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in my opinion my stroke Uncategorized

Workplace wellness: how your job could be better (thoughts after the conference)

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Again, after 2 months (sorry, these were really busy and difficult) I’m back to  Sharjah Forum and it’s theme.

I participated in the workshop about workplace wellness.

What is it? Wikipedia says

Workplace wellness is any workplace health promotion activity or organizational policy designed to support healthy behavior in the workplace and to improve health outcomes. Known as ‚corporate wellbeing’ outside the US, workplace wellness often comprises activities such as health education, medical screenings, weight management programs, on-site fitness programs or facilities.

and these words depict pretty well what we were discussing for quite a few hours but not quite what I was expecting. My thoughts on data I got bit chaotic but frustrating. Frustrating, because for me term workplace wellness and its representation aren’t really present in Polish reality. As a society we manage diseases easier, but get unhealthier, so we need something attractive to have a will to keep our bodies in a good shape. Implementing wellness programmes is a great idea. Which limits us, but on the other hand, saves us. Welcome to the modern world.

Leaving aside all philosophical divagations, my thoughts are simple.

For start: I can’t really recall many companies which would implement workplace wellness. In my Polish reality, it’s just not present. Sorry.

I admit that I’m not familiar with big corporation’s policies as I haven’t worked in one.

But still I have friends and I listen to stories. And how many examples I found? Right now, I can think of like 2-3 that could have been counted. A few days ago, for example, I had a chance to speak to a woman from Amazon and she mentioned such practices. To which extent do they care? I have no clue. It was a birthday dinner, not a work, so we left the topic quickly. But I know that they have, for instance, competition in losing kilograms between teams. Group one, which, in my opinion, makes it healthier*.

On the forum, there were people from organisations and companies who try to promote that or start such programmes. That’s a nice approach. There was a woman from HR department in a big company and she shared briefly their story. They started with nothing and people wouldn’t even care to know the new opportunities and possibilities. Only when they started with fun stuff. First, company parties with healthier food and attractive things to pull out people from behind the tables. Darts for instance. Then they started such things in office hours, implementing workplace wellness programs with very good results. Continue reading

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I hate my birthday. But it’s a good time to wrap up the year

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rebirth, stroke anniversary, hospitalEvery year on 3rd of January I wake up in an extremely bad mood which doesn’t leave me until midnight. Typical birthday blues. I try to have a full agenda, but this year… I had a migraine again. Vomited in the medical laboratory, the world was more painful than usual.

However, my birthday is the perfect time to share with you successes and failures of 2017. I’m gonna use numbers.

My first hero is 2:

  • 2 amazing months: July and November, when I felt well. They were full of joy, warmth and peace. Sources of their awesomeness were very different from each other but in the end, I spent two months almost without pain and depression, cherishing normal life
  • For the past two months, I haven’t been rehabilitating myself and exercising. I can’t explain it. It’s about being extremely busy and extremely lazy.
  • I started doing two cool things. I opened my business an started volunteering for poor people and against food waste. Shop gave my unemployed life bit of meaning, work for less fortunate made my need of helping others less meaningless.
  • Two things I’m actually proud of: my Lewaczka.pl blog (this one too;p) and first money earned since the stroke.
  • Two job offers. Nothing worked out of it, I have no clue why, but still: someone believed in me enough to offer me a place in his team.
  • Two brilliant blog entries from a guest star:) In Polish only, sorry!;)

12:

  • Pills I’m taking daily,
  • months since last birthday blues,
  • months till my 30th birthday

3:

  • three new diagnoses. Lupus: most likely I’ve been living with it for the past 10-15 years, not knowing about it, carotid artery dissection – could be the cause of strokes. Lupus, dissection, hole in my heart, I have many things to choose from;)
  • three hospitals I was admitted. All three admissions were planned.
  • For the third time, I was guaranteed social security money. Yay. I’m kind of covered till September.
  • 3 amazing trips. Denmark with a friend, Cyprus with family, Emirates for NCD Alliance conference... All of them were really great. Denmark was like completing lifelong dream, Cyprus nice time with my beloved people, Emirates: oh wow, it was my blog-wise achievement. Big one. I can’t stress enough how I enjoyed the time there.

1:

  • neurolupus, new kind of lupus thrown into my face. It’s about to be confirmed, now I imagine it as a little worm eating my brain and leaving me with depression, dementia and meaningless life,
  • one participation in an event of a big importance;)  well, at least for sick people,
  • new, brilliant psychotherapist,
  • one physiotherapist who has left me for the man. But I can’t be upset about it. I wish her best of luck with him, they deserve perfect life:)
  • One pronouncement saying that I’m disabled. It’s official. It’s good. It gives me a discount for a train. Twice a year;)
  • One magazine cover my face was on. I’m a cover girl;p
  • One sport I started to practice. I’m lousy. But Olympic games are once every 4 years, no worries here;)
  • Foreigner, I’m helping in settling here. He’s a friend and we are very happy to see his life easier from time to time.
  • Epilepsy attack. unexpected. Adding two years to my auto-ban;) (do not mistake with autobahn;p I mean I’m banned from driving for 2 additional years).
  • Website about spasticity I’ve consulted,
  • Day of the retired people I was celebrating,
  • the brother whom I love. But my love starts to be conditional. I don’t love him that much when he puts glass full of water on my back.

15:

  • kilos I’ve lost,

million:

  • of series that I completed,
  • hours in bed,
  • smiles and pleasant things that happened to me,
  • litres of water I drunk,
  • hours of not moving while I should move,
  • interviews I gave. It feels like a million anyway.
  • Minutes of escaping the reality.
  • of good, kind people I have around and I’ve met.

115:

  • texts for my polish blog (!!!). Only…

26

  • texts for an English version of my strokie blog. Poor result.

Zero:

  • of new strokes! None!
  • plans for that years. Many dreams though;)

It was a weird year. Horrible in many ways, but still kept finding reasons to smile. But dear my 29. and dear 2018:

by the way… one of the first songs I learned to play on a guitar. very bad. But for now it’d be perfect. Gotta try!:)

my stroke Uncategorized

My third rebirthday. Annual entry for stroke anniversary:)

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Today I have my third rebirthday.

on 21st Dec 3 years ago I had a brain stroke. That means that I’m at the same time 28-year-old, 63-year-old and 3 years old.

rebirth, stroke anniversary, hospitalEach year I feel very weird on this day. I really feel that this date is important to me, even more than my birthday. celebrating the day you were born, its something natural, but I didn’t choose the way of my growth, right? My mom says that I didn’t say ‚no’ to food, but it’s not like I was choosing it. After my brain stroke, I conducted my life consciously to the point that I could. From the diaper to the place I’m in.

Last year was a bit peculiar to me. It cant be related in few words, so I’ll leave it until the new years eve;)

Today I’m gonna be traditional. I’m gonna tell you the ways my life changed in a good way. Areas that are better now.

As you know, the life of a strokie isn’t that great. Frequently it seems to be hopeless and horrible. But there can be found things that changed for better. I truly believe that each and every one of us can find at least one such thing, even if his or her life is miserable.

Well, I have to admit, that few things changed for worse last year. surprisingly I feel weaker than last before. Strange. This year I haven’t had a stroke, the year before I did. how to explain that?:o

so many things are going for worse, I’m not gonna focus on them because there are plenty which changed my life for better. Since last year I’ve noticed a big growth. I’m letting the list expand, even if it grows that big, that it’s too long to read.

so.

what has changed in my life for better after stroke?
    1. I take better care of myself,
    2. I’ve met few new, nice people,
    3. I’ve let go few people, who were bringing me pain. emotionally it’s a great thing for me,
    4. I’m less stressed with small things,
    5. I don’t have a stressful and horrible job anymore,
    6. I’ve learned knitting,
    7. I quit smoking,
    8. sometimes I’m rested,
    9. the card ‚you know, I’ve had a stroke’ still works for me,
    10. I know why I’m oversensitive to sun,
    11. I have a PFO fixed,
    12. I’ve I’ve found a new, great psychologist and i feel that she’s the one,
    13. i’m fixing, one by one, everything that’s broken in me,
    14. i have the first thing in my life that i’m proud of. I mean my blogs.
    15.  My blogs give me satisfaction. It’s a really nice, previously known feeling.
    16. I have the energy to learn new things,
    17. I’m overcoming my boundaries and things I’m scared of,
    18. I’m more peaceful than before. I feel less irritated,
    19. I’ve learned Spanish. I can communicate in this language. And I learned it by myself,
    20. I’ve lost 15 kilos,
    21. I don’t have to give my granny rides to shops. Not being able to drive sucks, but on the other hand, I love this excuse,
    22. I see that I’m helping people,
    23. My hair fall out less,
    24. i’m thinking about myself more,
    25. I started dating,
    26. I have a small collection of figures of goats,
    27. I understand people better,
    28. I’m not that worried about money. I know its very horrible, as my parents are providing for me, but on the other hand, before I was counting each zloty with a fear, and now I’m still counting, but without fear,
    29. I get long depressive states less frequently,
    30. I get rid of stuff rather than I collect them,
    31. I’m learning to have an order around myself,
    32. If its even possible, I’m closer to my brother than anytime before,
    33. again I appreciate being outside,
    34. I have the hammock!
    35. I can do things in WordPress better and better,
    36. I have ‚my own’ business. It goes badly, but it’ll be better. one day.
    37. I have a feeling that I’m more active.

Comparing to the Polish version this list is shorter for two points;)

But still it’s impressive, isn’t it?

I like the points about being proud of myself, as for the first time I really feel pride and satisfaction. It’s a new, great feeling to think about yourself well. For a change;)

Maybe you should try to think about such list yourself? Even in despair, we can find something. For me, the first thing was realising in a hospital that I have nicer skin.

It started with one. Now list is that long!:)

loosing weight loosing weight project my stroke Uncategorized

Lose that weight, Kasia! I’m 15 kilos smaller:)

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I would do (almost) everything to have a better recovery. As we know, there is no ‚magic cure’ for regrowing brain (fingers crossed for stem cells therapy!), we have to just take the best care of what’s remaining and work hard to regain/improve what’s left.

For me, big weight isn’t simply an aesthetic issue, its connected to health and preventing next diseases.

I mean: by obesity may not affect many things, but sooner or later it will.’

So i’m losing weight. 15 kilos so far!:)))))))

you can sing with me. Wow! Wow! Wow!

It’s a hard work, it’s a daily struggle, but the reward is huge. I’m not going to complain then:)

 

Life’s been crazy recently, so I’m bit absent. I think i’m going to be back with you soon.

My Polish blog is doing well, but it’s hard to find time to translate things… Ill try harder. I promise!:)

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I try to relax my left hand

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As you probably know, I have slight spasticity on my left hand. Not big, but it still sucks.

I try to relax it in a totally amateour way, but it doesn’t really work. It was much easier under caring eye of my physiotheraphist. Being lonlier doesn’t benefit, to tell the truth. I admit: my attempts to make my hand loose haven’t been that successful, but attempts to make it more normal visually and funcion better have been working pretty smoothly.

For example: when I’m knitting I’m careful not to clutch my hand too strongly. It makes me knit slower, but, thanks to this, hand DOESN’T HURT. Yaay!

Same thing when I try to knit (I’m struggling to learn, so it’s difficult to relax, yet I try!)

When I type I try not to point forefinger and middle finger into the sky. They are shaking a bit, hurt, but this way they are being accustomed to more „natural” way of behaving. Continue reading

my stroke

It’s first anniversary of my second stroke. I still haven’t made my peace with everything

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Two days ago I had my first rebirthday of my second stroke. Lil’ stroke – it was waaaay smaller than the first one. Lil’ stroke – it hasn’t destroyed every single thing, only slowed down the process of healing, and added some inconveniences.

The stroke that didn’t change my life completely, but showed me, that my life isn’t normal. But who cares: I will work out everything. At least I hope so:)

In some ways, this stroke changed every single thing, in others – nothing. For example, I have like 99% of certitude of the cause of my strokes. I’m not scared and I don’t feel anxiety caused by Uknown.

But I didn’t mean to write about it. I want to express my feeling about living with this shit. I will focus on emotions, which have been a wreck for past few weeks. Or months?

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not unhappy. Ironically, I have a feeling that my depression problems got smaller after my strokes. This year I’ve had few pretty well months! Despite that, my emotions have been shaky. Like a swing, the hugest swing in my life. Minor things drive me crazy, mad, sad, or happy, ecstatic, loving… If you know what I mean. Continue reading

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What were you doing when your stroke happened?

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What were you doing when your brain stroke happened? I, myself, didn’t think about it much, but people keep asking me. And suddenly… I saw one topic on the Internet forum where strokies were sharing this information. I collected more, reminded myself stories from hospitals, and my readers. List surprised even me. It was diversified. And long. Now I am able to present thrilling collection which seems to scream „come on, it can happen anytime. Anywhere. To everyone”

let’s go then.

I had a stroke: Continue reading

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Gallery of the faces: I called. It was marvelous!

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I have a friend who is a fellow strokie. I might have mentioned him before, but I’m no sure. He’s a young French guy who suffered the stroke in Poland.

His stroke caused a big number of problems, such as aphasia, troubles with moving, spasticity… But this guy is determined to get better and gradually improves his health. Moreover, he does good things to the disabled community. He even plans his own blog:)

When we speak on Skype, he seems to be like me. My first impression was like: if I didn’t know, i would have thought that he had stroke problem. Normal boy, maybe looks for English words bit longer than a normal, fluent speaker, but you know stereotypes about French people & English;) my small experience shows that in France it’s easier to find a Polish speaker than English speaker. Anyway;) Continue reading

my stroke Uncategorized

how much does my stroke cost me?

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I need money. as some time ago I wrote about on the topic how our National Health Fund cuts money for stroke treatment and I try to save for  new computer, I think about money quite frequently.

I decided the amounts I’m spending on treatment from my pocket. The information you need first is that I get about 750 zł a month(=ca. 170 EUR=ca.180 USD). It’s a minimal amount you can get from our National Insurance Company for  saving there for a lifetime.

I decided to count my  usual money spent on ‚aroundstroke’ things.

Well, here it goes.

  • My physiotherapist gets 70 zł/h=c.16 EUR=c.17 USD) She comes here twice a week. Not too much, but also not too little. Some physiotherapists in my city demand much more. In some cases hourly rate can be lower. As far as I know my neighbors pay much more for the therapist.

Lets count: 70*4,5(weeks in a month i think)*2= 630PLN=146EUR=157USD

  • my water massage for hand and leg. Both for 7 zł (with a discount. Normally it would cost 14 zł). I go there twice a week.

Lets count: 7*2*2*4,5=126 zł=29EUR=31USD

  • meds I can only estimate cause I  buy bigger cuantities at one time. I mean doctors perscribe sometimes for more than one month. That’s fair.

Lets count: it should be around 100 zł a month=23EUR=25USD

  • But lets count further. Some specialists i see for „free” (public health system), but some I see in private offices. There are nice surprises. Allergist and laryngologist were available publicly and in sensible terms. But there are specialists you have to pay. The waiting line or rheumatologist is just 2 years in my city in public clinic. Not everything is linked closely to strokes. But still, in some way for sure. Like last September I was sitting in hospital, but still i managed to pay for endocrinologist.
  • Lets count: average 130 zł/month i suppose=30EUR=32USD

 

  • and checkups. It’s easy to get referral from the doc for TSH and level of cholesterol once a year, and for tomography twice a year. But for some I have to pay myself.

Lets count: the averagely it would be around 30 zł per month=7EUR=7USD

Together is gives us 1136 zł/month=263 EUR=284. And i get only 750PLN=173 EUR=187USD. 

That sucks big time;) But there is nothing much i can do.

I could sell all my books, but i use my parents, struggling to provide for me. That sucks. And I haven’t counted cost of my brand new nutritionist. which will cost me like 400-500 zł per month. All of it is half of my mom’s salary.

Well, i guess you should be wondering why I don’t wait to get everything publicly. But believe me, it’s impossible. Some things would be possible for sure, but it would extend the time of my recovery or even make my condition worse. I want to go back to work and provide for myself. You know what I  mean.

 

 

in my opinion my stroke

If you’ve ever thought how stroke feels like… Happy new year!:)

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in my humble opinion stoke is like the worst hangover you can imagine. Which lasts and lasts and lasts for too long…

your are mumbling instead talking

you can’t keep your balance

light and noise are like millions of needles which stick into your soul

this headacheeeeeeeeee

you are so tired

and so poor

world seems to be unfair and full of evil

you can’t control your body

you can’t swallow or you can’t even look at food

But this hangover doesn’t leave you after a day in bed. You have to work hard to mineralize its effects.

I’m writing abut it for few reasons. First: I want you to feel it a bit more. Secondly: I want to express that I’m happy not to have hangovers anymore;p Third thing would be wishing you

to not have any hangover-like symptoms,

I wish you happy 2017. I hope it will be kind, veryyyyy healthy and happy. I hope that you will have like millions of dollars and all institutions will have stay away from you. I hope that 2017  will give you love, joy and friendship. I hope that government will not piss you off, bed will be always warm, and headaches will keep away.

Dear 2016, fuck off. You weren’t too kind for me, for the world also, to tell the truth. Few nice surprises will not recompense me all the diseases and hours of doubts. I’ve just kicked  your butt and i want inform you that my delicious champagne (below) is going to bit you up. Ok, let’s face the truth: 2017 doesn’t have a difficult task to do;)
hello kitty champagne
PS

lately I’ve been whining a bit too much. My first new year’s resolution is to stop it. Good one, isn’t it?