Sunday, December 11, 2016

6 Months Post Stroke

Being flown to OHSU
It’s been 6 months today that I had my stroke.  It’s been a journey this last half of the year.  My life was turned upside down when I became dizzy and numb all of the sudden that early morning on June 11th.  I could no longer walk, couldn’t talk, and couldn’t breath.  It was the scariest time of my life and my families.  So many thoughts came through their heads about what was happening to me.  I don’t remember thinking anything but “what is wrong with me?!?!” I had no choice but to leave my trust and faith into the doctors to help save me and get me back to health.  It’s crazy to think that this was me 6 months ago!!  I mean seriously, I had a stroke?!?!  
At my worst, but in good care
Today I am mostly back to normal in terms of living my daily life, working, and being a mom, wife, daughter, and friend to my all of my friends and family.  I am still unable to run and exercise like I used to, but I am slowly getting there.  I still experience weakness on my left side.  My lower left leg and foot are almost constantly tingly and somewhat numb.  My upper left is still sensitive to cold and hurts still even when rain drops hit my arm.  I am used to it, but it’s still annoying. I do exercise and have been run/walking for 2 miles for a while now, but I’m usually in pain the next day and often lightheaded.  
An evening run
My left leg also gives out on me often if I do anything more than a shuffle.  So imagine trying to run on a trail again with technical terrain….I’d fall flat on my face! Only hiking for now. I started seeing a new physical therapist here in Salem that is well known in the stroke world and has so much expertise with stroke patients and especially those that are young and active (Northwest Rehabilitation Associates).  He’s got me running in the pool on an underwater treadmill doing HIIT workouts.  I’m not sure how long I’ll be going since it’s out of my insurance network and I have pay out of pocket.  I will go back to Kaiser and see the physiatrist and another PT and see if they can do more, but I doubt they can do what this other guy can do with his facilities and expertise.  We will see what happens!!  It’s hard to make any fitness goals because I just don’t know what I can do safely, but for now my goal is to keep at it and continue getting better!  I’m itching to do a trail run in the Spring, but I don’t think I’ll be ready.  Slow and steady, I need to remember, but I’m finally feeling more hope with this new therapist.  I only wish I found him sooner! Chris and I have been taking advantage of our mostly mild fall with short runs/walks in the park with Chloe and Rogue.  He is getting huge!! Can’t wait to be able to really run with him for a long run.  We are still representing our favorite trail running gear company Orange Mud and are thrilled to be a part of their team....they also have some great deals right now too, so be sure to check them out! They are definitely helping me in my recovery in keeping me motivated and hopeful I will be running on the trails soon.  
We celebrated Chloe turning 2!!!  Seriously, how do they grow so fast!  She’s thriving everyday and sings her ABC’s and can count to 20 now while she does “pull ups”! She amazes us every day.  We are so thankful for each and every day and I still can’t thank everyone enough for your support this year!  I still haven’t finished my thank you cards, and I apologize for that...I will eventually get to them all!  But please know how much you all mean to me!  We hope you all have a wonderful Christmas this holiday season and hug your loved ones!  Cheers!

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