It has been brought to my attention that I appear to have fallen off the face of the Earth. I’m still here, just dealing one day at a time. I’ve been keeping busy and letting time slip by between posts. Sure beats being bored!
My walking has continued to improve, slowly but surely. I no longer use the wheelchair in my apartment, and very little at work. I still have to take the chair to get to and from work and around town, but it’s nice to get out of it occasionally. I also still need the crutches for walking outside, as we found that my right leg, especially the knee, is not as strong yet as we would like. I have been working on control of my right hand. it still doesn’t do much, but it is a lot calmer and less spastic than before. The biggest problem continues to be fatigue, and I have been working with my doctors to create a plan to save as much energy as possible. I still get scolded frequently for overdoing, but I am trying to learn. I spent one day a few weeks ago in the ER with what turned out to be severe exhaustion. Since I sure don’t want to go back there again, I’ve been trying a little harder to rest!
I have been able this summer to participate in the Footloose disabled sailing program, which I love doing. I am participating this coming weekend in an overnight sail and camping trip. I’m a little nervous about energy levels, but am excited all the same. I am so appreciative of the people who have made it possible to “leave my disability at the dock,” as they say and take a break away from everything for a couple of hours. As with every chronic illness or ordeal, there are days I wish I could just take one day to be completely healed and go back to being a stroke patient the next day. While that is a stretch, I am finally getting to a point where I can occasionally participate in activities without every tough being about stroke and how I can work around the residual effects.
I was also able to visit my family a few weeks ago to show off my new skills. It was so great to be more self sufficient for this trip! I also met with some people I had known from college and graduate school to catch up and relive some memories. I have been working hard to learn a whole new field of bioinformatics at work, and have begun to put out feelers about where I could go from here. I still have a little to go as far as my training, but it’s never too early to think ahead. When I first began my postdoc, I had intended to try out yet another part of the country for the next stage of my career. However, since the stroke I have realized how nice it would be to have family support nearby and have begun to consider positions closer to my hometown. Not that my friends, coworkers and church family haven’t been great through everything, but family is just somehow different.
I hope everyone is having a great summer, and thanks for checking in! I say this every time, but I’ll try to find time to update more frequently.