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About Kathy

  • Birthday 31/03/1957

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  • Gender
  • Location
    Colorado, USA
  • Interests
    Enjoy time with my four grandsons, travel, reading. I have recently put teaching on hold.

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  1. Hi Dawny. I certainly understand your comment “feeling nervous but also relieved” ~ and, have you in my thoughts and prayers. I try to keep myself busy on a house project or gardening so I do not perseverate about a procedure when they come up. Also, keep well hydrated. Sending hugs. ~ Kathy (Colorado)
  2. Oh, thank you for sharing this update. So thankful you have found a doctor who listens and is willing to provide answers for you. Yes, prayers answered. I do hope this gives you the courage to press on when you face doubts and trials. And, like so many of us had to learn don’t be afraid to reach out for support. The BTG has been my lifeboat during seasons of unanswered questions and times of discouragement. Now, that you have received comfort and calm in your affliction, you will be able to offer compassion and calmness to others who are in any affliction with that same grace and understanding. I have learned that when someone has had a brain injury there will be effects of increased irritability and depression at times. There is much wisdom in calling hotlines or support persons at such times. I definitely had increased anxiety in general after my SAH and did need a prescription through the worst of it. Now, I am doing much better. Take care of yourself. Kathy (Colorado)
  3. Dear friend, I am so sorry for your suffering. We cannot give medical advice. I am in the States so I do not know the emergency procedures and treatments for your location. We are told in my country to keep pursuing an answer. Maybe that would mean traveling to another clinic? However, that may not be an option. That you are alive if it was a brain bleed is a miracle itself. It takes time for your brain to heal. You can read posts on this site about what helped others after an initial “worse headache ever” experience. I can tell you what helped me. Drink lots and lots of water. My headaches were better with my head elevated when in a reclining position. Sleep as much as you can. I had a massive brain bleed so they are able to see the area on MRI even three years out. I also had hydrocephalus. I did have a spinal tap early on that confirmed SAH. It does get better. I would say 6 weeks post bleed I felt stabilized. Then, it was gradual improvements as the days went forward. It took about a year before headaches subsided significantly. I remember celebrating when I could sleep flat again! Today, stress and change in weather (barometric pressure) can bring on headaches. I have difficulty with memory and fatigue and I do have more mood swings (irritability) since the SAH stroke. My Christian faith keeps me pressing onward and choosing to live with gratitude and determination. I have also learned from dear ones on this site that singing helps (it is amazing how lifting your spirit in song heals your mind and soul) and humor (we find a new normal that has its quirks but also immeasurable joy) and acts of kindness (reaching out to others puts everything in perspective). I have read that sometimes the exact location of bleed is not found and my 3 angiograms did not help locate aneurysm. The neuro-surgeon said they believe an aneurysm imploded on itself and closed off. Please know we care. Where there is life there is hope. I am on blood pressure medications now. I too had very low blood pressure until the SAH. Now, it must be regulated with medications. Again, this is a community that understands and is here so you can ask questions and vent. Don’t give up dear friend. Your life matters. Sending my prayers and a big hug. By the way, some of what you say sounds like Covid variant symptoms. Have you been tested, vaccinated?
  4. Welcome. I am from the States, so emergency medical serivce may be different ~ but, with covid there are changes. I am so sorry you were alone through the onset of your medical emergency ~ it always helps to have someone there to advocate for a person and be a source of support. Glad you have been released and now in recovery. Don't be too hard on yourself. It is most important to let your brain "rest" and drink lots of water. Follow dischange instructions. It takes awhile to return to a regular routine, and for some of us we cannot return at the pace we had once lived. I hope you find encouragement and helpful suggestions at BTG as I did (3 years post SAH). Best wishes, Kathy (Colorado)
  5. Okay, this is a late post to my third year post SAH anniversary. Hurray. It was actually on March 6 and now it is (let me look at a calendar) March 17th (a pinch to all not wearing green). Our youngest two adopted children (we also have four adult children) are on Spring Break from school ~ not so spring weather-wise. We had a BIG snow blizzard a couple days ago. Lots and lots of shoveling. My eleven year old was upset that we didn't get to travel again (usually we travel over school breaks) and so my husband took him to a nearby hotel with a heated pool to celebrate. That worked. We were all going to go but then our other special needs adult neice (18) wasn't feeling well. So, we two stayed home. On the exact day of my SAH anniversary, my husband, youngest daughter (a nurse) and I went to get our covid vaccination (Johnson&Johnson, one shot). It was held at a fairgrounds about a 30 minute drive. Not a long wait in line as some places. I had a sore arm for several days and was very tired, but no other side effects. We have a phase eligibility program in Colorado. I am glad we qualified and were able to find an appointment. I am pressing onward in my SAH recovery ~ and, still struggle. The posts I've read on BTG have been so helpful and encouraging. Thanks everyone and keep posting. We have a new grandbaby ~ a little boy named Lucas. He was born October 30, 2020. Our sixth grandchild! I celebrate my 64th birthday the last day of this month. Two of my husband's sisters are flying in this Friday to visit. So, some travel is returning. My husband slipped on ice in early January and tore apart his shoulder rotator cuff tendon ~ OUCH. He had surgery on February 12. He has started physical therapy. We have been told that it is a long recovery (8-12 months to get full use of the arm). He is in a sling. He has been such a support to me and now we feel like we both have limitations! I've had to do more and do all of the driving (not easy post SAH). It has been an added challenge but also some lessons learned (maybe I was depending too much on my dear husband). I don't like that I forget not only moment by moment little things but have also forgotten chuncks of time and events. It makes me sad. However, I still find humor and joy admidst it all. Thanks to BTG and best regards to each of you. Kathy (Colorado)
  6. Hello Daff ~ happy 9th post SAH anniversary. I read your blog. Now, I know why Daff (at least, the poem suggests). WOW. It is something when you don't check in regularly on BTG and then when you do ~ everything you "catch up" reading speaks right to you! A "divine appointment" sort of thing. I have struggled on and off since my SAH and at times don't like the "new me" in the "new normal" BUT your blog hit a chord. I am a type A personality and control freak. Not that I didn't already know it, but I didn't connect how much it is interfering with my post SAH progress. I am a person of faith ~ so, even beat up myself more that I am not "carefree". I am still angry that it happened. Your blog really helped. I am three years post SAH and you are nine years. There is hope because as you say, "it is still a work in progress". It doesn't always make sense or work out as one expected ~ and that's okay. I think we can get stuck in a cycle of emotion~ dare I even admit ~ bitterness. I love how you say you developed "a practice of care, self and otherwise" ~ and, I think it really does start with self-care. I like in your blog how you said everyone (post covid) now knows a bit more about knowing that there is no 'going back to normal' and then you added, "instead there is only the promise of what comes next and what we make of that". Simple words but so profound. I'd almost have to rewrite your whole blog! It meant that much to me. Pray that I too can let go more. I love daffodils in Spring. Thanks Daff. Love, Kathy (Colorado)
  7. Belated hugs on six years post SAH, Claire. Well, I am impressed that you are running again. That makes me want to get up and at least walk more. : ) In the States we have a saying about your first year of college ~ and, gaining 15 pounds. Well, my first year of COVID has been like that. I have gained several pounds.Okay, so I need to just get out and put on foot in front of the other ~ right? I hope you had a good run. I like how you say "it is different" ~ it is so true for me and I am still learning that it is good. Thanks for your encouragement. Kathy (Colorado)
  8. Belated congrats on your 17 years post SAH. Funny how I feel I know so many of you in such a short time and we have never met. Thanks for your posts and encouragement. Yes, I am looking forward to more opportunities opening up for travel. Although, our family has enjoyed more of just being outdoors around our home area. Well, not in the last few days as we had a record snow blizzard! Love to you, Kathy (Colorado)
  9. I had a headache in the back of my head for almost 3 years post SAH. The neurologist always dismissed it and said it was expected (something about agitation from the residual blood). Long story, but my oncologist recently suggest physical therapy (PT) for the pain. She wrote a prescription. I was doubtful but decided to give it a try. My pain felt like a tight stretched band across the back of my head. After PT sessions twice a week for about 8 weeks ~ I actually had relief. I was amazed! The exercises and neck and spine manipulations really did help. I am just throwing this out as I never would have considered PT for any kind of headache. I am so thankful and recommend this as a possible option in some cases. Kathy (Colorado)
  10. Sorry for the delay, but Yippee ~ it is over! I hope that during the rest of your day you were able to relax. I also was given the choice to listen to music or have ear plugs during several MRIs ~ the music never was loud enough. So, I always ask for ear plugs now and it does help. You did well. 👍 Kathy
  11. I am just reading about dear Macca. My deepest condolences to his wife and family. His words were always so kind and encouraging. His words certainly brought strength to me on my SAH journey. Hugs to all the lives he touched. Kathy (Colorado)
  12. Yes, I never thought I was claustrophobic until I had my first MRI (before my SAH). I freaked out. I pressed the button and yelled “Get me out now!” They did. I told the technician that it felt like I was being buried. He sorta smiled and told me to look through to see that it was open at the other end. I felt very embarrassed, but he assured me that it was a common feeling. He was very helpful. He asked me what was my biggest fear. I said ~ that I wouldn’t get enough oxygen. He said, okay we can help with that fear. Then, he brought oxygen tubing and positioned it right near on my chin resting on my chest. It was blowing air. He also asked if I would like a cloth over my eyes. And, I had ear plugs placed in my ears. He was very patient. I finally went back in and finished the MRI. Now, I just ask for all of those accommodations whenever an MRI is scheduled and I have not had any problems! I kind of have to hold the tubing when going through as it does tug a bit. I hope you find what works for you to make it more comfortable. ~ Kathy
  13. Hello Alec. Yes, recovery is a process and it takes time. I am glad to read the progress you have made even if not completely back to your old self. I don't know if we ever get that back completely. Part of recovery for me is accepting a "new normal" and continuing to grow and learn. Things are not as they used to be. I think I am more prone to mood swings and irritability. I still get tired easily and have to take naps. But, life is good. I appreciate family and friends who take time to connect with me and are patient with the challenges I continue to encounter.
  14. Thanks for posting. I am so sorry for your loss. Yes, a sad but beautiful love story. It looks like your children are a great support. Continue strong in your recovery. Best wishes. Kathy
  15. Congrats on the post SAH five year mark. Good to hear your honest summary. I also find my experience a balance of gratitude and learning to accept a new normal. I am more irritable lately, but I think isolation during safer at home restrictions may be contributing to my moodiness. Yes, I agree that SAH brought lessons on empathy and compassion. Best wishes in your new career. ❤️ Kathy
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