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Sometimes It Still Seems Like Too Much



I'm tired of talking about all things Stroke. Sometimes, even reading the intor posts from newbies, it all just seems so overwhelming. There is never a break from stroke, the fact that I had one, the deficits that I'm left delaing with, the questions from coworkers and even complete strangers about why I use a rollator, or a cane, or why I have Monster. I'm even tired of answering the question "how are you feeling?"


Can there be 1 day, just 1 day when stroke doesn't seem to take up so much of my time/mind? Or am I asking too much? I can't even go to breakfast with my kids to celebrate Mother's Day without it intruding. We were sitting in a family run diner, Sam, the kids and me, with Monster quietly laying at my feet, when the comotion started.


One of the patrons at the table next to us suddenly realized there was a dog lying under our table and started to make a scene. The waitress quickly told the patron that the dog is a service dog, however, if they were not comfortable sitting next to our table, she would gladly move this patron and her party. Well, I suppose, as not to look like some undesireble sort, she told the waitress that she and her party were fine where they were. She hadn't realized the dog was a service animal. As if one could miss the big blue vest with "Service Dpg" embroydered white on black on it. Anyway, she sat back down, but continued her commentary on the dog to the rest of her party, after the waitress left. My family and I tried to ignore it.


Well, I guess, after some time, she just could not let the sleeping (and he was sleeping by then) dog lie. She had tio have the "last word." She leaned over and without so much as an "excuse me" interjected herself into our conversation with a "If no one is blind, why does one of you have a service dog?"


Logan chose to handle this one by politely teling her, "service dogs do assistance tasks for more than just seing impared people. My mom's dog helps her with balance and mobility."


"If that was true, she wouldn't also have a cane, young man."


"Ma'm, my mom and her dog have only been a team for a month. They are still getting used to each other and the dog still has some training to do."


"Well, I don't believe you and I don't think that dog should be allowed in here wher there is food."


At which point my daughter pipes up," Do you have a pet dog?"




"Does it come into the kitchen where you cook or does it sit under your dining table?"


"Well, of course he does. He is the family pet."


"Well, isn't there food in your kitchen or at your dining table?"


"Well yes, but....."


"Ma'am, my mom is legally entitled to have her service dog with her where ever public access is allowed, including at restaurants. If you have a problem, please take it up with the management. We are trying to celebrate Mother's Day with our mom. I'll thank you not ot inturrupt our time together any more."


"Yes, well what makes her even need a service dog? She looks perfectly normal to me."


"My mother has had 2 strokes since Christmas. That's why we are making a big deal out of Mother's Day for her. We came close to not having her this year."

Laney has always been the straight-to-the-point type, where Logan and Garion try to educate everyone. Anyhow, at that time, the rest of her party (her family, I'm presuming) decided that it was time to go and told her to leave us alone and come with them. As They were leaving, one of them mouthed "I'm so sorry" at Logan and Laney.


Laney got up and followed them to the register to pay for our meals. She said the woman was still rattling on about how "that dog shouldn't be allowed in a public place," with her family telling her to shut up and stop being so ignorant and mean.


I got that kind of reception when Momster and I went to church on Easter morning. I was so upset that we didn't stay for the service, but went home and I haven't gone back the last 2 sundays because it still upsets me so much.


That came out yesterday evening when we at Sam's parents' house. Apparently, my in-laws have had a thing or two to say to the people of our church about how they treated me Easter morning.


They also told me I shouldn't try to be so accomodating about Monster. He is there for my well being and that is my right. I should just tell people that if they have a problem with the dog beingf in service or coffee hour, they need to take it up with out priest. From what they told me, our priest is ali ready to politely tell any of them to live in the spirit of love and acceptance, and get over themselves. Hearing that made me smile.


But it still leaves me feeling drained of spirit to have to talk about, every day, in some manner, the fact that I had a stroke and am now living with the deficits as best as I can - even though some of those ways, like Monster, are really successful ways.


For just 1 day, just 1, can some one not ask me a question or start a conversation that has anything to do with anything associated with my stroke?


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I had little tears of outrage in my eyes for your Mothers Day episode. Bravo to your articulate, nonviolent children, :).I suppose every family has a burden to bear...and that woman was the other family's.


I keep waiting for a day without stroke too. I thought it would come when I could walk barefoot to the bathroom first thing in the morning a year ago...nope...still having the stroke forefront in my mind from the minute my bladder wakes me up to the minute before I fall asleep. My humor involves my stroke. Most of my reading...stroke. Clothes...ease rather than fashion..because of the..stroke.I can't think of one facet where the stroke takes a back seat. My focus when I'm out in the community involves access, parking and other concerns... to do with my stroke... My concerns are still annoyingly about me, me , me...and I'm tired of it.


Well now, that wasn't much help, was it... unsure.gif

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I'm like Leese, 24 hours a day I think about the stroke, walking, sitting, lying down, eating, talking(as long as I 'm not doing anything else). This first really hit me when I saw the TED video of Jill Bolte-Taylor as she was walking around, waving her arms and talking all at the same time. It took her 8 years so I guess I have 3 more years to go, but I'm not as smart as she is so I'll add on an additional two years and 2 more on top of that because I think mine was worse. :bouncing_off_wall:

I'm obviously not doing this right because my therapist says I need to get a little more balance in my life.


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I hope you didn't allow one ignorant woman's behaviour your good time. In world there are all kind of people, some are rude, selfish & inconsiderate, but don't allow their view to cloud your judgement of other 99 people you meet who are kind & considerate. just forgive that old lady & move on, you have raised your kids well, they handled her pretty nicely.


I wish you better day today & forever.



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your family handled that so much better than mine would have. my mother's day would have involved paying bail.busted_cop.gif at least your disability can be helped with your dog and cane. how can you help a disability of total ignorance? thankfully it seems she hasn't passed it onto the people she was with. my life does unfortunately always involves thoughts and actions related to stroke but i do try and laugh as much as possible even if i'm the only one who understands the joke. glad you had a loving supportive family with you on mother's day. i get by with believing in karnalaughbounce.gif blessings lynn

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Lydia: it amazes me at times how intolerant people are. Mostly as I try to peel the layers off the onion, I find underlying anger. At what, I don't know and mostly don't care to know, just leave us out of it-lol. Sometimes I think, I hope, that when Bruce is quiet, into his book that stroke may not be at the forefront of his mind, but then I see him go back and reread a section and realize that even doing his most favorite thing, stroke has invaded.


We swim with a 30 year old stroke victim, Dan. He just got his nursing license, but could not handle the stress of it, so is currently back to Patient Care Attendant at a wellness center hoping for a nursing opening=less stressful, he met his wife post stroke, drives. I will ask him if there comes a time where it is not the ultimate concern for everything he does. Except the preparation and time concerns will always be with us.


I know a lot of what Bruce and I do centers around the Rehab center and our local community. I am amazed at the concern and help we get. This past weekend, an older woman pulled out of the handicap spot, and waved us in. I rolled down my window and said, no we are OK, I'll find a spot. She said, no you are the couple with the WC, you need this spot. North Haven is not a small town and this grocery store is one of the bigger ones, but I have to say we have been very lucky.


The frustrations at stroke consuming your life, I understand. I can't think of anything else that comes close, except maybe parenting. It is probably just a matter of acceptance and second nature. Some nights when I drive home from work, I do forget, if just for a minute. But it is not a happy thought. It is realizing the situation has not gone away and I am walking into my new life.


Good week, Debbie

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