- July 20, 2017
- Posted by: Dr. Elise Cohen Ho
- Category: Health & Wellness
Wrae Sanders is our guest blogger today.
She is a Louisville, Kentucky based life coach whose coaching is focused on parents of special needs children and people dealing with life’s transitions.
Today Wrae is here to share a personal story about what having a stroke taught her about life and how you can use those lessons in your life.
What A Stroke Taught Me About Life
By Wrae Sanders
Life is an interesting thing. It goes a lot faster than you think it does.
There was a time I wasn’t living my best life.
March 30, 2013 was a regular Saturday.
I was extremely stressed out and my marriage was going downhill.
I had two special needs kids.
Note: One of my kids is no longer special needs as her delays have been resolved, but my son’s are permanent. He has ADHD and autism.
I was working as a Mental Health Associate at a large mental health facility and was assigned to a unit with kids that have developmental delays and disorders.
My health was not well.
I developed a horrible headache that turned into a migraine unlike one I had ever had before.
These did not happen very often, but I knew this was a bad one. After talking to my nurse manager, I went home.
As I drove home, I started feeling worse.
My vision was blurry, I began feeling even more nauseated than I had before. Even worse, my right arm went numb.
I should have gone to the ER right then.
Instead I went home, crawled into bed and tried to go to sleep.
Note: This is a horrible idea if you have these symptoms. DO NOT DO THIS.
I tried to turn over, but my arm would not move. I burst into tears and my husband called my mother.
He was terrified that something was wrong.
My mother drove me to the hospital. I was taken back immediately for a CT scan.
It was immediately seen that I was in the middle of having a TIA, otherwise known as a transient ischemic attack, or a mini- stroke.
From there, I was sent to a hospital that could further care for me.
My mother was crying, she is not a crier, so I knew it was serious.
I don’t remember a lot from that night, but I do remember telling her:
If I don’t make it out of this, tell my babies I love them.
She promised she would and left.
I woke up much later the next day, and my husband was there. He and the doctors told me the details of what had happened to me the day before. Basically, I was extremely stressed out from the life I was leading and I had developed a migraine that went very badly.
I actually could have died had I fallen asleep in bed.
At just 30 years old I’d had a mini-stroke.
I was introduced to my neurologist, who I have seen ever since.
This episode left me with some speech issues, called aphasia. In addition I have balance issues, and short term memory loss. I still have migraines.
It is a struggle but I take medications daily to prevent them.
I also had to make lifestyle changes, because that is most likely what led to my stroke.
This is some of what I have learned.
Tips to Live Your Best Life
- Decide what matters most.
I have children and a husband that need me. To be there for them as long as I can be I lost weight, discovered yoga, and learned to relax. I also wanted to do other things, like pursue a writing career and start a business.
- Find your worth.
This was a struggle for me, because I had LOST mine. It took meeting someone very special to learn my worth all over again. He died in 2015, but his lessons will be there forever. Once you find that worth, keep it. Many people seek therapy to do this, and it can be very helpful. Support from others you trust can also help, especially on the bad days. Helping others can boost your sense of worth. Read books, make a Pinterest board of quotes, make a playlist of music. Whatever works. Just do it. You’re worth it.
- Surround yourself with great people.
I have great people in my life. I had to kick out a lot of people at one point and it wasn’t as painful as I thought. Sometimes you have to redo your circle to find out who really belongs in it. That’s okay.
- Love is always good.
When you are loved and you love others, somehow you are much happier.
- Have fun!
I try to have as much fun as possible each day. Everyone has a different idea of what fun is, but try to squeeze it in. What good is life if there is no fun in it?
Note From Elise:
Now it is your turn.
What do you do to bring more fun in your life? What is your favorite way to relax? Please share in the comments below.
I will be linking this post up to the parties that are listed on my Party With Me page. If you are a blogger you should go link up too. If you are not then you still should go there are check out all of the greatness. Also, check out my Tip Tuesday Link Party which runs every Tuesday through Friday. Be sure to visit We Are Pinnable too. I am guest host for July.