Thank you – everyone – for the encouraging comments, emails, and texts. I wish I could express in words how much your kindness means to me. Thank you just doesn’t seem like enough.
On Friday I decided to try going down the stairs. After not getting out for a week I was going nuts and was pretty sure I could do it, and I did. My nephew’s birthday is coming up so I took it a step further and asked Chris to take me to Target to look for ‘some ninja turtles that spin around or that dino tail wagging thing’. Let’s face it, who wants to be the loser aunt who doesn’t come through with a sweet gift? Not me, even though I’m not entirely sure what the cool stuff is anymore. <insert grey hair and a cane emoji>
It felt good to be out around other people doing everyday things. I could do this. Toy aisle here I come! Until I tried to get out of the vehicle and couldn’t put weight on my right leg to actually heave myself out. That was sobering. Somehow I weaseled my way around, stuck my left foot in the crack and slithered out. I hate needing help so Chris lost 3 lbs sweating in the 100 degree heat watching me do my gymnastics routine. What can I say, being willful is an art I suspect is keeping me alive.
From there I managed to gimp it over to the Lego, while Chris went off to look for the dino tail wagging thing and I sat down on the floor.
This is how you know you’re at the end of yourself: you’re on the floor in Target and a lunatic with a cart didn’t land you there.
Chris found the ninja turtles, but no dino. Undeterred, because apparently that dino is THE thing right now, I shuffled off to try and locate it. There it was, on the end of aisle who knows what, waiting to be discovered. That crazy thing (I know my nephew really wants) was enough to motivate me to the cash register and back to the car, where I realized I was bloody exhausted and went home to sleep for 4 hours. This is what I forgot about stroke recovery.
On the inside, minus your scrambled brain, you feel like you can do all the things you were doing before. Like a trip to the grocery store, pitstop at Target for toothpaste, run back to the post office because you forgot the stamps and still make it home in time to see what the hell Hope Logan is going to eff up today, is no big deal.
But it is a big deal and you can’t. If you’re lucky, you can do one of those things and if you’re really lucky you can do it alone.