Survival Journeys

Though strokes often have common effects, each one is also different. And each stroke survivor's journey is as unique as the individual themselves. Survival Journeys features stories by and about stroke survivors, sharing their experiences and insights.


 

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Venous Strokes: Rare but Real

After an elective surgery, Sharon Wilson had some worrisome symptoms. Problems with her vision, dizziness and eventually, leg pains. Despite the problems, she went to work, where coworkers encouraged her to get to the hospital. Thank goodness she did.

The Truth About Caregiving

I have been a caregiver most of my adult life, both professionally and personally. Not only am I the mother of two adult children, I worked in health care as a nurse for over 20 years. On December 6, 2008, I had a massive hemorrhagic stroke. After that fateful day, I was no longer the caregiver.

Take Baby Steps Toward Your goals

“I don’t want you to worry.” Those were the words that made Danielle Robbins panic when she got an early-morning call from her sister Sara on May 12, 2012. Sara told Danielle that she thought their dad, Stephen Bishop, had suffered a stroke.

Beyond All Expectations

When Virginia McKinnon came home from work on Aug 9, 1988, she found husband Robert on the floor in fetal position. His determination and persistence and the value of support from others have been beyond all expectations.

Accepting Who I Am

After a massive stroke due to four ruptured aneurysms, Beth has never given up and never will.

Grieving the Old Self, Embracing the New

Stroke often changes a survivor’s ability to do things that are important to them, and the loss of what you personally, dearly valued in yourself can be very challenging. Survivor Rachel Scanlon Henry shares how her own process might’ve been better supported if she’d been conscious of the stages of grieving as she experienced them.

One-Handed Heimlich

Recently, survivor David Layton and his wife Charlotte found an alternate meaning for the phrase “single handed living.”

Donna Garlough's Why

Things were off that morning in February 2015. A headache, an inability to greet her baby with morning babble, things slipping out of her hand. Then she lost the feeling in her left hand, “That’s what forced me to say, ‘this is real, this is happening’.”

A Special Thank You

A tribute from survivors to any medical personnel who have ever worked with a stroke patient.

Lilian Tsi Stielstra's Why

Walking up the stairs, she felt “pins and needles” in her left leg. A few minutes later, her left arm had the same sensation. Then the left side of her face felt numb. “I realized it was a stroke because it was all on one side,” Lilian said.
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Archive »For Survivors

Finley the Service Dog: A Story of True Love

Finley, my Golden Retriever service dog, was rescued as a puppy, but ultimately, I was the one rescued by him. He is a hard worker, always ready to do his job, a constant AND faithful companion.

Service Animals

Mary Burch, Ph.D., director of the Good Canine Program at the American Kennel Club, and Michelle Williams, public relations coordinator at Canine Companions for Independence answer questions about what to know when considering getting a service dog.

Seizures After Stroke

Seizures are caused by abnormal electrical activity in the brain; sometimes a stroke can cause that. We explore this phenomenon with a neurologist, physiatrist and a survivor.

What to Expect from Outpatient Rehab

After stroke, about two-thirds of survivors receive some type of rehabilitation. Outpatient therapy may consist of Several types of therapy. Whether a patient is referred to inpatient or outpatient therapy depends on the level of medical care required.

When Stroke Affects the Parietal Lobe

The parietal lobe helps us make sense of sensory information, like where our bodies and body parts are in space, our sense of touch, and the part of our vision that deals with the location of objects.
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See allReturning to Work

Stroke Survivor Goes Back to Work . . . for Herself

As I approach the eighth anniversary of being in private practice, I think about how it all came about and how if I hadn’t had a massive hemorrhagic stroke, I might not have been so bold as to open my own business.

The ADA Turns 25

Starting in the ’70s, the disability rights movement learned an important lesson from the civil rights movement and got organized. Their goals were the elimination of attitudinal, communication, transportation, policy and physical barriers so as to integrate people with disabilities into society.

Returning to Work After Stroke

For many younger survivors, going back to work is often the measure for recovery. Here's some excellent guidance if you're working toward getting back into the workplace.

Working My Way Back

My journey started on September 8, 1995 at 5:30 p.m. I was 47. I got up from my chair and said I did not feel good and then collapsed onto the floor.
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Departments

Stroke Notes

Stroke-related news you can use about new scientific findings, public policy, programs and resources.

Readers Room

Articles, poems and art submitted by stroke survivors and their loved ones.

Life Is Why

Everyone has a reason to live a longer, healthier life. These stroke survivors, caregivers and others share their 'whys'. We'd love for you to share yours, too!

Everyday Survival

Practical tips and advice for day-to day living after stroke.

Life At The Curb

A unique perspective on survival by comedian and stroke survivor John Kawie.

Simple Cooking

Cooking at home can be a daunting task, but a rewarding one for your diet and lifestyle (and your wallet). Making small changes in your diet is important to your heart health. Here are simple, healthy and affordable recipes and cooking tips.

Support Showcase

Our new department highlighting the good work being done by stroke support groups from around the nation. If you are part of a successful support group we should consider featuring, let us know!