On May 17, 1999, I had a stroke. I was only 32 years old with an eleven year old daughter and a six year old son waiting for me at home. I had a second one at the hospital that left me unable to walk or use the left side of my body. My husband was told I would not survive the night. Twelve years later I am still here. It took a good six years before I was able to drive and go back to work. Those were the hardest six years of my life. During that time I started a website for the condition that caused my strokes. The website sparked the creation of a foundation.
There are still physical reminders of my strokes. The fine motor skills of my left hand are poor. I still have some balance issues that have left me unable to run or climb. I have cognitive issues that have left me unable to comprehend the algebraic math I needed to complete my Bachelor's Degree in computer science. All of these issues are small incidentals when compared to the fact that I almost died twelve years ago. However, none of it matters because I'm here to see my daughter go off to college every morning. I'm going to see my son graduate high school this May. I'm also going to be celebrating my 24th wedding anniversary.
The strokes I had made a huge impact on my life, but I did not let the strokes define my life.