Even Robots Get Drained!

Honestly, I kind of have second thoughts on writing about this because my blog is intended to contain positivism only but I ended up writing because I believe a lot of us may have gone through this as well. And, I figured some points in letting everybody know, which are to encourage those who are still struggling to fight the risk contributors even after stroke,  to help the carers identify with the survivors, to avoid prejudice, and to strengthen the determination to quit cold turkey for a much sooner recovery!
I grew up in a country side under the care of my grandparents, who are still alive (thank God)up to this moment. I have three siblings, two of which are boys younger than me and an older sister. Needless to say, We grew up observing a healthy lifestyle. We had and endless supply of fresh fruits and vegetable readily available anytime as our grandfather has a lot of them planted around the house. You can just imagine how fresh the air we breath was as our small village is situated by the sea. Exercise? Well we had a lot of those! Except from a manual water pump as our means of water supply that we alternately do, We usually walk to school in the morning during elementary days and walk back home again in the afternoon because the school was not very far, maybe about 1 kilometer away from home. Back then, there was no internet, no iphones, ipads, android phones or anything of that sort. The first time I ever layed my hands on a computer was already in highschool where there was still no internet service available in our rural area. So unlike the children of these days, we had a very physically active childhood. A very typical healthy living indeed.
Then I went to highschool, it’s a bit far from home so I had to ride something called tricycle( I guess only in the Philippines ) – a motorcycle with a carriage attached to its side to carry passengers though sometimes I managed to go back home on foot while chatting with some friends.I was also a member of our dance troupe so you can have a picture of how fit I was. High school was my most curious days. It’s where I tried unpleasant habits like smoking and drinking(alcohol of course).And that is where it all started. I do not blame anyone for these wrong choices I made. I started smoking and drinking at 15! Can you imagine that! Well, not a regular smoker by then. I remember being caught with some girls in the school restroom smoking that lead to my grand parents being called to school.They were very furious too that they even threatened me of not going to college. Fun to think about it then but looking back, I am not even proud.Smoking became worse and worse as I grew older. In fact, I will not have stopped if I didn’t have stroke. Prior to my stroke, I used to smoke about more than half a pack everyday.And the night before it, I didn’t sleep a wink, the sticks plus a cup of coffee just kept me awake to finish the job I was doing. 2 days before, I had heavily intoxicated myself with some friends. I have totally beaten up my body and the unexpected scary thing happened.
A family is a family. No matter what happens blood is still thicker than water. I have a conservative family and in the past I wasn’t in a very good relationship with them because of my wrong choices. This is the most interesting part so I hope carers should pay more attention from here.I wasn’t expecting but I felt blessed that even after all those years of my liberated life away from them, after being stubborn and rebellious, they never turned theire back on me when the unfortunate event happened. I just had a bit of nagging from my grandfather but except from that I had all the support and love I could get from them.I think that is also one of the reasons why I didn’t stay bed-ridden for long. I was just so blessed to have them and thankful at the same time.
Moral lesson: Never underestimate the love of your family and never abuse your body, even robots get drained.

4 thoughts on “Even Robots Get Drained!

  1. Philip Davey

    Thank you so much Miss Joie for sharing some of your story.It certainly touched my heart and struck a chord too. I too had a somewhat dodgy lifestyle before my stroke, poor diet,drinking, smoking too much, too much stress at work,stressful relationship, all am sure contributed to my aneurysm.Happily like you I had and have a close and loving family whose help then and continuing help now makes a huge difference to recovery. Please keep posting.


  2. I unfortunately lived a fast life filled with drugs, alcohol and tobacco smoking. On 12/24/99 all of that changed, 5 mos shy of 30 yrs old I had a massive brainstem locked in stroke. The ONLY thing that may have contributed to my episode was my use of tobacco as I was found to have a clotting disorder, APS. That should have been discovered 3 yrs prior as I was hospitalized at 26 for a DVT and while in there developed a PE. Wasn’t aware than just how serious this was for an otherwise healthy 26 yr old as my Drs. at the time treated like it was no big deal and something they dealt with on a daily basis. It was summed up and blamed on smoking and my use of bc pills and that I’d have to quit one or the other. While there a Hematologist checked my blood b4 I was started on thinners and found I had tested positive the anticardiolipid protein…..in other words the Lupus antibody and to come back and see him after my mandatory 6 months of coumadin therapy. Well when I went back to my drs. after the 6 mos, he declared me fine and dandy and took me off thinners. I asked about what about the Hematologist? He said he wanted to see me? Mind you this was a 2 Dr practice, either the other Dr. didn’t relinquish that information to his partner, the partner forgot or never read the chart notes from the hospital as they were in there. Either way I was told I “didn’t need to see a Hematologist” and I needed a referral then because of the type of insurance I had. Needless to say I never did see that Hematologist but quit female hormones, continued to smoke though until 3 yrs later. I had been having TIA’s multiple x’s a week for a couple mos b4. Day b4 I went to the Dr and complained about my right foot turning in sometimes, right forearm tingling & going numb and the biggest being I was going blind halfway in my right eye.He “examined” me said “I see nothing abnormal and (the now famous) you’re too young to have a stroke, go have your eyes checked.” Next afternoon I had a devastating brainstem stroke. All I could do at 1st was hear, blink and see.That was 15 yrs ago,I have FAR surpassed what I was ever expected to do again as the statistics back then were even more grim than today for a 30 yr old, yes, yes worse if you can fathom that one. If you come to the ER presenting with stroke signs and it’s been no longer than 3 hrs and it’s determined to be a clot. Many hospitals are now known as stroke centers and now regularly use clot busting drugs or perform thrombectomies and many are spared the majority of physical disabilities associated with having a stroke. However, the survivor’s who seem to be “cured” are often far from such. They have MANY effects normally, you just can’t see them visually. These survivors need speech therapy (speech isn’t only about speech) and should be assessed by a Neuropsychologist for not only SSA purposes if needed but to better know what areas of the brain that need to be worked with and if medication would help. Strokes do not discriminate, doesn’t matter how healthy, un-healthy, young, old, white, black, Hispanic, wealthy, middle class, poor etc you are stroke effects anyone and everyone it chooses to strike. We are alive……….which makes us survivors. Stroke tried, didn’t win so never let it. Keep on keeping on.


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