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I do the Impossible All The Time!

June 22, 2014

I am ... A Survivor

I do the Impossible All The Time!

At 32, I had my 2nd Brain Aneurysm and 1st stroke. I was signed to Suave House/Universal Records before this change in my life. I was also told I may never walk or speak again and to be put in a nursing home.

Hi, my name is Toni "Alika" Hickman. I put emphasis my middle name "Alika," because it means beautiful warrior, and after having my 2nd Brain aneurysm and 1st stroke at the age of 32 and becoming partially paralyzed, I eventually decided that this was a better fit for my identity now.

Before my 1st aneurysm in 2004, I was a hip hop artist signed to Universal/Suave House Records. I have been featured on Gold and Platinum albums, and worked with artist such as Jagged Edge, Peaty Pablo, Jazzy Pha, and more.

My 1st aneurysm didn't stop me to much; I had a small surgery & was back on the hip hop scene within 6mths. It wasn't until my 2nd brain aneurysm that happened while I was visiting New Orleans that my life was completely shattered. I was just out there celebrating the completion of my 1st album, and never expected that I would have to have brain surgery to save my life.

The doctors told my mom I had a 50/50 chance of remaining alive. The Doctors shaved all my hair off and started surgery. As they got in my head, my body went into shock and I also had a stroke while on the operating table. When I came to, I had big tubes going down my mouth and up my nose, I was paralyzed, I couldn't talk, and I couldn't add 2+2. The Doctors suggested to my mom that she put me in a nursing home, because they were not sure if I would ever be able to speak or walk again. So here I am, a 6 feet model type used to wearing my weaves down to my butt, to.. a woman with blackened eyes due to the surgery, and a completely bald head in a wheelchair with no voice & no confidence...only tears.

After 4 months in rehabilitation, falling, crying, depression, being extremely stubborn and being the youngest patient in the center, I finally walked out the hospital with a walking cane. They wanted to send me home with a wheelchair, but I refused. If I can walk, I will walk.They transferred me back to Atlanta to receive more rehabilitation.

Since then, I have done many things, including record music and speaking. I truly believe that nothing is impossible if you want it bad enough, but beyond that philosophy, no matter if remaining in a wheelchair, there is always room for happiness.

We have to dig deep to find our happy place, but it is always available. I am grateful for my life, and I am grateful for my stroke and aneurysms. The both have made me a better human Being, and for that I am eternally grateful. ~Alika


Your story is much like all the stories I've been hearing. My father had a stroke then a triple bypass then another stroke. Because he is elderly we were told to let him go. We chose the path of G-d and letting him decide and he decided my father had many more things to do and see before he was let go. He pulled through and is currently in rehab. They told us he would never speak again. He speaks just fine. He would never swallow again. He is eating (not solid food but eating nonetheless at this point). He is currently in rehab and we are waiting for him to walk. He is partilaly paralyzed. Your story gives us all hope that the impossible is possible. Thank you.

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