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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!:)

my stroke

Sharjah, NCD Alliance Gobal Forum, day 1 (noon;))

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konferencjaAs I was informing you on a stroketales facebook page, I was attending the NCD Alliance Global Forum 2017.

This is the translation of my polish text with some small amendments. Keep in mind that I wrote this text on a first day of the conference, after a whole day spent in planes, now it’s a week later.

My question is: do you even know what NCD is? Well, until I was invited to this conference, I had no clue what this term means.

NCD is an acronym for non-communicable disease. What is it? It’s an illness which you can’t catch someone or something. So stroke, lupus and depression fit the term, but AIDS, plague and flu don’t.

Actually, even Wikipedia doesn’t say ow wide this term is – it can be used only to chronic diseases, but it doesn’t have to;) But, for the sake of this blog let’sBut basically, that’s it. (by the way in polish we have term ‚choroby niezakaźne’. But it’s rather used only because we use term ‚communicable or infectious diseases’. ‚non-communicable ‚ is just waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay to wide. But who I am to judge all of it;)

Let me go back to the main translation ( text from Dec 9th)

As you can suspect being a part of NCD Alliance Forum 2017 is, on one side an honour, on the other adventure, both for personal and ‚professional’ (stroke survivor’s;) causes. My blogs are the most precious thing for me, therefore being recognised for them is rewarding. Continue reading

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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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 rehabilitation spasticity Uncategorized

Finally! Website about spasticity is here!

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With slight delay I may present you website with complex knowledge about spasticity:

http://lifewithspasticity.com

Right now only in English, but the website is going to be translated to other languages (including Polish, that’s great news for my Polish readers;) The morethe better i guess. I think the site will be available for more than English speakers:)

THE WEBSITE HAD IT’S LAUNCH, BUT WILL BE UPDATED.

For example next questions are waiting to be answered. You may remember that we (me and you, my readers) submitted some questions too.

To tell the truth I’m certain that the website will do many good things researches show people know about spasticity less than they should. Often they don’t even know what they are suffering from. This website is a first place online (I’m certain for like 99,99999999%) that collected important all basic and lot of non-basic data about spasticity. Actually it helped also me, and even before i wouldn’t call myself ignorant in this matter. Continue reading

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If you want laugh your head off, go for zumba class after stroke

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One psychologist told me once „go to zumba class or play instrument. It’s so useful for synchronising your cerebral  hemispheres”.

Finally I went for this Zumba thing. And once a week I’m synchronising myself.

What is this synchronising thing about? 

As we all know our cerebral hemispheres are responsible for different things (we call it leteralization) Right one is more creative and intuitive, left is more logical and analytic side, it is said. And it is said that our brains function best, we are the smartest, most creative and we fan focus best when our hemispheres are cooperating flawlessly.

even if it’s not an miracle medicine for my issues I think that trying to synchronising my brain can’t do any harm. That’s why I play piano every other day and…. I signed for zumba class 

That is the moment where you can fell from your chair from laughter. Because I feel like that:
mis

when I should feel like that:

balet

Zumba is kind of fitness dance. Energetic and fun. But. While my group goes three steps right, I manage only one and I don’t have time to move arms;p It’s so hilarious. Frequently I must stop and laugh at myself.:D But I hope that it will get better. Remember, practice makes a champion. Step by step. Poco a poco. Maybe finally I will use my hips one day, because so far I’m just one walking (dancing?) stiffness which can’t move two body parts at the same time:)

But I hope it will get better, both my grace and my brain and one day I will be able to work normally, full time. And I will be able to focus on something and dance like this man:

Of course classes are tough for me and for whole day I’m preparing to them by taking rest and obligatory nap just right before class. And after Zumba I don’t do anything, this coordination trening is in a way more demanding for my brain than for body. I rest, watch something and go to sleep. It’s all so tiring. Add the noise (some call it music;p), people and training and you will get the nightmare of every stroke survivor. But this pain brings me joy:)

And you know what? Me, mom and the friend are laughing and have un. We aren’t skinny type (rather opposite) and I’m proud. Of each and every of us. For me it’s because literally month ago I was learning to walk like a human being not a little penguin penguin and had to focus on balance very much. And now I try to dance! And I almost understand Spanish lyrics:))

PS

Of course that i would love zumba help me to loose weight, but i have very little faith that anything except doctor can help me…

my stroke rehabilitation Uncategorized

Running after stroke is possible! At least for me…

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neighbourhood

my running area:)

When one of my hospital’s physiotherapists asked me what I would like achieve with her, I said straight forward: I would like to run again.

She was very surprised. Weird wish for a survivor, who few months back couldn’t walk. Survivor who had just spent few months in hospitals, had countless checkups and had heart procedure, still with a slight hemiparesis of left side, left hand so tense that sometimes it hurts, suddenly dreams of running.

But she believed that I could run again. When we finished normal rehabilitation activities and place of working out was getting empty we started our practice on treadmill. Now i wish, someone had recorded my beginnings. I can’t describe how ridiculous they were. I had like zero coordination, one leg here, one leg there, but treadmill helped. My Mrs. Magda was gradually increasing the speed of the treadmill. I wasn’t allowed to look at the numbers. Slowly, but surly, after few days I was able to walk very fast.

And just few days before being discharged I „run” my first meters. My body had to „catch” the pattern of the movement. Slowly and not far, but I was running! I was so proud of myself.

Of course it was more like slow jog-trot, but I didn’t care. I didn’t care (and still I don’t) that I run more slowly that most people crawl. In the middle of the May, just 5 months I had my moment of glory, I ran 2,2 km (1,64 mi) in 22 minutes, without stopping even for a single second. I was sooo proud of myself.

And thankful for Mrs. Magda and my daddy and brother, who bought me gadgets to enjoy my first runs more. This made me believe, that impossible is nothing. Even for the stroke survivor.