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My SAH Christmas.


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Hello 👋 My name is Martin. I have found these forums very helpful so I decided to share my own experience:


On the evening of the 12th of December, I was listening to music in my basement. After some time, I stood up to unplug my laptop and make my way to bed. Leaning over to reach for the plug I felt the same frontal throbbing pulse I had been experiencing intermittently all week. 


Whereas most sane people would probably get checked out as soon as these symptoms appeared, I, on the other hand, decided to take up jogging… 


I’m a keen cyclist. Most weeks I clock over 150 km. I took up jogging because my bike broke and I needed an immediate outlet to burn some energy and not drive my family mad with my antics. 


Transitioning from a resting position to a standing position seemed to initiate my headaches. A piercing pulse in my forehead that left me squinting and exhaling, as if I was trying to capture the pain by clenching my jaw, squeezing my eyelids sharply closed and blowing out with a sigh that whispered that something was not right at all. 


Apart from the early morning, all day I had felt fine and was feeling proud of myself for surviving my second ever jog. I reached down for the extension cord to unplug the laptop and that’s when the room flipped and began spinning. 


In my disorientation and I’m an attempt to steady myself, I had grabbed the extension cord which hung from the wall and ripped it from its socket, lassoing series of cables and plugs in the air as I found the floor. 


But of course, being a stubborn man in his 40’s, I was convinced that a good sleep would see me out the other side. I made for the stairway, at least I remember that was my intention. That’s when I realised I no longer had use of my legs. They lay lumbered heavy beneath me as I sat marooned in a pool of my own urine. 


My wife had heard the commotion and came down to the basement to see if I was okay. 


“I can’t feel my legs” I said, and that she needed to call an ambulance. 


Within 2 hours I was under the knife in surgery. My ruptured aneurysm was going to be treated by coiling. When the neurosurgeon told me the news, I remember feeling very calm. He told me that I had made a good start by myself and that not many people have a SAH and walk up the stairs and out to the ambulance by themselves. 


Quite quickly after my wife found me and the first response paramedic arrived, I found I had feeling in my legs again. My head was clanging with pain and my heart was throttling in my rib cage, but my legs worked just enough that I could stand up, clean myself up, get changed and walk out to the ambulance.


After a successful operation, I woke to find myself in the neurological intensive care ward, where I would spend the next two weeks and Christmas being monitored and recovering. 


I was released home to my family on the 26th of December and so began the road to recovery. First came the disorientation and headaches, then the muscle pain and light sensitivity. Being around my two young children has proven challenging - noise and commotion appear to be my biggest triggers. I become vacant and absent from the moment before my body becomes weak and the headaches arrive. 


Gradually, day by day, I have been feeling better. Not being locked in the bedroom all the time has been helpful — but equally, having that quiet, dark peaceful space when needed, has proved essential. I spend as much time as I can in the company of my family or friends. For me that’s been a real key, especially if I respect what has happened and listen closely to what my body is telling me. I allow myself to backtrack and cancel plans if I’m not in the right space. 


In the beginning, I felt a pressure to get better and show people that I’m doing okay. Ironically, the most effective approach has been to accept that I’m not okay and allow myself the time to heal.


All of our experiences will be different. I personally feel very lucky to be at the stage I find myself today. I know it’s not necessarily the case for everyone else. Start small and stay strong and most importantly, give yourself a break when times are tough. Talk and write about your experience if you can - I find it very therapeutic. It’s helped concentrate my love for those around me and I now cherish my life more than I ever imagined before the Haemorrhage. Yesterday I walked 18 km! 😅


The night my wife found me, a song was playing in the basement. In my falling I had unplugged my headphones and the music automatically started playing from the speakers. I was learning a song to play to my son - he’s a big Fraggle Rock fan 😊 it’s become the soundtrack to my whole Christmas catastrophe. Corny, I know, but allow me to share the lyrics if I may: 


Fraggle Rock - Follow Me


Every day the world begins again
Sunny skies or rain
Come and follow me
Every sunrise shows me more and more
So much to explore
Come and follow me
Every morning every day
Every evening calling me away
While the sun goes 'round
I'll still be found

Following the sound
Something's calling me
When the world goes drifting back to bed
Memories in my head
Wonders follow me
Every morning every day
Every evening calling me away


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Hi there


Welcome to family :-) 


You seem to have the best way to recover already sussed, so well done!  Besides what you're already doing, make sure you keep hydrated - helps massively with brain function!


I loved Fraggle Rock as a kid - changed a bit since then though I think!!


Keep us updated with your progress - it's always a help for those starting out on there road to recovery.


Take care

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Hi Martin :) 


A very warm welcome to BTG. 


Thank you for sharing your experience. As Sami says, well done! You have really sussed the best way to help yourself recover.


We look forward to hearing more from you and wish you well with your on going recovery.


Take care

Tina xx

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Hi Martin,

I love your "allow myself time to heal"...such wise words.  I had little patience with the process which made it harder.  

Please keep us posted on how you are doing.  We all get strength from each other.  Keep the music going, music makes everything brighter :)




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