I apologize for taking so long to update you – I certainly didn’t mean to let a whole week go by since my first post about Maeikisala’s stroke! I’ve had to accept that I have far more to do than time to do it, and am triaging the best I can.
For the last few days, Mae (my beloved life partner) has been doing inpatient rehabilitation at CarePartners, an excellent facility here in Asheville. She’s no longer hooked up to an IV or any monitoring machines, and is managing her blood pressure with oral meds. Her BP is still higher than we’d like, but thankfully no longer critical.
Some parts of her brain that were stunned by the stroke are coming back online. Her right arm was dead weight for over a week, but she can now squeeze my finger with her right hand – a big breakthrough! She still can’t use her right leg, but more feeling is returning by the day in her right leg and arm. Her speech and cognition are already strong, and are subtly improving by the day. She’s doing hours of daily therapy to reclaim her functionality.
Since I’m Maeikisala’s primary caregiver, I’m reading up on stroke. I’ve nearly finished listening to an authoritative stroke book for laypeople, Stronger After Stroke, Third Edition: Your Roadmap to Recovery by Peter G. Levine. I’m also reading what some call the “stroke bible,” Hope After Stroke for Caregivers and Survivors: The Holistic Guide To Getting Your Life Back, by Tsgoyna Tanzman. I’m learning a tremendous amount that should help speed her recovery.
Maeikisala is maintaining a fundamentally positive attitude, even in the face of some challenging circumstances. She hasn’t had a good night’s sleep since the stroke, and fatigue is catching up with her. (We’re going to try melatonin to help her sleep.) She’s also coming to grips with an unpleasant reality of stroke recovery: everything now takes twice as much effort, and has to be accomplished with a lot less muscle strength.
As for me, I’m doing surprisingly well. Most notably, out of the blue a few days ago, I got a significant consciousness upgrade. My human and spirit selves are more fully merged, and I have a wonderful new vitality thrumming through my body.
Maybe this upgrade was needed so I could handle everything that’s happening. Or maybe spirit is just getting me in the ballpark of Maeikisala’s new post-stroke awakening! In any event, my experience is in line with something I’ve observed in my clients: the greater the challenge, the greater the potential breakthrough can be on the other side.
As I mentioned in the first post, we’re profoundly grateful for the support of our “tribe”. In addition to their ongoing prayer support, they’re giving Mae healing foods, herbal medicines and supportive visits. They’ve also expressed their willingness to support her after she returns home, when their in-person help will become more crucial than ever. Post-stroke recovery is no joke, and can require hours of repetitive exercises every day for months on end.
But we also know that your energetic support can help shorten that process. We’re so grateful to all of you who’ve been holding Maeikisala in your prayers. If you’re willing, please imagine Mae as completely able-bodied: easily walking, driving, gardening and exercising … with a jaunty spring in her step! For extra karma points, see her blood pressure reading as 120/80, with no meds required … and imagine her looking and feeling great at her optimal body weight.
This isn’t the Christmas Maeikisala and I were expecting. But we’re 100% committed to this adventure, and deeply appreciating the unexpected gifts this new journey is bringing. Thanks again for your healing prayers. We wish you an awesome holiday season and an amazing 2020!