The difference between me giving up hope and others is that I'm not standing still waiting for full recovery. I'm living my life to the fullest while waiting. Sure, I may have moments, days, weeks, or rarely a month on the self pity pot, but I eventually snap out of it. What about you? Are you still on it? How boring! Don't you want better for yourself? I know I did in spite of having two strokes.
If you've read this blog very long, I know you've shaken you head in amazement about what I have done since my strokes. It honestly has taken some hard work and thinking outside the box creativity to get here. I'm still without us of my left arm partially. The shoulder works, Thank God! But from the bicep to the fingers, nothing except some serious spastic muscles. I truly believe if it wasn't for the spasticity, I would have regained full use back. I was well on the way before it set in full force leaving contractures in my wrist and fingers. My ankle is another story. I couldn't strengthen the Extensor Digitorum or Peronesus Longes (outside, lateral calf) muscles enough to control my ankle from inverting. See, I know which muscles are affected by my strokes and are causing the trouble. But I can voluntarily evert my foot and dorsiflex when the spasticity is not present. I still am working on these issues with exercises. But, I'm thankful for my AFO, it allows me to stand and walk.
My attitude has been my saving grace and my frustration point. It's no secret that I'm stubborn because of this I'm resilient and tenacious. It's also no secret that I'm a cheerleader. I'm always rooting for the underdog even if it's me. These traits have carried me through a lot over the decades. I used to say learn something new each day. Yeah, I'm a nerd. But, since I had a stroke I've added to that. Attempt to relearn or try an alternative of something you used to do each day. Nothing is easy the first time you try. Heck, it may be difficult the first twenty times you try, or even the 500th time you try. Who would have ever thought a video of me cooking or canning one handed would get 4,000 plus views, but it has. The same goes for a lot of videos we produce where I'm in it just doing.
Your stroke did not kill your brain, only parts of it. I know you still are thinking trapped inside that nonfunctioning parts of paralyzed body. I know I was and am. My mind is going ninety to a million miles an hour. I could spend hours, days, weeks, months, and yes, even years bemoaning my lot in life. But inside, I use all that brain power in thinking of things I can do and how I can do it. Yes, I will continue to fail at trying to use a manual can opener. But that doesn't mean I won't pull it out of the drawer and try it from time to time. There's got to be a way to use it. I just haven't thought of the correct way yet. When I do, you'll be the first to know.
Yeah, I'm hard headed, stubborn, and have an attitude. Beep, beep! Get outta my way! I might just run you down if you get in my way with the speed of my brain power. I ain't dead yet. That which does not kill me, makes me stronger. Want my attitude? What's stopping you?
Nothing is impossible.