Hobbies Are A Must!

Before my stroke, I enjoyed crocheting.  Today, it is almost a must for me.  I find that even if I don’t sit for a long length of time, I almost always will pick up my hook and yarn and get at least a few stitches done each day.

One of the first things I thought about after my stroke, was whether I would be able to crochet again.  Because I enjoy it, it was a perfect thing to concentrate on after I got home.  It works as therapy (ie: counting stitches, reading/understanding a pattern, etc.).  I’m not as fast.  And sometimes a pattern I’ve done before won’t make sense when I read it.  But usually, if I go back an hour or even a day later, my brain will say, “Oh, I remember how to do that!”

My obsession right now is granny squares.  Perfectly, lovely, ever-color changing granny squares.  My goal is to have enough to make an afghan.  But for now, I am just enjoying playing with the colors:

Anyone interested in crocheting these little gems must watch this great video I found on how to crochet over the tails.  Until I found this video, I had avoided granny squares because I dreaded all the weaving that would be needed from all the color changes:

Dealing with Soreness After Overdoing It

I will start this post by first saying, “I am very proud of the fact that I cooked the entire Thanksgiving dinner and didn’t bungle a single item!”  This was due to two very important facts:  1)  I was having a good day, and 2) My energy level was up.

But, I must admit that I am now dealing with the soreness left over from being in a high state of awareness and movement!


On The Eve Of The Holiday Season……

As we are the on eve of the holiday season, I wanted to write this post as a reminder to everyone out there, including myself, to please not let the holiday’s stress you out!

The perfect meal only exists because of the people sharing the meal. It’s not the perfect turkey.  Or the best stuffing.  It’s the connection made around the table, whether it’s two people or twenty.

The perfect gift is not the item purchased, made, or found.  It is the gift of your time you spent thinking about the person the gift is intended for.

The best holiday is the one you are celebrating, because you are here to celebrate it.


Don’t Understand? Ask Until You Do!!!

Anyone dealing with a long-term illness or condition will understand my next statement:  All patients must question their doctor’s about every aspect of their treatment plan!  Ask once, ask twice!  Hell, ask a hundred times until YOU UNDERSTAND the why, when, how, & where.  And most important:  Make sure YOU AGREE.

I have spent the last three nights in hell!  I have been on Baclofen since my stroke in Mar 2012.  But it wasn’t cutting it.  So last Friday the doctor asked me to try a different medication.

The problem?  Nothing was mentioned, and I didn’t ask bignono ,  about tapering me off the Baclofen first, or in conjunction with taking the new medication.  The last three nights, last night being the worst, had me awake all night, tossing & turning, and trying to stay comfortable amid the leg & shoulder spasms.  Which of course, led to me laying there becoming more agitated because I couldn’t sleep! This morning I am shaky, dizzy & and my anxiety level is at the top!

I put in a call to the doctor’s office this morning,  They put me on hold after I explained the situation and then the nurse came back on the line stating the doctor was sorry he didn’t catch that.  I am to gradually cut back on the Baclofen at the same time as taking the new medication.  I made sure to ask twice about this and hung up knowing I understood the why, when, how, and where! And for good measure, I called my husband and explained it to him so we both know!

Golf Balls? Really??

For a time after my stroke, I felt I needed to explain to people that I had a stroke.  Now almost 2 years later, I try not to tell people if I don’t have to.  While I understand being a stroke survivor is something to be proud of, once again I find that some of the stroke associations, IMO, go a little overboard with the “Stroke Accessories”.

I just received this email from the National Stroke Association.  Isn’t there a more dignified way to get the word out without having to plaster it on everything from mugs, t-shirts & buttons, to the newest offering…………………..golf balls?

Medicine Side Effects vs. Symptoms They Are Treating

Recently I’ve come to the conclusion regarding my medications:  Do I want to deal with the side effects of the medicine, or deal with the symptoms they treat.

I used to laugh at the disclaimers at the end of T.V. commercials for medications.  I always thought, “Geez, the possible side effects are worse than the symptoms you’d take the medication for!”

But since my stroke, I’ve had to make these decisions.  And, taking multiple medications finds me always asking myself, “Is it a med side effect, or another stroke symptom?” when something new pops up!  Most doctors have no idea and seem to point to the medications.  Which usually ends up with me leaving the office with yet another Rx to “try”.