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Jodi C.
Jodi C.
Survivor

Tracey E.
Tracey E.
Survivor

Reciprocal Empowerment
Reciprocal Empowerment
Healthcare Professional

Daily Inspiration
Daily Inspiration
Stroke Survivor

Sheila H.
Sheila H.
Survivor

Shawn V.

"I am two today!"
"I am two today!"

Survivor

I am two today!

May 12, 2009 I survived a Wallenberg stroke.  I was 47 years old at the time.  I am Shawn Denise Vaughn from Greer, SC.  Proud wife, mother, and grandmother to three beautiful babies. Its these babies, my adult children and husband that keep me going.

I've gotta be strong and just keep pushing on, there's always gonna be another mountain. "The Climb" by Miley Cyrus.

We recently celebrated our oldest grandsons 3rd birthday. About an hour before the party he had an accident and injured his tiny precious hand. Parents panicked, fear they needed to cancel his day of celebration. After a trip to the ER, and his tiny hand bandaged, his special day went forward. When we arrived at his party he with hand bandaged ran up to us cheering, "I'm 3 today mee maw!!! I'm 3 papa!!!" His hand forgotten, the happiness of a new year beaming in his beautiful blue eyes.

Our youngest grandson is a doer, mover and fixer of all things. On any given day he will rearrange the chairs on the front porch or in the yard to his liking. Recently one of the railings on the bannister fell off leaving a space large enough for him to fit his body through. Nothing entertained him more than to stick a foot, a hand, or even his head through this opening and watching his mother and I go into sheer panic. But in this tiny little one year old there was no fear for what would happen next, just enjoyment of his new found entertainment.

This past week our grandaughter came and spent the morning with me. I sat and marveled at her absolute determination to stand on her little rubber band legs. Forget crawling, its not a part of her vocabulary. She will pull up on the table, the entertainment center, or her jumpy. Then the excitement sets in and she looks at me with those crystals eyes as to say, "Look what I can do nay-nay!" Hands waving in excitement and then crash boom. Down she goes only to begin that uphill battle again. Again, no fear.

I have learned so much from these beautiful children. "It's not how fast I get there, or what's waiting on the other side, it's the climb!" In the past two years I've learned it is an uphill battle and there have been times I've wanted to throw the towel in asking myself why, where is all this hard work getting me, and yes the infamous question of why me has crept in here and there.

The first year was learning how to walk, see, even feed myself. The second year has been one of acceptance. I've been diagnosed with neuropathy in the left side of my body, my gait will never be normal again. I recently read a complete chapter of a book, it was only three pages long, but nevertheless an accomplishment for me. The right side of my face is still numb and my throat still has paralysis. The nerves in my eyes are "off". "But I've got to keep strong and just keep pushing on. It ain't how fast I get there. It's the climb."

My daughter gives me my independence although I see the watchful looks when she thinks I don't. My son automatically extends his arm for me to hold going down flights of stairs. I go in public more. My husband is my caretaker making sure I take meds daily and regularly, always providing a shoulder for me to cry on when its needed, and always still giving me those looks across a room letting me know everything is okay. When I stumble he is always there to pick me up, but its the fact they all allow me to be me that means the most. "It's always going to be an uphill battle. The struggles I'm facing, the chances I'm taking, sometimes might knock me down, but I'm not breaking. "

I will keep on moving, keep on climbing, I will keep the faith!

To Monk, Doodle-Bug and Possum nay nay is two today!!!

 

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Display of the Faces of Stroke stories does not imply National Stroke Association's endorsement of any product, treatment, service or entity. National Stroke Association strongly recommends that people ask a healthcare professional about diagnosis and treatment questions before using any product, treatment or service. The views expressed through the stories reflect those of the authors and do not reflect the opinion of National Stroke Association.

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