A Journey of recovery progressing from being slumped over in a wheelchair to a quality of life which is meaningful and satisfying
For Christmas 2003 my wife and I drove from our winter home in Arizona to our daughter’s in Victoria, British Columbia. While there I fell and shattered my right hip and had an emergency hip replacement surgery. Two days later I experienced massive bi-lateral strokes. When I regained consciousness 24 hours later (Christmas morning) I initially could not talk, had lost use of my left side and was extremely confused. A week later I learned that I also could no longer read. As I was regaining concssness, I felt my wife touch my neck and heard her ask me if I had said something. I tried to tell her that it was just a hiccup; but the only word that words come out was Burp. As things started being clearer my left arm that had felt like lead slowly loosened as my little finger started to move followed by my fingers and left arm. I suddenly realized that I was surrounded by family members from halfway across the continent. I sort of became aware that my sister was moving her hands around me and I heard her say that it was a good thing that I was out or I would be yelling at her to stop that Voodoo crap. I later learned that my family had been told they needed to get to the hospital quickly as the doctors thought that I was about to die. A week later I was moved to a neurosciences unit in another hospital. Within days I was being lifted out of bed with a Hoyer and into a wheelchair where I would slump over to the left after a month of improving to where I could sit up in a wheelchair and stand in a walker I was transferred to a hospital in my home city of Winnipeg. At the end of my two months in a rehabilitation hospital I walked out independently. With 2 months of outpatient therapy I was back walking and playing on a golf course less than 6 months after my strokes. By the fall of 2004 I was writing, walking golfing, driving, travelling and back to our winter home in Arizona. For anyone interested I have written a book on the journey of recovery following stroke entitled “Poppa Why Do You Wobble.