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Everything posted by Macca

  1. Macca

    12 Hour shifts

    Hi Joe, I used to sit at a screen a lot. My eyesight was ok, but I got tired after long periods at the screen. You should have a break every half hour, there are plenty of studies that back this up. However, one thing I did do was get my eyes tested and there are three possibilities I know of that will help. One is to see an optician and get them to make you a pair of glasses that are adjusted to your eyes (perfect or not) adjusted for your eyes in relation to the screen you sit at and which take the glare off the screen to make it easier on your eyes. Another is to buy an anti-glare screen that attaches to your VDU, again which takes the glare off and in some cases will increase the font size as well. These days you might be able to change the settings on your screen to do this, so go and see your office computer bloke/lady to see if this can be done for you. Best wishes, Macca
  2. Macca

    15 Years Tomorrow 4th February

    Congratulations Super Mario!! Have a great day tomorrow!
  3. Hi Vicky. Welcome to BTG. Firstly, your health is your absolutely number one priority. You need to keep going back to the team that treated you to seek re-assurances, to ask questions and to be sure the treatment you are receiving is the correct treatment. Then you can follow up your complaint - and if you were unhappy, you were absolutely right to complain. However, make sure you do it diplomatically and in the right way - you don't want to bite the hand that feeds you - nevertheless, they need to know that what they did wasn't acceptable. If, they say that saving your life was their priority, rather than having good manners, then you could cut them some slack. How else would they find out, and improve things if people didn't complain? In terms of talking about it making your blood pressure rise, I think there are a couple of points to bear in mind. 1) The clinical team are there to look after your medical needs, not your social ones, so sometimes it can seem as though they have just turfed you out and cut you off. It's just not their field of expertise that's all. 2) Find a close friend to talk to in a calm situation who can sit down with you and let you talk about what has happened to you, without judging you, or telling you that you may be getting upset too easily. They just need to let you get it all off your chest, and you will feel a lot better for having done that. 3) Set down some questions on paper and then approach your doctors armed with that. It is much easier to do that and talk in a structured way than with an adhoc approach that can get out of hand because of your understandable emotions, in play because of what you have gone through. 4) Although the people treating you are probably very good at what they do in repairing you, in almost all cases, they have not lived the experienced themselves, and so they don't have that social empathy that we have for you, for instance. 5) Now that you have complained, let the investigating body do their job, they are taking the strain for you now, so try not to get too worked up about it. you can only make your next move when you get a reply to it. In the mean time, talk to people, such as your friends and family, who you know will lend you a sympathetic ear. It is very difficult for you, being at the centre of this, not to get emotional because it is without doubt, a very real and terrifying experience to have lived through, However, you will find that their response may feel 'matter of fact.' If I were you, I would get your friend or family member to open the letter in your presence, and take you through it line by line, talking about it as you go, making sure you take in what it says, with their support to hand. Just my opinion, that's all. Good luck and best wishes, Macca
  4. Macca


    Hi, welcome to BTG! I sense that you are a person who is very independent and who likes to help everyone else, but doesn't like to accept help when the boot is on the other foot. Welcome to the club. There are many of us on here in the same boat. Good advice from Casey. Have a think about that! The emotions you are feeling are quite common in the aftermath of SAH, so don't beat yourself up about that. Emotional turmoil of one kind or another often crops up. In the meantime, just consider what has happened to you. Time for you to think out of the box for a minute. This change has been thrust upon you in an instant. You had no time to prepare, no time to ask for help - it just happened and there you are, plonked in no mans land, up the creek without a paddle. Now what you see is people around you offering to help, whereas previously, in what seems like only moments ago, you were one of that group. You've been tossed out of the boat by a freak wave and these others are now trying to help you to get back in the boat! Accept their help. If you were tossed out of a real boat, you would accept their help without a second thought to get back in - so what is different? I know it is difficult to accept at the moment, but as time goes on and you accept what has happened, you will reflect more and understand what I am trying to convey to you. We've been where you are and we've lived it and came out the other side. You will too. There is absolutely no reason for you to feel guilty - although I know the feeling - but in life everyone needs a helping hand from time to time. You can't get through life in splendid isolation. Humans are social animals - we interact with each other, it's what we do - it's just that now it is your time to take, instead of giving - it's just that you weren't ready for it that's all. You were just unlucky in that it happened to you - but lucky that you came through it relatively unscathed. Your lottery ticket just came up! Grab that second chance with both hands and help your daughter grow into the woman you always wanted her to be - You can still do it - go for it. Watch her achieve, watch her get married and have children of her own - it's all there in front of you and you will be there to see it! No guilt - you still have a massive role to play in life - learn from your experience and use it to full advantage in yours and your daughter's future. So accept help with good grace, and with the love that it is being offered with. They are doing for you what they know you would do for them in a heartbeat. Think positively and make the most of your opportunities and that is the best thanks, and probably the only thanks, that anyone will want from you. Good luck and best wishes, Macca
  5. Macca

    My story up to now - Maria

    Hi Maria, My heart goes out to you. You have had a really tough time of it and your compassion is endless. Although you are in a difficult position, it speaks volumes about the kind of person you are and how lucky Paul is to have you in his life. You are doing all you can, and huge respect and love to you for that. You can do no more than you are already doing, so please don't reproach yourself in any way whatsoever. As I said to you in an earlier post, all you can do is deal with circumstances as they are. Yes, they are upsetting, for sure, but you are doing the right things. You can do no more than that. Please come on here and offload when you need to and we will try to help and/or support you in the best ways we can. Macca
  6. Congratulations Julian! Glad you are progressing, still on 'the long and winding road.'
  7. Hi Trish, With reference to your question above, it depends on individual circumstances and treatments given to you by your healthcare professionals. Not everything is down to SAH, but whatever happens, you can't control the past, only the future. Learn from the past and move on as best you can. You may have to adapt certain things in your life, but you've already shown you can do that. With regards to the medical aspects, only your doctors and you can answer them. Some may take longer than others, just try not to let anything stand in the way of enjoying your life. Some things may be permanently changed - not better or worse, just different - that's the way to look at it, in my opinion. Best wishes Macca
  8. If you are worried, the thing to do is to go and get checked out by your doctor or the team that dealt with your NASAH. Sadly, we are unable to give medical advice since we are not qualified to do so. There could be many reasons/explanations why this has happened, and they may not be related to the NASAH. The lesson, though, for you, is to listen to your body when it gives you signs it isn't happy with what you are doing, and also, don't be fooled into thinking you can do anything on days when you feel good. You aren't stupid, you weren't to know you would have such a reaction. Take care - go and see your medical team for professional advice!
  9. Macca

    Clive - Four and a bit years on...

    Hi Clive, Mine was over eight years ago and was my left anterior communicating artery. I was coiled too. I recognise much of what you say and I too can remember old footy results but can't remember today's or last weeks! welcome to the club! Frustrating at times, I know. However, you survived and things get better. Mine happened at 54 and I retired four years later and haven't so much as looked back once. Enjoy your retirement. Just remember when you are next out in the sunshine having lunch, your ex colleagues are inside, toiling away, stressed and complaining about being overworked and underpaid! There are some things and people I miss, but I definitely don't miss some management colleagues and the stress I was under, often unnecessarily, because of others incompetence and intransigence. Hey - enjoy life, you got a second chance, make the most of it! You are learning to change things around a bit and eventually you will settle into the new normal for you. Glad to have you on board! Macca
  10. Macca

    One year today

    Hi Angela, Congratulations on reaching the one year milestone! Yes , you still have problems but on the bright side, they are able to do something about them, which is not always the case! Try to look at the longer term benefits rather than the short term angst. Once the procedures are done, they're done and you can look forward with confidence that there will be continual improvement and a better future ahead. Great news that you are keeping a diary. It works. Another technique I find useful with things I want to remember is to keep on repeating them until they transfer into your longer term memory. Using your diary will help with this too if you keep writing things down and looking at it frequently! Good luck and I wish you well in your treatment programme!
  11. Well done Paul and John! I am 8 years out and now 63, and you are right, there is life after SAH. Just make adjustments to what you did before. Change the way you do things, sometimes it will take a little longer and we each have our personal journey but we get there in the end - well done lads! I took early retirement and I wouldn't go back to work if they paid me - I love it!
  12. Macca

    SAH, 14 years on.

    Hi Jean, You have a positive outlook which is great. You are right in that you are 'the only one who knows how you feel' and that 'you are looking to be the best self possible.' Wasn't that always the case, but that now you are just simply more conscious of it? Now you are aware that something was trying to stop you doing that, but instead of making you fail, all it did was to reinforce your need to redouble your efforts to be the best you can? That is fantastic because far from defeating you, you have become a new you, a different ,resilient you with a new and invigorated value of the importance of making the most of your life. Those people who have never had a SAH don't get that . You don't do anything better or worse you just do it differently. Every day is a challenge, you say, but wasn't that always the case too? I hope others take heart from your words and derive some comfort from them. I think you have recovered well, not just physically, but mentally also, and you are an example for us to look to for inspiration. There is always room for improvement, (and recovering from a SAH doesn't make it easy, I know), but we think that when we are one hundred per cent well too don't we? Embrace the changes in your life. I think you are doing just great. Well done! Best wishes, Macca
  13. Macca


    Hi JoJo, Like Clare says, you will become accustomed to a new you over time. You will find lots of the old you in the new you, it just takes a bit of time to recognise it and accept that what has happened has happened and none of us can turn the clock back. However we can shape the future. You say you did things hardcore - well now you may have to do things lighter-core but do it for a bit longer and bit slower, whatever your body will accept. it has a way of telling you when you've had enough, so learn to listen to it and accept its new boundaries. You won't be better or worse, just different. You just have to be a bit more flexible in what you do. Change occurs in all our lives, but most of it happens gradually over a period of time. You've just had it thrust upon you rather abruptly, and it takes a bit of time for you to re-adjust. When you get a bit of time to yourself, get a pen and paper (remember them?) and sit down and go through your daily routines and see what you can get rid of, what you can do differently, what you can delegate, and so forth. You'll be amazed at what you can come up with. Do things a little more moderately and create the space to do things for yourself and your family, and get them to do a few more things for you. It just takes a little time and planning and some proper discussions with those around you - it can be done. If you leave things as they are, life will be more difficult than it need be, so change it and it will improve your health, your mood and your state of mind. That in turn will rub off on those around you and everyone's a winner! As the Spaniards (and Iola above, it seems) say, manana, manana (tomorrow, tomorrow). Lots of good advice above, pick out what you need and be positive about it. Don't be afraid of change, it's what makes you resilient! Good luck, Macca
  14. Macca

    Ten Years Today

    Well done Colleen! Many congratulations! What's that other saying? When the going gets tough, the tough get going! Don't let the blip be the thing you remember, what about the good things in the 9.95 years. Good beats bad - that's the headline! Just goes to show though, that even ten years out, a SAH can still have an effect. Think positive thoughts, you're through the blip and hopefully it'll be a long, long, time before you suffer another, if at all. Best wishes, Macca
  15. Macca

    2 year MRI scan

    No, not necessarily. They may call you in just to discuss your result and reassure you all is going to plan. On the other hand, if they have spotted something, then far better to know about it and tell you what they propose to do about it than to just leave it! I am eight years out and every time I had a scan I saw the consultant. There was nothing to worry about. My SAH was from an irregularly shaped (rather than the usual berry shape) bleed and I was coiled and kept an eye on for longer than is normal. Nothing was wrong and each time I had a scan I was ok and the consultant told me so. So don't panic. If it had been urgent they'd have called you in sooner! Best wishes, Macca
  16. Macca

    Comeback - Bill

    Hi Bill, I didn't know you back then - my event hadn't happened then,and I didn't know this site even existed. However, what I can see is that you had the strength to carry on, that you were given strength in return by your family to do so. But also, you gave them strength - a kind of push me, pull you type of strength where you both had a common goal that you came through together - and as a team, you won the match and came through it. Now it's time to win the league and keep on winning, every battle, every day! You say you are not in control, but you are, just not of the same things. They're not better or worse, just different. Glad to see you meet others with different problems, but fighting them together you have found a way to overcome them and find solutions. Life isn't easy, but it is life. I try to look at the other side and try new things that I can do, rather than at what I used to do, but no longer can. The only reason I look back now is to learn from things, but I try not to dwell on them, rather use them as a stepping stone to new ventures and abilities. This 'little thing in your brain' is like a set of points in your car, just because they sometimes fail doesn't make you a bad car, you just need to re-adjust the points and away you go! Bill, you've come back, make the most of us and stay in touch, when you're happy or when you are sad. Like someone said 'you fix the roof when it's sunny, not when it's raining!' Welcome back Bill!
  17. Macca

    New here - Samantha

    Hi Sam, I was treated (coiled) at Salford Royal. It has been rated the second best hospital in the country recently and the care I had there was second to none. The surgeons there are excellent and the hospital care is superb and the nurses excellent at what they do. I hope that provides you with some reassurance! Your son was excellent and you are lucky he was around for you! Your parenting skills haven't gone away so don't beat yourself up about that one. Your recovery time has been short - it takes a long time to get over these things and a second operation like the one you are about to undergo will cause you to require even longer to recover. Takeaways - so what - some people practically live on those these days. You just concentrate on getting through this - everything else can be dealt with later. Health is no1 priority for now. Make sure you tell each other you love each other and resolve to fight this and recover as best you can. It may take a long time but every journey starts with a single step.
  18. Hi Valene, With regards to stress, no one knows for sure what it can or can't do. it is almost an immeasurable thing because it is different in each and every person and there are so many external factors that can affect results or outcomes, such as mood, the issue that causes the anxiety, other domestic or business issues in your life that may be at play etc. So the thing to do is to keep in touch with your medics and try to do things that don't place any extra pressure on you than is necessary. Rising blood pressure can be caused by lots of different things and they may - or may not - be related to your bleed. In effect, you are asking for an answer we cannot give. The way to play this is to evaluate what causes you stress and pressure at the moment and then try to cut down - or cut out completely - those things and let your doctors do the rest. Common sense is that pressure and stress after a bleed is the last thing you need - so reduce it as best you can. Above all, talk to those around you to help relieve, or spread the load, of those pressures. Good luck! Macca
  19. Hi, If you are worried, go back and get yourself checked out and at the same time get professional advice from your medical team on how to regulate your blood pressure. When you know what the problem is ie; you have identified it, then you can do something positive about it. Just speculating and worrying won't do you any good. Just worrying will increase your stress levels and that in itself is not a good thing. It will just eat away at your nerves, so take back control over the problem, identify it, isolate it and tackle it! Good luck, I wish you well! Macca
  20. Thank you Charlie. I was, of course responding to Michelle but if others can benefit from it that's great. The problem with SAH is that there is no single answer that fits all. We all have to find our own answers, but other peoples answers can help you find them quicker than if we are all left to our own devices. I too suffered headaches, and lying down in a darkened, quiet room, lots of sleep and hydration eventually eased it for me, but it all takes one common denominator - and that is time. Brains need to re-wire themselves, blood is re-absorbed into the body, and it doesn't happen overnight. We are lucky to be here after doctors repair the initial damage and it is important, in my view, to give ourselves the best chance of a second chance at life, by not trying to get back to normal. or as near normal as possible, whatever that is (it's different for each and everyone of us) too soon. Our own individual attitudes to life, and the circumstances we are in, dictate our moods because of threats to the way we perceive the future. The way I look at it is, don't see it as a threat, see it as an opportunity to go and see the scenic route in life instead of always trying to go down the motorway (freeway or interstate if across the pond). You never know, you might just enjoy it. Take others in your life down that route with you too. As long as you can find something to pay your bills, anything extra is a bonus. Money isn't everything. Health and happiness with a family that loves you, is. That's just me. I came to accept that things were different but it probably took me twelve to eighteen months to fully realise it. I have come a long way, but I would be a liar if I said it was easy. It isn't. It is a long hard slog, but one can get through it with patience and perseverance. It was mentally, as well as physically tough. Now, I am happier than I ever was and enjoy my new life immensely. I think the key is as much about the way you think about things than what you actually do. Always look at the flip side and then make your decisions. Two sides to every story. Try and look at what you can do, not so much at what you can't do. It isn't a sign of weakness to change things around, it is a sign of strength. Weakness is in not changing, for that is what will bring you down, whereas changing will help you grow and to thrive. Best wishes, Macca
  21. After such an attack on the very core of your being (for that is what your brain is), a few weeks is nothing in terms of recovery and you will see from reading all the different subjects on here, that recovery is a long, slow process. You can't just get up and carry on as though nothing has happened. It just doesn't work like that. What you need more than anything is time. Time for your brain and your body to heal. Time for you to assess and make changes to your lifestyle to accommodate the 'new you.' This event has happened and you can't turn back the clock. But you can shape your future. You are right to isolate the feeling of being 'dumped.' Most doctors have not themselves experienced a SAH, but they know what they have or haven't read. However, they haven't 'lived it' like we (and you) have. The doctor's role is clinical, not social, and that is where other agencies should have a role, but often don't, and the reasons often boil down to who is going to pay for it. Probably worse in the US than in the UK, but the existence of this site is an example of the paucity of support post SAH anywhere. The brain injury you have suffered isn't visible and now that you are back up on your feet, others think you are back to normal. But you aren't. Probably, to a clinician, you appear to be ok and all the wires are in the right place and that's why they think you are ok. But there is much more to it than that. There are outside factors such as emotions, headaches, fatigue, families who care, but without the understanding of the consequences of what has happened to them and to you. So you have to tell them. You need to talk to people, to communicate to them that things aren't back to normal, they aren't the same, and that you need more help to adjust. That includes your family, your work colleagues, friends and your doctors. You need to tell them that you look the same but on the inside you are not. At the moment, it seems you are taking everything on yourself and everyone else is just blindly going on as though nothing has happened. That has to stop. If it doesn't, you will quickly burn yourself out and then where will you all be? Work out what you can change what, you can delegate, what you can shut out. Take stock. This isn't about admitting defeat or that you are somehow a lesser being than you were before. You aren't. You are probably more of a person, stronger, older and wiser. But none of us can go through life without changing. Some changes are gradual and some come upon us more abruptly, as in this case. You don't need to see a professional necessarily, but just sit down and re-evaluate where you are so you are happy in yourself as to where you sit and then talk to the people around you and make the re-adjustments needed to help you cope with the change your body and brain have forced upon you. Don't bottle it up, just tell it like it is, like you have done on here and tell those around you that they have to change too, to a lesser or greater degree, because things can't just go on as they have before. Things have changed, circumstances have changed, and therefore the solutions have to change too. If you feel up to it, that's taking control and is called leadership. That's my view, looking in as an outsider to the situation as you describe it. I wish you luck. best wishes, Macca
  22. Wow! Where did the time go! 8 years and I'm still here! 1st September 2010 changed my world and my gratitude to everyone who help save my life and rehabilitate me is as great today as it was at the time. I've also come into contact with so many wonderful people through this site who have helped me and to whom I have tried to pass on some of my own experiences. The bottom line, though, is that I survived and continue to live my life with optimism, grateful to many people and the progress in life sciences that makes it all possible. Thankful that I live in the 21st century! Oh - and six years ago today, I got married to Sandra = another reason to celebrate!
  23. I am just eight years out and I still have memory problems. Names and proper nouns are a particular problem, especially when I am introduced to new people. It is worse when I am tired. I find the best way to deal with it is to write names down at the first opportunity and then to repeat, repeat, and repeat, until they transfer into the long term memory which is less susceptible to failing. Make sure you rest properly, recognise the signs of fatigue coming on - and carry a notebook and pen or make use of your notepad on your cell phone! Change is difficult to deal with because it is an abrupt change, but you have to persevere and find a way round it that works for you. The above is what works for me. I have to say my memory is nowhere near as bad now as it was just after SAH, but I still have my moments! Good luck, Macca
  24. Jean, You're welcome. Don't try to over analyse it. You are just telling it like it is. Let others decide if you are explaining or moaning. All that matters is that they get the message, one way or the other. From your own perspective, you are doing what you need to do to get along. Don't try and cater for them. Cater for yourself. You have enough to deal with in your own problems without trying to second guess someone else's. If they take it the wrong way that's their problem, not yours. Just keep the communications going and be open to their receptiveness and closed to their criticism. They usually do that when they are trying to hide their own incompetence or insecurities. Just do what you can and to the best of your abilities, nobody can criticise that. Learn to say 'No.' That also helps and is a sign of strength of character, not a weakness. Good luck, Macca
  25. Fatigue is an ongoing problem for many of us. You're a Lamborghini on the outside but feel like a Fiat on the inside! A cruise liner with a motor boat engine! You have to adapt your ways to cope and educate the people you come into contact with if the need arises. To carry on with the engine analogy, how many cars do you see broken down at the side of the road and there is no visible reason as to what is wrong with it. It's only when you explain to the mechanic (your medical team) that they know what to do to make it right. Rest when you need to and do it well. Your body will tell you when, and it has its own inimitable way of doing so, as you have already noticed. Keep on explaining until they get the message - it's the only way! Good luck!