Tuesday, August 21, 2012

The Top Five Things I Hate About Strokes

5) They are debilitating.
4) They cause brain damage.
3) They are hereditary.
2) They are sneaky little bastards that come out of nowhere.
1) They seem to have it out for my family.

On Sunday, my uncle Kevin had a stroke.  They got him to the hospital quickly enough to receive alteplase, and he initially responded well to it.  We all went to bed Sunday night feeling pretty confident that he was on the road to recovery.  Monday morning, we learned that not only was the stroke much more severe than originally believed, but he was also one of the lucky 6.4% who experience cerebral hemorrhage as a side-effect of alteplase.  They decided to transfer him to the Mayo clinic in Jacksonville, but due to severe weather, the helicopters were grounded and they had to drive him up by ambulance.

Shortly after calling to fill me in on Uncle Kevin, my mom called me back to tell me that my grandmother was in the ER, exhibiting stroke symptoms.

Yeah.  I was not having a good day.  And to think, My uncle, grandmother, and mother (who is essentially the family backbone) were all having even worse days.  The good news is that my grandmother had only a TIA, or a mini-stroke.  She's already pretty much back to normal, and if she isn't home now, she soon will be.

My uncle's condition seems to have stabilized.  The last that I heard, the bleeding had stopped and they were continuing to monitor his condition closely.  Unless he takes a sharp turn for the worse, a return home and a great deal of rehab will figure in his future.  He has only limited movement on his left side, and he will probably be blind in his left eye, but it's looking like he will survive.  

Thank God.

Update, September 12, 2012:  Gramma is home and back to normal.  Uncle Kevin is stable, and has been moved to a rehab facility in Jacksonville to spend a few weeks trying to regain some of what he lost.  Aunt Linda has had to go back to work, but goes up to visit him when she can.  Thank you all for your prayers and support!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Little Vacuum

Elora loves to vacuum.  Anytime I get mine out, she wants to help me, but the thing is a little unwieldy for her, and she's not exactly thorough anyway.  But, who am I to discourage her, when she wants to help?  So I got her one of her own.  :)

It's actually a pretty neat little vacuum.  It's not very strong, but super lightweight.  The floor attachment and long (black) handle can be removed, turning it into a  little hand vac.  It's perfect for her!  Now, "getting" to vacuum is actually an incentive to clean up all of her toys.  It's crazy.  It's fantastic.  And, since she and her sister tend to make a mess on the floor at meal time (and when they're playing with something like moon dough), it's super handy for her to be able to clean up the mess herself.  She has fun, and feels so proud of herself when she's done.  AND I don't have to do it! Really, it's a win-win for everyone involved.