Page 54 - Wallingford Magazine Issue 23, Summer 2019
P. 54

 We arrived on the rooftop in Hartford and an entire crew was there to greet us. I was wheeled down a corridor and they explained what they were going to do. I attempted to nod my acceptance and express my approval. I lost track of everything that
was happening as someone said “you’ll be going to sleep now. Just relax if you can.” Sleep overtook me quite rapidly, with a few short, pleasant dream fragments of things totally detached from my present circumstance. I woke up in the recovery room with my wife Paula there, and as soon as I had my wits about me, I raised my right hand, wiggled my fingers and almost shouted “I can move again!” I was so happy I had regained what I had lost. I could talk normally. I could move both feet, both hands! I was relieved more than you can imagine. I was so thankful.
There’s a moral to this story, and simply put it is this: Learn the warning signs of stroke. Think of the acronym F.A.S.T.
F – Facial drooping, slurred speech, numbness on your face.
A – Arm or leg numbness or both, loss of motor control, difficulty understanding your surroundings. S – Sudden severe unexplained headache, possible loss of hearing or vision, sudden vertigo
and confusion about what’s happening.
T – Time is of the essence. If you have ANY of
these warning signs call 911 immediately. Do not wait to see if it passes.
Learn these warning signs and if you ever think you or someone you’re with has any, take immediate action. You may literally only have seconds before incapacitation hits. It may be a stranger on the
street who appears drunkenly incapacitated, and you may be the only one who recognizes it as a stroke. If you are alone and you get any warning signs, call someone immediately to let someone know you may be having a stroke and may be about to become incapacitated. Use the word “stroke” also, to make no mistake what you are telling them. Please don’t hesitate. You may suffer residual handicap from it, as lost time is lost brain cells and lost bodily function. Make no mistake... It will change your life.
Stroke knows no mercy. It is not a respecter of persons, of status, or of age. Young and old alike can have one. Know the warning signs.
Some helpful resources: National Stroke Association, The American Stroke Association,
Invest a small amount of time learning about it, and it can pay life changing dividends for you and everyone you know. Thank you for reading.
Wallingford Magazine – Summer, 2019

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