S**t happens – so do Strokes

S**t happens – so do Strokes

On day One (October 8th 2016) IT happened. I went to the bathroom and I DIDN’T GET BACK. All of a sudden I had to sit down (not on the toilet) – I knew at once what was happening – I was having a Stroke. It shouldn’t happen to me, I thought, I’m only 74 – yeah that’s right we’ve all been there –  ONLY!? —- Why ? I thought, when I should have been thinking, right what shall I do about this. So I could set about planning my future.

At first I could do nothing – literally nothing. To move any part of my left side was near to impossible, I had lost all control over my bodily functions, much to my shame, and had lost the ability to clean myself up which meant relying on others all the time for everything. When you enter hospital you forsake all dignity until you leave.                          Then I started to accept the challenges, and the long road back had begun. The call bell for help was being ignored for hours it seemed, so I played hell. I WON. The reply of ” be there in a minute” could mean literally hours of waiting (its called the hospital minute) again I played hell with them, and I won again, ( I was getting used to winning and found that I liked it). I spent hours a day (sometimes as many as eleven) sitting in a most uncomfortable chair, where I could practice and plan, After a while I realized that if I treated problems as challenges, they became challenges that I could win mostly, if I put my mind to it, and my mind hadn’t been affected. It was something I could do, so I did it.

So I spent my time plotting and planning my future progress.  I fought against the goo that they insisted was all I could force down, and I won again. Water tasted like nectar, my first mouthful of pastie with vegetables and gravy was heaven. I graduated from the overhead hoist through various stages of equipment until I was able to get up under my own instigation, and then I was transferred to a stroke rehabilitation unit where I  continued to learn until I could stand on my own two feet. It felt good, and at about that time I became able to move my thumb, just the faintest flicker but it was still a massive achievement for me and I saved that to show off to my wife when she next came.

I cried with pride that night.

Several weeks pressure from the Physios (bless them) wrought some of the desired effect, and I got released. I had been hospitalised for a total of  67 days, during which I have to say I was treated quite well. The food was very good (except “b****y sandwiches every night for tea). All of the staff were exceptional, except when I was on a crusade        over some thing or another, or I was winding them up, I expect I was a PAIN IN THE A**S really. Every stroke is different and affects different people in different ways. In my case it seems not to affected my brain, (what brain you say?) but very often this was ignored. Everyone seems to treated as brain dead, which is frustrating to say the least.

Who cares – I was home again. What did I ask for for tea that night? A FLIPPIN SANDWICH of course. Talk about institutionalised.

Now was the time to really start to learn……I’ll tell you what I did ( good, and idiotic ) soon.



Not really I suppose, but sometimes it’s difficult to dream up ways of passing time.

I’m still studying the Physiotherapy course, and learning all sorts of things from it, which may help with the recovery, I’m still progressing with things in every day life, and can do more and more day by day, but it’s so grindingly slow.

Problem is that my mind is faster than my feet as it were!

Still – on the bright side I’m not doing some of the silly things, touch wood, like falling over, and I am making a positive effort to make use of my affected side to pick things up, and open doors etc. I’m not having to think and plan to do these things, rather they are becoming more natural for me to do automatically,

So let’s think on the better side of life, it feels more comfortable. It’ll soon be spring, and warmer, going out weather with a bit of luck. Polish up the scooter for some trips around and about.

We will soon become GREAT grandparents, which is a miracle in itself, and now I’ve decided it’s not as boring as it first seemed, so there.

2018 is promising to be a good year.



It’s been a good year really.

As the days go by I feel the world turning, but isn’t it slow. Or it seems that way to me, however, things might seem slow – but actually so much has happened this year that have been such huge plusses.

Now I can walk more freely (once to Pats disgust it was WITHOUT my stick to cross the room) Well my stick WAS on the other side of the room, so I needed it didn’t I, my abilities to do lots of things are re-emerging from hiding, and my confidence that the future is bright grows by the day.

I find myself taking on mundane tasks, more and more (stops me from going totally bonkers I guess) and Pat and I are achieving all sorts of things, which holds out lots of hope for 2018 I’m glad to say.

The aches and pains are still there, and I have accepted that – just maybe I could be getting old, some could be due to the stroke, in which case they are beatable, and some are due to poor posture, which is workonable ( is that a real word? ) doesn’t half make you sit up straight though I can tell you.

I am starting a home O.U type course on physiotherapy in order to learn something about my condition, it is most interesting and informative, as well as passing the time away. It keeps my mind active, if nothing else comes from it a plus in itself, and providing I pass I will become a certified physiotherapist in my own right …. NOT BAD HUH. Framed DIPLOMAS on my wall !

SO there you go – what a lot to look forward to in 2018, hey,

see you all soon…………….


Oh and a Happy New Year to you all.

It’s been a while, time goes fast when you’re having fun they say…..

When I stop laughing I’ll try to write.

Nothing to report really, I still proceed with my rehabilitation, I still enjoy doing things that I didn’t have to plan ahead for, I find there is more possible than I thought there could be. In general LIFE IS GOOD.

Not so good – my back is killing me most of the time, which makes walking around a difficult thing still, however at least I am able to walk around a little, which is the silver which is lining this cloud.

The opposite is the time of year – its cold and wet weather we face – (more hours indoors) – still, it’s almost Christmas again, and soon after it’ll be spring to look forward to (another bit of silver lining).

So – if you look for it there is always something to look forward to isn’t there.

KEEP LOOKING – and life will stay good and bright.

Here I go again – staying upright this time

We forgot to pick up my tablets this week, don’t know how, so I decided to save Pat the trouble, at the same time giving myself another challenge,  off I went on my scooter again – to the pharmacy – where I disobeyed all rules and promises and dismounted and went in on my own to pick them up, remounted alone and went off back up the hill.

Pat tutted at me for that, but it felt really good, it’s just one more step forward on the long road.

Over the last few weeks my sons in law have been so good about the little jobs I used to be able to do,  I’m so lucky to have people like that as a part of my family.

So – now I can do more than before I guess I can claim PROGRESS. I find myself doing new little things, without planning how to, and achieving things successfully after planning to, it feels good.

I know and accept it will take a long time to get better, but get better I will, watch this space.

Just to keep you all up to date – some good news, some not so good ……. the not so good is my back is still killing me since the fall a few weeks ago (I think I may ask the doc to take a look soon. After all it is nearly three months of unremitting pain now) The good news is I am still losing weight at a steady rate, and feeling so much better for it.

Sitting here watching that big orange thing appear from time to time in the sky, and watching it snow dead leaves all over the garden, I can recall happier and interesting times gone by. Got a lot to be thankful for really.

All told I’ve decided Iv’e got a lot to be happy and contented about haven’t I.

I’m still learning – THAT is the secret I think.

Years ago I learnt to walk, now I’m doing the same thing all over again. Funny ain’t it ! it’s something you never expect to lose……… You can though    –     It’s easy.                                  At the same time you can forget how to, or lose the ability to, do all sorts of things you did before. You don’t mean to – YOU JUST DO. Most frustrating really !

I spent 75 years learning how to do all sorts of things – fortunately it doesn’t seem to be progressing at the same pace now – otherwise I wouldn’t half be old come the end.

Although it seems to be slow, and IS slow by my standards, progress continues to be steady. I find new things everyday that are improving for me. Some of it is pure improvement, and some can be attributed to learning how to do things more efficiently. So I wasn’t so clever as I thought I suppose.

I have just celebrated the 1 year anniversary of my stroke, next will be the anniversary’s of coming home – losing the first 5 stone in weight – and more things than you could shake a rats a**e at – optimist aren’t I.

As you can see,  I intend to live a long and happy life – STARTING  TODAY – see if I don’t.

If I can, so can everybody else. It just takes a cocktail of determination, mixed with a hint of self-confidence and emotion and just a smidge of anger to stir the pot with.

WATCH THIS SPACE ! – I’m on the way……………….


Yesterday I climbed onto my scooter and went to see my friends and colleagues for the first time since the stroke. I told myself I would – and I DID IT.

 Its so simple when you say it quickly, I suppose. But to me it was an immensely satisfying achievement, for which I just want to say THANK YOU EVERBODY for the help and encouragement given, without you I couldn’t have done it.

Now then – this years target – I will start to mow the lawns before the year of 2018 is out, and I will start back to work. Nothing to it really, simple if you say it quick !

It is merely a matter of determination, that’s all.

See you soon.




After my last (quite severe) fall, I have taken a long time to recover back to the achieved state of that time. That’ll teach me, I hope, about the importance of being more careful. A greater degree of concentration is called for – that should do it, I HOPE SO ANYWAY.

Anyway – I’m almost there. Thanks to the efforts of Mathew and Sarah, Steph and Andrew, and of course Pat, my scooter is now safer to use and can be easily seen by other road users, so I will be using it to go and see the group leader next week to volunteer my services in some way, probably local delivery of drugs where needed. At least I’ll get there before the first anniversary of my stroke, and at one time I thought I’d never achieve that.

The visibility improvement was the addition of a flashing beacon to the scooter – not me. We achieved that quite cheaply by dint of a little online searching through which we found that the parts could be found QUITE CHEAPLY if we ignored N.H.S or MOBILITY suppliers ( who are ALWAYS TOO EXPENSIVE ). If anyone wants info – get in touch. I’ll be happy to help.

So here I am, still in pain – still getting better – still learning every day.  But who am I  to complain ? There’s many a lad in the churchyard who’d happily swap  places with me.