There are 60 seconds in a minute. 60 minutes in an hour and 1440 minutes in one day. That’s 10080 minutes in one week. I always wished for more minutes in the day and more hours in the week to finish work to get ahead on business. That all stops when something happens to your health, something where you don’t know if you will recover or exactly what is happening to your body.
I can remember everything down to minutes. Everything stopped or I should say started on May 20, 2015, at 5:22 pm. That is when I went into the Emergency Department and I didn’t leave until June 23rd, 2015 at 10:18 am. I cannot always remember words, place sentences together aloud but for some reason my brain wants me to recover time. Time which is something that changes everything.
I feel like each of these stories are suppose to start off this way. It was a dark cold night and I was deep in thought when this horrific life-changing event occurred when, in fact, it was a Wednesday at 5:22 pm on May 22nd. I had just completed a charity Big Bike ride for the Heart and Stroke Foundation and was convinced by my fiancé (now husband) that I should go to the emergency room because I had missed my earlier doctors appointment to get checked out because I had been having weakness on my left side particularly my left hand. I was being stubborn because why not, I had things to do, work to do specifically. I had opened my business (my dream for a long time) a year prior and worked long hours but I loved it.
I look back on all of the life changing events in my life including the loss of loved ones, graduating high school and then college, getting a job and then subsequently losing it, break ups, make ups, meeting the love of my life and getting engaged. Having a procedure on my heart which I thought would be the biggest health scare of my life besides having children until this had occurred. I have built up a big wall around me. I think others would call what would look like strength but for me it was the determination to get through what the next curve ball would be. It is the “you never know what others are going through” mentality, which I think I proudly have inherited from my mother who is a nurse and has seen the worse of the worse. She has always taught me that even though we may be having a bad day (and I mean everyone seeing you naked bad day – I will explain later) there is always someone out there that has a backstory or has experienced something on some level or worse so see the silver lining or positive out of the situation.
Sometimes I look back and think what did I do to deserve to have this great family who has helped me through this journey. As much it has been a physical journey it has been a mental journey as well. The mental recovery has been the hardest recuperation. I have felt so determined to get physically better and thankfully due to having perseverance and my age have been able to recover much faster. My brain and cognition recovery was not that cooperative.
On the night that I walked into the Emergency Room, I didn’t think it was going to be this serious. I didn’t think that my life would change forever. I had initially walked in because my left hand would not move and I had a small amount of trouble putting sentences together and finding words. This would only happen for short increments a few times a day and had been happening for about a week. Looking back now I was scared about the outcome, about what the doctors would find, if anything. We went into triage and since I did not have a severe headache (I am a migraine sufferer) they sent me back into the waiting room. We proceeded to wait and as we did I was beginning to lose function in my hand. My headache got a little worse but nothing alarming to what I have experienced. What I was more concerned about was my hand. My livelihood. I would look down at it and it wouldn’t move. It just laid there like a dead fish. I went to motion for my cup of tea and my hand flopped over the chair. my shoulder would move, my elbow but nothing after that. I pictured in my head reaching for the tea grabbing it with my fingers but still nothing happened. It was an out of body experience. I knew that something bad was happening. Fear and anxiety were building up. I just wanted to be okay. This was the beginning of a journey of learning about myself and the determination one can have when pushed to your limits.