Not rocket science – please read this!

Almost 3 weeks ago I got up to fix dinner and my legs went to jelly. I sat down for a few minutes, but when I got up, they still felt like jelly and my left arm had gone numb and tingly. All I could think of was ‘I’m having a stroke – how do you test if you’re having a stroke?’ So I held my left arm in the air and watched as it slumped to the chair by my side. Then I asked my 16 year old son to help me ring an ambulance.

I spent the next 24 hours in emergency at the local hospital. They gave me a CT scan and told me I had a giant aneurysm in one of the arteries in the right side of my brain. A few days later I was taken to a large hospital in Sydney, had a barrage of tests including MRI and angiogram. Then on the Friday night I was told that I would need to have open surgery on my brain to ‘clip’ the aneurysm, so it wouldn’t rupture. So I had the whole weekend to think about that. They proposed doing the surgery the following Monday. I was as ready for it as I could be, when one of the registrars came in and said they thought it could be fixed by a process called ‘coiling’, which is a much less invasive procedure where they perform surgery via a catheter inserted in the femoral artery and fed up into the brain.

So on Tuesday I went to have the coiling, but the machine had broken down. I’d already been sedated and they were trying to explain how they were going to block the artery and I could lose the peripheral vision on the left side of both my eyes, although it was highly likely that other blood vessels had taken over that function. I felt incredibly helpless because of the sedation.

On Wednesday, I went for the procedure. When I woke up I could see perfectly, but my left arm and the left side of my face were numb and tingly – I’d had a stroke during the procedure. I spent two and a half weeks in hospital. Now I’m home with my kids. They’ve been wonderful – keeping things going at home while I was away.  All I could think about was my kids – they lost their dad (my ex-husband) to cancer 3 years ago, and they’ve had a rough time.

I’m so thankful for all the good wishes, prayers and positive thoughts from family and friends. And for the answer to those prayers. It’s made such a difference!  I’m told it could take 18 months for my left arm to get back to normal, and have been prescribed lots of crafting to get the muscles and co-ordination happening. I’m still unbelievably tired and exhausted. 

So my friends, live every day!

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Published in: on April 11, 2009 at 8:15 pm  Comments (15)  
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15 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. o.0 a lot to deal with! glad you are all right.

  2. You’re a brave little cookie, Liz and I’m ssoo glad all went as well as it did after your harrowing ordeal. Please rest up and let your boys take care of you..you’re very precious to them and I bet it’s been a worrying couple of weeks for them too. Hope you had a very happy Easter and enjoyed some yummy treats 🙂 xx

  3. Lots of crafting sounds like a perfect prescription, rest up and get well soon, Sounds like a very scary experience!

  4. Liz – I’m really sorry to read this, how scary, especially being told you could loose your peripheral vision. I hope that the numbness goes away soon and that you can get plenty of rest and tlc. Thinking of you,

    Jacqui

  5. How frightening for you. Take it easy and rest up with some craft by your side. Sending you much love and strength from the bloggy world!

  6. oh, Liz! i’ve been missing your little blog updates. i just figured that you were busy. i am so sorry to hear that things were so awful for you! it’s so nice that you have good kids. i am praying for strength and hope and healing for them and for you. i am very glad that crafting is one of your prescriptions for mending. i’ll be praying that it doesn’t take 18 months for your arm to get back to normal. hugs to you.

  7. Oh, my! What a terrible experience for you! Glad you acted so quickly and it was something that could be repaired so easily. Get lots of rest. Hopefully, that arm will be back to normal soon.

  8. Oh my goodness! how terrifying. Poor thing. Take care! At least you can have a good excuse to spend time crafting now, it’s therapy! I agree it sure is important to live every day!

  9. Just checking in to see how you’re doing. Hope you are improving, take care.

  10. My goodness. What a shock to visit your blog today. I’m so glad that you’re OK and that you are knitting along. Sending you lots of good healing thoughts.

    Cathy
    xxx

  11. OMG LIz, I am so far behind on my bloglines that I just now read this post. I’m soooo sad that you have had this terrible scare and very happy that you lived to share the tale. WoW! Talk about scary. I will be praying for you and wishing you a speedy recovery. Brenda

  12. Oh my gosh Liz, I can’t believe I’m just reading about this for the first time. I’m so happy that your operation went well and that you’re back doing what you love, what a complete shock for you and your family. I hope you’re well on the mend now, psychologically as well as pysically, it will take time. (My hubby had two brain surgeries last year.) Much love to you and your family xx Mich

  13. No wonder i hadnt seen you around the webs for a while!
    What a terrible thing to happen.
    Glad to hear you are on the mend and hope to catch up soon.
    Take care

  14. Hi!
    Keep doing the fine motor things and keep working to strengthen your week spots…I bet you get back full use of everything! For my dad, we gave him a sponge ball and then a rubber ball to squeeze and my uncle made a pulley and he started out with no weight and then we added lite weights and he came back completely and his was a massive stroke.
    You are very brave! Best wishes to you and your kids!
    karen

  15. What a brave, terrific lady you are, and you have my admiration. I have a dear,sweet friend that had a stroke, and like you they prescribed craft therapy..and like you, she is wonderfully brave.She is doing better each day…. My prayers will be with you… blessings


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