Stroke Anniversary

Tomorrow will mark the first anniversary of my stroke. After my stroke, my whole world was flipped upside down. This year has flown by and my world now consists of rehabbing. In the beginning of my stroke, I was unable to walk, talk, or hear. I’ve made significant progress. I can walk faster than anyone that I know. I regained my ability to speak. My hearing is getting better. The progress that I’ve made is due to my strong work ethic. Still, I want more. I want to be 100% again.

However, I’ve had to face many hardships outside the rehab process. I lost my 9 year career. I’ll spare the negative details about how heartbroken I am. I started taking anti-depressants to deal with my anxiety and grief. Financially, we’ve had to make hard adjustments. We refinanced our home, sold my car, traded in Ricky’s truck for an economical car, and switched electric carriers.

For the future, I’m hopeful.  In the beginning of my stroke, I had an evaluation from an audiologist who stated that I had normal hearing. As proof of this fact, she stated that I had normal scores on an audiogram. After recent research, I found out that an audiogram is only one piece of the puzzle. An audiologist is supposed to use an audiogram in combination with a speech recognition threshold test.  Recently, to get another opinion, Ricky took me to a different audiologist. The new audiologist stated the obvious: I DON’T have normal hearing. My speech recognition threshold level is VERY low. As a result of the latest audiological evaluation, I was cleared for hearing aids. I have an appointment with my audiologist soon to decide the best type of hearing aids to use for my condition. I’m hoping that the hearing aids will make significant improvement in my recovery. Previously, to understand speech, I was taught to utilize speech reading (lip reading).

Here are my goals:

1. Stay active and get in the best shape that I can. I’ve lost more than 20 pounds this year. However, I do wonder what effect the anti-depressant will play on my metabolism and appetite. I plan to monitor my weight and talk to my doctors to determine my options if my weight increases.

2. Keep my programming skills active. I’ve looked at some courses at Collin County Junior College that would be interesting.

3. Keep active in my rehab process until I’m 100% again. I  will find another job that will appreciate my strong work ethic.

My speech therapist told me that I have a Type A personality. I like task lists and goals!