Support Group Leader and Survivor
On March 2, 2009, at the age of 38, I had an ischemic stroke that
paralyzed the right side of my body, impaired my speech, memory, and vision,
and left me hospitalized for a month.
This changed my life as I knew it. I
worked extremely hard to relearn how to talk, walk and write. It was very
challenging and at times exhausting. But through it all I never gave up and to
this day, with the exception of those closest to me, I am proud to say you
would not notice the lasting effects of the stroke.
When my recovery became
manageable I wanted to give back. In April 2010 I became a volunteer at a rehabilitation hospital and, with the guidance of National Stroke Association's website, I began a stroke support
group. Our group, Miracles in Progress, has been helpful to stroke survivors
and caregivers alike. As the sole facilitator of this support group, I realize
now my true calling in life is to help others. I listen, support, encourage
and give advice to other survivors and caregivers.
Many affected by strokes
don't know what to do next. I have taken my experience and expanded on this by networking
with healthcare professionals and stroke organizations to create an abundance of
knowledge for myself and my group. I was a healthy 38-year-old wife and mother
who did not see this life altering event sneak up on me. Now that it has I
don't regret it. My stroke survival has made me a stronger person.