Thank God I Had a Stroke by Barbara Gabogrecan 26.9.11

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Barbara Gabogrecan
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Thank God I Had a Stroke by Barbara Gabogrecan 26.9.11

Postby Barbara Gabogrecan » Sun Sep 18, 2011 2:21 pm

ImageIt is in this space that I usually introduce our Expert, but starting on Monday 26th September, I am going to share with you the experience of having a stroke and discovering that I also had a brain tumour. So many members have sent me such wonderful emails of support while asking me just what happened, that I thought this Forum would be a good way to share my experience, while allowing members to make comments if they wish.

In the picture of me, you will note that my hair is beginning to grow back. Pete shaved it off for me the night before surgery as I knew they would shave where the halo was attached to my skull to keep me still and where the surgery had to take place behind the left ear. I did not want a 'patchwork' effect of my hair, so figured it would all grow back at the same rate if it was shaved!

Many of us will, unfortunately, suffer from a serious illness or will have family members who suffer from such an illness as I have experienced. It is not only the patient who has to learn to compe, but the family also. And if you run a home based business and do not have any staff, then how to cope with the business and the health issues is something we all fear. Perhaps my story will give you some insight into just what to do and how to do it.

I am actually writing a book with the same title as this post ‘Thank God I Had a Stroke’ because if I hadn’t had the stroke, they may not have found the brain tumour until it was too late. Now that it is all over and I am trying to become productive once again, it is the side effects of the stroke that cause me the most problems.

A Doctor said to me “A stroke is often more of a problem than a heart attack. Once you have an operation, bypass or stint etc you usually fully recover from a heart attack. But when you have a stroke you seldom fully recover”. Yet it was the brain tumour that was life threatening.

If you want to ask questions or make comments, please do so. I will also let you know when the book is released (I am delighted that two members are going to read and proof read it for me). I am also looking for opportunities to speak at events as I believe that people want to know how to cope with the trauma of sudden, serious ill health, and my story could help them.

I have spent my life helping others and I need to feel that I am still worthwhile and have something interesting to share. I will commence my 7 days of posts on Monday 26th September
Barb
Barbara Gabogrecan assists HBB's to market their business online
http://www.HomeBasedBusinessAustralia.org

Barbara is an artist specialising in silk painting; her video is on page one of You Tube http://youtu.be/1ZA9HObN_Go
http://www.SilkPaintingByGabogrecan.com/

Having survived a stroke and a brain tumour, Barbara wrote a book titled 'Thank God I Had a Stroke' to motivate and inspire others suffering from similar afflictions.
http://GabogrecanStrokeRecovery.com/
Barbara Gabogrecan
 
Posts: 341
Joined: Sun May 03, 2009 12:57 pm

Re: Thank God I Had a Stroke by Barbara Gabogrecan 26.9.11

Postby Claire McFee » Fri Sep 23, 2011 6:17 pm

I am sure what you share with us will be really interesting, as always Barb :D . Glad you are doing so well.
Claire MFee
Organize Your Life
Claire McFee
 
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Re: Thank God I Had a Stroke by Barbara Gabogrecan 26.9.11

Postby Barbara Gabogrecan » Mon Sep 26, 2011 7:12 am

1. The Pain
It began with severe pain in the left side of my head. I had spent half an hour with a neighbour assessing whether or not I could help them train an unruly young Border Collie puppy(he was lovely, just not used to following any commands – I was looking forward to changing him around). I had prepared lunch and had just finished my soup when the pain began.

It was so severe that I could not speak.I was too busy concentrating on surviving the pain. Peter wanted to call an ambulance, but I managed to say "No" – I didn’t want to sit in a hospital for hours.

Peter then asked me if I thought it was Tic Delarough (a facial neuralgia which I had once before many years ago and my Mum suffers from it periodically). I said “what?” – he repeated it and I said in exasperation “I don’t know what you’re talking about!”

Pete then called the ambulance. When I got to the hospital they asked me my name and birthdate (which I knew) but then asked where I lived, where was I, who the Prime Minister was – I didn’t know any of these answers and kept thinking to myself “Ask Pete – he will know – just leave me alone!”

They sent me for a cat scan and told Pete that they were pretty sure I had had a stroke. Half an hour later the Doctor came to tell us the result of the cat scan. He said “I have good news and bad news….the good news is that you have had a stroke but it is a minor one; the bad news is that we have discovered a brain tumour.”

I had to go to Monash hospital in the city and waited many hours for an ambulance. Remember, this happened after lunch; I arrived at Monash at 1am and disturbed all the patient’s sleep!

By now the pain had gone and I felt fine…it nearly seemed as though it was a big deal about nothing!
It was the next morning that I got the shock of my life.
I will rell you about that tomorrow.
Love Barb
Barbara Gabogrecan assists HBB's to market their business online
http://www.HomeBasedBusinessAustralia.org

Barbara is an artist specialising in silk painting; her video is on page one of You Tube http://youtu.be/1ZA9HObN_Go
http://www.SilkPaintingByGabogrecan.com/

Having survived a stroke and a brain tumour, Barbara wrote a book titled 'Thank God I Had a Stroke' to motivate and inspire others suffering from similar afflictions.
http://GabogrecanStrokeRecovery.com/
Barbara Gabogrecan
 
Posts: 341
Joined: Sun May 03, 2009 12:57 pm

Re: Thank God I Had a Stroke by Barbara Gabogrecan 26.9.11

Postby Barbara Gabogrecan » Mon Sep 26, 2011 7:26 am

Thank you Clair for taking the time to comment. I hope that my message will help others who may have to cope with such a problem in the furure. I know many of our members have had cancer or lost or had a badly injured loved one through an accident. Everyome in the family suffer and have to learn to cope with a changed lifestyle. Perhaps my story will help.

By the way Claire, why don't you complete your profile to include your webaddress and get a backlink each time you leave a comment?

Luve Barb
Barbara Gabogrecan assists HBB's to market their business online
http://www.HomeBasedBusinessAustralia.org

Barbara is an artist specialising in silk painting; her video is on page one of You Tube http://youtu.be/1ZA9HObN_Go
http://www.SilkPaintingByGabogrecan.com/

Having survived a stroke and a brain tumour, Barbara wrote a book titled 'Thank God I Had a Stroke' to motivate and inspire others suffering from similar afflictions.
http://GabogrecanStrokeRecovery.com/
Barbara Gabogrecan
 
Posts: 341
Joined: Sun May 03, 2009 12:57 pm

Re: Thank God I Had a Stroke by Barbara Gabogrecan 26.9.11

Postby Debra Jarvis » Mon Sep 26, 2011 10:51 am

Hi Barbara, one of my favorite quotes is: "Every adversity is the seed of an equivalent or greater benefit!" Seems to me you are a living, breathing example of this! Looking forward to learning more from you as the week progresses!!! :idea:
Debra Jarvis
 
Posts: 18
Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2011 5:02 pm
Location: Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

Re: Thank God I Had a Stroke by Barbara Gabogrecan 26.9.11

Postby Barbara Gabogrecan » Mon Sep 26, 2011 12:18 pm

Hi Debra, thanks for your kind comments. One of my favourite quotes is "People are like T-Bags; they don't know their own strength until they are in hot water" I certainly felt stronger during this time, becasue I simply had to be!
Barb
Barbara Gabogrecan assists HBB's to market their business online
http://www.HomeBasedBusinessAustralia.org

Barbara is an artist specialising in silk painting; her video is on page one of You Tube http://youtu.be/1ZA9HObN_Go
http://www.SilkPaintingByGabogrecan.com/

Having survived a stroke and a brain tumour, Barbara wrote a book titled 'Thank God I Had a Stroke' to motivate and inspire others suffering from similar afflictions.
http://GabogrecanStrokeRecovery.com/
Barbara Gabogrecan
 
Posts: 341
Joined: Sun May 03, 2009 12:57 pm

Re: Thank God I Had a Stroke by Barbara Gabogrecan 26.9.11

Postby Barbara Gabogrecan » Tue Sep 27, 2011 9:13 am

2. My Shock
I had so little sleep that first night at Monash because two of the patients in my ward rang the bell constantly for the nurses. One woman kept saying “Excuse me, excuse me" every time a nurse came to see another patient. Eventually the quiet patient opposite me yelled "shut up!" By morning we were all sleep deprived.

So I got out of bed around 6am and decided to sit in the chair and read a book that Peter had packed for me. I looked at it and it sort of seemed familiar – yet at the same time it wasn’t familiar. I kept trying to read the name of it and the Author, but it seemed strange and I could not make any sense of it.

So I opened to the first page and went to read. I looked in amazement at the jumble of letters and thought “Good grief, Pete has purchased this book written in another language – the silly duffer!” I stared at it for a bit longer and then worked out one word ‘the’…it was then I realised that it was written in English but that I couldn’t read it!

I burst into tears. I was an author and reading and writing was my life. A nurse tried to console me and assured me that I would improve. The stroke had affected my brain. The next day they sent a therapist to check me out because ‘I had lost my memory’, but when I completed some of the tests she didn’t think it was my memory, but rather that my brain could not make words from the letters that it saw or visualized.

So another therapist was sent to test me. One of the things she asked me to do was to write my name, which I did. But then when I looked at it I thought I had written it incorrectly. “No, that is right” she assured me.

When she left I thought "well if I could write my name, perhaps I could write". Peter had also packed me some paper and a pen. So I got it out and began to write. “I’m OK” I thought with some excitement. I could actually read the words as I wrote them. But by the time I got to the second line, I could not read the first line.

But that wasn’t going to stop me, I wrote and wrote. I was on my third page when a group of doctors came to see me. “What are you doing?” one asked.

“Writing” I replied.

“Does it make any sense?” he asked.

“I don’t know – I can’t read it! You have a look and tell me”.

He looked and showed the other Doctors “It makes perfect sense” he said.

Apparently this was quite an unusual occurrence…there was a word for what I was experiencing (I can’t remember what it was) but they had never seem anyone with it before. So they asked could student Doctors come in and test me as they all had only ever read about it in text books previously.

So I wrote every day and walked the corridors for exercise trying to read the signs as I went, but without success. It seemed as though I was always busy; but I never thought ‘Why me’ or fretted…I just decided that it was time to relax. Peter brought me a CD player with earphones and for the first time in my life I listened to music without doing anything else. It was divine.

But the news I was given next was not so good. More about that tomorrow.
Barb
Barbara Gabogrecan assists HBB's to market their business online
http://www.HomeBasedBusinessAustralia.org

Barbara is an artist specialising in silk painting; her video is on page one of You Tube http://youtu.be/1ZA9HObN_Go
http://www.SilkPaintingByGabogrecan.com/

Having survived a stroke and a brain tumour, Barbara wrote a book titled 'Thank God I Had a Stroke' to motivate and inspire others suffering from similar afflictions.
http://GabogrecanStrokeRecovery.com/
Barbara Gabogrecan
 
Posts: 341
Joined: Sun May 03, 2009 12:57 pm

Re: Thank God I Had a Stroke by Barbara Gabogrecan 26.9.11

Postby Geoff Haw » Tue Sep 27, 2011 12:32 pm

Well hullo my excellent friend Barbara! I know from experience that you have spent much of your life helping others, so I am pleased that you are also taking good care of Barbara!

Yes, when we have major issues crop up in our lives, and especially if we come out the other end with a positive prognosis, it certainly puts things into perspective. I am reminded of your ecstatic experience of listening to the music without doing anything else but just enjoying the beauty of the music! It's a bit like 'smelling the roses', which is something I do much more of now, especially as we now grow and enjoy them.

Of course, the title of your week's contributions are a real magnet to interest readers: Thank God I had a Stroke! It seems to me that these days many people focus on the 'poor me' and 'why did this happen to me' elements. To turn a seemingly negative event into a positive takes strong mental discipline and power, and for a lady who had her grey matter severely compromised for a time, you seem to have had your positive cells retained!

I just hope and pray that you and Peter will pull out of all this trauma as you would wish, and that you can continue to inspire us with your stories. They are the stuff of life, real life! Every good wish, from you friendly friend, Dr Geoff!


Dr Geoff Haw FACE CMC Cert. IV Training & Assessment, Managing Director, Sagacity Services
T: +61 3 5998 4932 M: 0418 580 081 PO BOX 4007 NARRE WARREN SOUTH VIC 3805
E: geoff@sagacityservices.com.au
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Re: Thank God I Had a Stroke by Barbara Gabogrecan 26.9.11

Postby Barbara Gabogrecan » Tue Sep 27, 2011 12:50 pm

Hi Geoff, such a lovely post! Thank you so much for your friendly words and your continued support. Your kindness is so much appreciated as is your wellwishes. It is so much easier to cope with the shock of sudden illness when you have the support and love of your friends. :D
Barb
Barbara Gabogrecan assists HBB's to market their business online
http://www.HomeBasedBusinessAustralia.org

Barbara is an artist specialising in silk painting; her video is on page one of You Tube http://youtu.be/1ZA9HObN_Go
http://www.SilkPaintingByGabogrecan.com/

Having survived a stroke and a brain tumour, Barbara wrote a book titled 'Thank God I Had a Stroke' to motivate and inspire others suffering from similar afflictions.
http://GabogrecanStrokeRecovery.com/
Barbara Gabogrecan
 
Posts: 341
Joined: Sun May 03, 2009 12:57 pm

Re: Thank God I Had a Stroke by Barbara Gabogrecan 26.9.11

Postby Brian Baker » Tue Sep 27, 2011 2:10 pm

You're very brave Barbara, I'm certain you will produce a book that will help others who have had strokes, and the people that care for them. I nursed my Dad when he had a stroke and couldn't talk - it was very frustrating.

All the best with everything.

Brian
http://www.atractorproductions.com
Brian Baker
 
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