Guest blogger Carla Langridge is a 76 year old personal trainer who can run rings around her grandchildren. She is still working more actively than most, was an opera singer in her youth and is a force to be reckoned with.
Luckily my voice didn't fail me and I yelled and screamed 'Help' for some minutes. Someone eventually heard me and next stop was Bunbury Regional Hospital.
In the ambulance I willed my arm and leg to work and after about 15 mins I was able to wriggle fingers and toes. The rest of the day was spent in ER undergoing all possible tests.
I was still filled with total disbelief that I had suffered a stroke. I felt humiliated and cheated. Personal trainers, Pilates and Spin instructors don't have strokes. But they do!
The clot , caused by an irregular heartbeat lodged in my brain stem , and that part of the brain controls balance, coordination and posture. How lucky was I.
The exercises given to me are all Pilates based, using core muscles, especially glutes and pelvic floor to lift my left leg. I had to re establish communication between brain and muscles and if you want it enough it will happen. Quads and hammies needed urging and control of my left arm took a little time. The encouragement from the nurses and allied health professionals was exceptional and I can't praise them enough.
All pathways have been cleared, muscle control and strength is restored. I am back at work , not lifting heavy weights or jogging yet. After all it has only been 8 days.
I will not be defined, identified or limited by my stroke. I have taken it as a warning. It has said to me that some events are not preventable and I am not invincible, no one is.
Being lean strong and fit can't trump an irregular heartbeat and being almost 77.
This was event that was going to happen but being in good condition has helped enormously in the rehabilitation.
Recovery that might have taken weeks or months has taken hours literally. Having said that , a visit to the doctor might have picked up early signs and saved me the trouble of having a stroke...
I certainly won't leave it another 5 yrs!