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goldsworthy 05-13-2012 04:40 PM

Well, I AM BACK!
Some of you might remember me (I forgot this is a stroke forum) Let me remind you I had a major brain stem stroke December 4th 2011 (clot). It was the worse thing I have EVER experienced Almost all my brain stem was damaged I did get fast treatment though thanks to my R.N. wife that saw me stroke out. The doctors told my wife I was now 100% disabled. They said I would never walk again or be able to do much normal activities again. After 2 weeks I was able to toss the walker and walk unaided although a little unsteady. After 1 month I was able to teach myself how to drive my stick shift sports car again. My face returned to normal, My left side was numb after the stroke and it remains so to this day (It has gotten better though) I have full use of my affected side with full strength in all limbs. I had a 6th nerve palsy that made me see double but this too has gradually improved and I now see only 1 image and my vision has returned to its former glory! I suffer NO PAIN. In my last post here I stated I was going to start a very part time job and see how it goes. I am happy to report I am still employed although it is still very part time with limited hours. I deliver pizza I know not much of a job but it is complicated and involves more than just delivery. I try to challenge my damaged brain each and every day almost to the breaking point as I feel this will help recovery. I am able to sleep a normal 8 night hours and stay up all day, I do get tired but not enough to hit the bed. Considering the prognosis the doctors gave both me and my wife I think things are improving at a dramatic pace for me. I still have a large aneurysm 3cm in my stem that is inoperable , this could burst today or 15 years from today no one knows. I choose not to focus on the aneurysm as I know if it does go my death will be fast!. Life goes on and I enjoy each and every Minute of it. My wife will see to it I am not kept on machines with little hope of recovery(She knows I want the plug pulled and she is a Hospice Nurse by trade) she has it in writing as well (this gives me great comfort). I have a wonderful hobby as well I built and fly a quad copter. You have no idea how hard this hobby is and complicated as well. Anyway I will cut this short, I just wanted to check in here so ya all know I have not forgotten any of you. I will be back again with another report of my wonderful recovery! (REMEMBER, LIVE EACH AND EVERY DAY LIKE ITS THE LAST! life is short HAVE FUN!)

writeleft 05-15-2012 02:03 AM

Re: Well, I AM BACK!
Goldworthy! Great to see you back, of course we remember you! Thank you so very much for coming back and reporting all you wonderful progress! Another case of a triumphant spirit not allowing any of the doctors words to come true.

So, you are driving, working, and have a neat hobby that keeps your mind busy and always progressing...that is the secret, isnt it?

We are so lucky to have so many regulars here on the board, who keep this thing going through thick and thin. Everyone will be very happy to see your post, as I am.

As always, we also have lots of new people, here for themselves or family members trying to do their best for loved ones who have survived stroke.

Lately we have had several amazing stories like yours of strength and faith that have provided the rest of us with some powerful statements to the "never give up" policy that we live by here.

Your friend, Janet

Mulchie 05-18-2012 06:46 PM

Re: Well, I AM BACK!
Hello so good to hear from you again.
Thank you for your post. It always gives me such a push in the right direction when I hear great success stories like yours. You pushed on with great courage and determination. I just love reading your story.
It was great to hear from you.
God Bless Mulchie

goldsworthy 06-09-2012 09:13 AM

Re: Well, I AM BACK!
I am happy to report that my recovery is still going strong!. I am still driving my stick shift car, flying my quad copter, and working part time. The left side numbness is decreasing more and more each day. I am now at the 6 month time line. Life quality is GREAT and getting better all the time. I still have some short term memory problems to sort out but that too is getting better. I also feel that my chance of a recurrent stroke is reducing. Diet and excersise as well as a med. plan has stablised me for now.

Mulchie 06-09-2012 10:25 AM

Re: Well, I AM BACK!
Fantastic you sound so good and so positive. Glad you are sharing your success in recovery. It is so encouraging to others. It is great to hear from you.
God Bless Mulchie

goldsworthy 06-18-2012 06:09 AM

Re: Well, I AM BACK!
A Letter From Your Brain



I'm glad to see that you are awake! This is your brain talking. I had to find some way to communicate with you. I feel like I barely survived WWIII and am still not quite all in one piece. That's why I need you. I need you to take care of me.

As time passes and you and I feel better and better, people, even doctors, will tell you that we are fine, "it's time to get on with life." That sounds good to me and probably even better to you. But before you go rushing back out into that big wide world, I need you to listen to me, really listen. Don't shut me out. Don't tune me out. When I'm getting into trouble I'll need your help more than I ever have before.

I know that you want to believe that we are going to be the same. I'll do my best to make that happen. The problem is that too many people in our situation get impatient and try to rush the healing process; or when their brains can't fully recover they deny it and, instead of adapting, they force their brains to function in ways they are no longer able too. Some people even push their brains until they seize, and worse... I'm scared. I'm afraid that you will do that to me. If you don't accept me I am lost. We both will be lost.

How can I tell you how much I need you now? I need you to accept me as I am today... not for what I used to be, or what I might be in the future. So many people are so busy looking at what their brains used to do, as if past accomplishments were a magical yardstick to measure present success or failures, that they fail to see how far their brains have come. It's as if here is shame, or guilt, in being injured. Silly, huh?

Please don't be embarrassed or feel guilt, or shame, because of me. We are okay. We have made it this far. If you work with me we can make it even further. I can't say how far. I won't make any false promises. I can only promise you this, that I will do my best.

What I need you to do is this: because neither of us knows how badly I've been hurt (things are still a little foggy for me), or how much I will recover, or how quickly, please go s-l-o-w-l-y when you start back trying to resume your life. If I give you a headache, or make you sick to your stomach, or make you unusually irritable, or confused, or disoriented, or afraid, or make you feel that you are overdoing it, I'm trying to get your attention in the only way I can. Stop and listen to me.

I get exhausted easily since being hurt, and cannot succeed when overworked. I want to succeed as much as you do. I want to be as well as I can be, but I need to do it at a different pace than I could before I got hurt. Help me to help us by paying attention and heeding the messages I send to you.

I will do my part to do my very best to get us back on our feet. I am a little worried though that if I am not exactly the same... you will reject me and may even want to kill us. Other people have wanted to kill their brains, and some people have succeeded. I don't want to die, and I don't want you to die.

I want us to live, and breath and be, even if being is not the same as it was. Different may be better. It may be harder too, but I don't want you to give up. Don't give up on me. Don't give up on yourself. Our time here isn't through yet. There are things that I want to do and I want to try, even if trying has to be done in a different way. It isn't easy. I have to work very hard, much harder, and I know that you do too. I see people scoff, and misunderstand. I don't care. What I do care about is that you understand how hard I am working and how much I want to be as good as I can be, but I need you to take good care of us, as well as you can do that.

Don't be ashamed of me. We are alive. We are still here. I want the chance to try to show you what we are made of. I want to show you the things that are really important in life. We have been given another chance to be better, to learn what is really important. When it is finally time for our final exit I would like to look back and feel good about what we made of us and out of everything that made up our life, including this injury. I cannot do it without you. I cannot do it if you hate me for the way being injured has affected me and our life together. Please try not to be bitter in grief. That would crush me.

Please don't reject me. There is little I can do without you, without your determination to not give up. Take good care of us and of yourself. I need you very much, especially now.1996 Stephanie St. Claire

May be reprinted for personal, not for profit use.

writeleft 06-18-2012 09:14 PM

Re: Well, I AM BACK!

I absorbed every word of that with the greatest pleasure. Did you write this goldsworthy? What a perfect read for a stroke survivor or their family members? Every bit of it is true, and so perfectly put. I will have to read that one over and over, as it is such a great reminder to me about listening to my own brain.

Thank you for sharing this wonderful piece of writing.

ps. Please tell me more about the origin of this writing. It is so touching to me. in fact, even the timing is so perfect for me right now. It strikes me, how it has impacted me. Janet


writeleft 06-18-2012 11:29 PM

Re: Well, I AM BACK!

I am seeking your permission to post that "letter from my brain" so everybody could see it. I really think it is something that should be shared with as many people as possible. especially within our own group. I think it could be very helpful for many people to read.

It could be just what someone needs to hear right now. I will wait for your reply before i re-post it. Is a gem !

Thanks! Janet

goldsworthy 06-19-2012 05:29 AM

Re: Well, I AM BACK!

I am seeking your permission to post that "letter from my brain" so everybody could see it. I really think it is something that should be shared with as many people as possible. especially within our own group. I think it could be very helpful for many people to read.

It could be just what someone needs to hear right now. I will wait for your reply before i re-post it. Is a gem !

Thanks! Janet[/QUOTE] Janet I did not write that letter, however the author of the letter permits anyone to copy and use the letter as long as it is not used for profit so use away!

1996 Stephanie St. Claire

May be reprinted for personal, not for profit use.

Positive Cynic 06-19-2012 07:14 AM

Re: Well, I AM BACK!
thank you for the wonderful letter. I am sure that it will help many newbies here and there loved ones and a wonderful reminder to us "old timers" of what we have been through and what all it involves in recovery.

I am so happy to hear about your own recovery and you are doing so well. I have something in common with you. I too had 2 doctors that told me that I will be the same the rest of my life after my stroke. That my brain will not heal anymore. I could not read or write and made little sense when I talked. I told my wife afterwards, "well they think I won't improve any more huh??? well let them just wait and watch and see!!"

Obviously I am writing and reading right now :D and I think I make a little sense once in awhile.

Keep up the good fight and thanks again for the encouraging words for all of us.

God Bless,
Tim :)

goldsworthy 07-04-2012 12:42 PM

Re: Well, I AM BACK!
New followup scan done 6/15/12 report. Unenhanced intracranial MR angiography
is constructed from time -of-flight imaging there are no priors. There is a
small patent anterior communicating artery. The posterior communicating arteries
are small or absent. There is no significant stenosis or proximal branch
occlusion at the circle of willis. The left vertebral artery is dominant and
supplies the basilar. The right is either markedly hypoplastic or terminates as
a posterior inferior cerebellar artery.There is a fusiform aneurysmal dilatation of
the proximal to mid basilar artery. The aneurysmal segment approximates about
3.5 cm in length and has a maximum transverse diameter of roughly 1cm. No other
intracranial aneurysms are seen. IMPRESSION: Fusiform aneurysmal dilatation of
the small to mid basilar artery terminating well before the PCA
bifurcation/basilar tip. This measures 1cm in diameter by 3.5 cm in length. The
right vertebral artery is either markedly hypoplastic, aplastic or terminates as
a posterior inferior cerebellar artery and the basilar appears to be supplied
entirely by the left vertebral. patent circle of Willis with no significant
intracranial stenosis.

goldsworthy 07-06-2012 07:02 PM

Re: Well, I AM BACK!
Well, my stroke recovery goes on!. I am noticing improvements every day and in every way. I am increasing my work hours to 40 this week.I am still driving a stick shift car each day. My vision is now 100% back to normal, I still have some pins and needles in my left arm and leg but it is 80% less than 1 week after my major brain stem stroke.I have full strength in all limbs and in fact I went out dancing with my wife last Saturday. I am now 7 months post stroke and its starting to look like I may make a 100% pre stroke recovery!. I had my 6th month followup MRA and no blood clots were found anywhere. I think I will be on Plavix or something like it for life.I credit my recovery to my wonderful wife, she saw me stroke out and had me treated within 1 hour. Fast treatment after a stroke does make a big difference in after stroke outcomes.

goldsworthy 07-11-2012 03:18 PM

Re: Well, I AM BACK!
The most important thing I have learned is that unless we take the initiative ourselves, stroke survivors will almost inevitably become stroke victims. Sadly I have yet to meet a proactive medical person unless there is a degree of glamour in what is being done.Finally, as if a switch had been thrown, about three weeks ago I realised that it was me back inside my head. Now the real me can continue the struggle for recovery.The most important thing I have learned is that unless we take the initiative
ourselves Nothing will be done for us

goldsworthy 07-16-2012 11:27 AM

Re: Well, I AM BACK!
I woke up this morning feeling better than I have since my stroke Dec. 4th. My pins and needles numbness in my left arm and leg are now about 90% gone!. I lifted a 75 pound bag of feed with my left arm only and had no trouble doing so. I now believe I am starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. I also think that I will come out of this brain stem stroke 100% and my recovery so far has been 100% pain free!. I surly am blessed .We've all heard about people who've exploded beyond the limitations of their conditions to become examples of the unlimited power of the human spirit.
You and I can make our lives one of these legendary inspirations, as well, simply by having courage and the awareness that we can control whatever happens in our lives. Although we cannot always control the events in our lives, we can always control our response to them, and the actions we take as a result.
If there's anything you're not happy about--in your relationships, in your health, in your career--make a decision right now about how you're going to change it immediately.

Mulchie 07-18-2012 09:44 AM

Re: Well, I AM BACK!
One very awesome post. Thank you so much for that. I am so happy for you. God Bless and may you continue to be a blessing to others as you have been to us.

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