brain' and grind my teeth ( wear night guard) and my schedule varies day to day. Some nights I go to bed before 8pm and then after 3am.


But .. You have someone making you breakfast daily???? Sweet



your house looks beautiful. Will you travel to New Jersey?:lol:

Link to comment

Thank both of you about the house compliment! Unfortunately that was my Nashville home with the butt Adrian. I loved that pink house though. That mulch around the shrubs was my do or die project and it took everything I had to do it...I can remember working for 5 minutes and was done for a good 2 hours. I was determined and so dizzy from vertigo that I basically lived on the ground in the dirt while I was doing this lol. I have never felt so accomplished as I did that day I laid down the red mulch. I took so many pictures and the neighbors up and down my street would stop and compliment my work. They knew I had been recovering from a stroke from watching me wobble down the sidewalk each day with my walker or cane. Kelli I'm afraid to tell you that this year has been a killer for me...I can not handle the heat it's been really bad!!! I don't know if I could do it again lol. :terrified:

Link to comment

Tracy you could/would do it again if you decided it was necessary. Hot weather certainly doesn't help, neither does cold. There's no pleasing some of us :tongue:. Here, we are just getting to the coldest part of the year. Winter solstice is only a week away. In the last week the cold has finally hit. Not that it's what you would call cold we only get snow in exceptional winters. But in the last week the wind has turned bitter, and cuts right through you. So far not much rain, which is a problem for the farmers, many of this years crops have been dry sown and everyone is crossing their fingers the rain comes before the seeds and soil blow away.  Fingers crossed we do get some real rain so that the dams fill up for next summer,

Link to comment
Add a comment...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.