The Night Before GraduationHello! I had a stroke the night before my "baby" my youngest daughter graduated from college. I had prayed for years, as an "older parent" and a widow, Lord just let me live long enough to see them through. Well, he did. He promised that. But, that night I as I stood up from my computer desk, my foot felt very odd, like it wasn't on the ground, and I could not get it to balance, that is my right foot. My speech was only slightly slurred, and by the time my other daughter arrived, she just thought I sounded sleepy. Since it had been stroke awareness month at our HMO Kaiser, she had been indoctrinated as to the signs of stroke and she put me through the test. Raise arms, good; smile, good; look at pupils good; but things were subtle to her. I thought that I was having anxiety symptoms about the graduation. The next day I told her I could not attend the graduation as I was sick. I spent the day sleeping and waking....a strange sleepiness overtaking me. My daughter returned from the town where the graduation was about a hour and a half away late that night, since the graduation was in afternoon, and the celebration ran til about ten. I told her would need to go to hospital, as the balance was so bad by then that I was walking like a drunk sailor....and a strange yet alluring sleepiness was taking over my mind.
Well, we were there for a long night….as I was continuing to go into the stroke mode. It was surreal, I had no pain, yet my awareness became more and more dream like, and my body started to show the signs more clearly, as I moved on my own with more weakness on the right. Our helper, a young man named Oscar lifted me onto a gurney that took me to MRI and CAT scan, after blood work. As his strong arms lifted me onto the gurney, I was confronted with his tattoo, a scripture. “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” This brought peace to my heart as much as could be and I realized in this way that my Savior was near me.
The next two days, my daughters watched me age 10 years they said as the effects of the ischemic stroke on my body showed up, my leg and hand on the right growing weaker, my mouth drooping on the right.
I was there for 2 and a half days, during the hottest day of the year, record temps over 110 degrees that first day. I had suffered a relatively mild stroke; they all said how lucky I was. I feel it was a divine gift, as from my hospital bed I sensed the Lord’s presence and he assured me I would live and be able to communicate with my family as I had asked of Him. Thanks be to God. Thanks for listening.