Sunday, June 4, 2017

Sunday Stroke Survival: Rain, Rain Go Away!

It's been raining here on the homestead for three weeks. I was thinking about building an ark. No, not really.  Living on the side of one of the foothills in north Georgia helps. It all runs down to the creek which is a 100 feet below us. But all this weather has stopped forward progress on the building/repairs we had planned on the homestead. Not that it's rained or stormed every day, but close.

We had a delay in the delivery of the new chicken /rabbit shed. So the chicks are still free ranging. We've had a delay in the regrading and installation of the new driveway. Nobody wants to slide in the slick clay including me. No electrician wants to play with rewiring the outside power box in the rain. If they did I'd be concerned. It would do no good to trench the replacement water lines, it would be filled in almost as soon as it was trenched. So we sit and wait for it all to be done.

Meanwhile, the wet weather has played havoc with my life. The cooler damp weather causes my spasticity to be worse. Does this happen with anyone else? Even with the Botox, muscle relaxers, and the dry needling. My arm draws up in a tight set of muscles and dares me to try and straighten it. When I try it cramps into a charlie horse. My leg is just as bad. I have to put my AFO and socks on first thing in the morning. I can't take it off until bed time or I won't be able to put it on again. Imagine trying to relax or nap with this thing on.

My shoulder on my affected side is painful upon movement. I think I've developed osteoarthritis due to the ACL tear and the rotator cuff injuries a year to five years ago. Fun fun. It just adds to my misery. I really don't mean to complain. It would help to know I'm not the only one out there with this going on. I still have animals to care for and a life to live even though it's raining.

Walking in mud and rain is never any fun in living post stroke. First of all, I'm walking with a cane. Even more so when it's rainy and slick. I've just had too many falls to walk around in the rain without it. I may be stubborn, but I'm not stupid. The soles of my shoes may be thick rubber (not really but you know what I mean) with deep treads for better traction, but that won't keep me from sliding. Well, they do to a point. But clog those nice treads with mud and all bets are off. Walk into a store with those high gloss tiles and BOOM. I'll fall in a heart beat without my cane.

This poses an interesting dilemma. I can't move my arm to put on a jacket. I can't use an umbrella because my only working hand is full of a what do you do? My daddy always told me that I didn't need to worry about getting wet "because poop floats." Yes, he was just being ugly in the comparison. He really didn't mean it I'm sure.

So all my life I've rarely worn rain gear. I would get wet, but I would dry. It's like saying " a little rain won't hurt you." But before, I could at least run to get out of the rain.  Not now. So I get soaked. I'll dry. But then again, I walk from the car into an air conditioned store. BRRR! A rain soaked sock under my AFO is very uncomfortable. It rubs and cuts even with the extra padding the brace maker put in. Then there is the clean up afterwards. Wiping the whole AFO in alcohol after drying it. Having my insurance only pay for one pair of specialty shoes a year doesn't help. I'm off my feet until all of it dries. No sense in putting on a dry sock and AFO if the shoe is soaked inside and out. But I'm tired of getting soaked!

I know Rebecca Dutton mentioned in her blog a couple of years ago about a strap up gollashes, but I can't find it now. So Rebecca! At the time, I filed it away under "that would be nice, but not really necessary." This past month has proved the necessity to me.

I'm also looking into purchasing a rain slick that I won't have to put my arm into the sleeve, but can fasten one handed over the top of my affected arm. It may just mean getting one a size or two larger. The fasten easily one handed is the imperative. A zipper wouldn't be bad but joining the two sides into the zipper would be maddening. I would be exhausted by the time I finally got it fastened and zipped up to do anything else.

I know, Murphy's Law, that by the time I get all this new gear the rains will probably stop. But it won't truly stop. Even with last year's drought, it's has still been a very wet spring. I'll just be prepared. For as my mama used to say, "there will always be an again."

So that's it for this week. Remember...
Nothing is impossible.



  1. Jo I wrote about Neos over-the-shoe snow boots with a velcro opening that begins at the toe. Rebecca

  2. Rebecca thank you! I just ordered them

  3. They're funny looking, but there's always those umbrella hats.

  4. I hope you have good weather soon. And, yes, the cold causes my spastic muscles to cramp; I spend the winter with my left side adjacent to the wood stove, and clothed in long underwear, leggings, pants, turtleneck, sweatshirt and afghan, to be warm enough.

  5. Barb, During the winter, so long as I had warmth it was no problem. With the rains and coolish weather, it was unexpected.

  6. You always find a way to trump adversity and keep going. Respect you so much for that. All the best. :)

  7. Hi Sheena-Katy, Haven't seen you in a while. How's life been treating you?


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