A STROKE OF LUCK (6 Chapters)

A weak spot . . .

1 ̶ The Incident

I am now officially a senior.

I knew I was getting older, but in my mind, I was never there yet.

Until recently, I could read a blue streak, write a decent paragraph, solve a mess of cryptograms without cheating, rake up a yardful of dead leaves, and power-walk three kilometres in my bare feet on sharp stones. (Okay, there’s one little white lie in there.) Several weeks ago, that all changed. They have yanked my driver’s licence.   I have to bum rides. Now I’m a senior.

What happened?

I’ll tell you what happened. I never saw it coming. I had a stroke.

On Wednesday, April 26, after Olga and I finished supper, I retired upstairs to watch tv. I often left Olga alone, sometimes for hours, as I worked on the computer or watched a program. All of a sudden I felt different. I couldn’t adjust the set. It was too much of an effort. When I got up, I found I couldn’t walk properly. I couldn;t speak. Over the course of an hour and a half, I fell several times as my legs failed to support me. I managed to climb to the third storey with intention of turning off my computer, but I couldn’t find the switch. My right arm lost all feeling; it became detached from my trunk. I couldn’t find my right arm. I left the computer and the lights on as I collapsed down one flight of stairs. My legs wouldn’t work; I couldn’t grasp the handrail because I had lost the one arm.

Somehow, I still don’t know how, I switched off most lights. Feeling returned to my right arm. I edged down one more set of stairs. It felt too far to trudge to the living room to let Olga know I had problem ̶ not that I could speak anyway. I ducked into the bedroom.

I stripped down to the flesh. I had to clean up. Somewhere en route I had voided my bowels. I sponged myself off, tucked the dirty laundry in the washer. I slept very well.

Next morning, I felt pretty normal, but Olga sensed something was wrong. There were evidences of my accidental discharges.   I could speak but I couldn’t articulate what had happened to me. All day we weathered ice-storm conditions, so even if I felt like frolicking, I couldn’t. We rarely have visitors, for we live in the country. My memory of that day is hazy, but I must have read and watched tv.

Next day, Friday, Olga was getting really worried about me. I myself knew that something extraordinary had occurred. She suggested I go to the Emergency. I didn’t think it wise to drive myself, 30 minutes away, and Olga no longer drives. Finally I found words to describe my condition. I had been trying for a day and a half to find the words. I blurted them out: “Heart attack!”, I said.  The wrong words, as it turned out.

I couldn’t find the word “stroke” in my vocabulary. I called our son, Rob, who had finished his work week. He lives three hours away. He had some errands to run but he came as quickly as he could. I took along an overnight bag and my meds.

The weather was still miserable.

Some journeys take forever . . .

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About EJ Lavoie

Writer and independent publisher with website www.WhiskyJackPublishing.ca
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6 Responses to A STROKE OF LUCK (6 Chapters)

  1. Pat Gaffney says:

    Sorry to hear about your problem best wishes for a fast and complete recovery . A stroke is a possibility at any time being a long haul driver and alone most of the time I make sure I always have aspirin at hand just in case. Along with my cell phone at least most companies have satellite communication in the trucks as well. Again best wishes and prayers.

  2. Johan and Susan (Kilborn) Banman says:

    We pray and hope you aren’t making a full recovery

  3. Johan and Susan (Kilborn) Banman says:

    That is not what I meant! You are making making a full recovery…I should read before I post!

  4. Doug Carlson says:

    Warmest regards my history friend.

    Get well

  5. Rudy and Gloria Bies says:

    Thank you Edgar. It is a real warning to all of us. I hope that your health improves to your normal self.
    Gloria and I have taken on an extraordinary challenge this summer.
    It involves publishing my first book which has been 40 years in the making. We have been working seven days a week now for the past two months. We realize that at our age we all need to slow down. We wonder now where the summer went ?
    Best wishes to you
    Rudy and Gloria Bies

  6. Charlie W says:

    Fascinating account, Edgar… But o can’t find the crest of it after about 500 words…

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