The Beginning

Welcome to my first blog. The start of a shared adventure, not just into my writing style but into this amazing thing we call life. I have always wanted to start writing but never had the time or confidence to have a go. I am writing this first instalment whilst I’m sitting waiting in the Stroke Clinic, taking the average age down by 40 years, and receiving those looks of are you in the right place? And then the realisation that I could be and then the whole explanation to my fellow patients. It is however a great place to start.

12 weeks ago, I suffered a left sided frontal ischaemic stroke, or a small clot blocked off a distant artery of the left side of my brain and there was no blood supply. I suffered a brain attack. I can not decide which was worse; the inability to use the right side of my body or the total loss of language. It’s one of those decisions that actually takes seconds. Language is the most important skill we have, it defines us as humans, the ability to communicate. We don’t have to walk to be an individual. However interacting with the world around you, the people you love, explaining what is happening or even saying yes or no (and meaning it).

The feeling of total uselessness, I couldn’t explain to the paramedic what was going on, or what my past medical history was, I couldn’t put myself in the world. I was an observer to my entire stroke. On the outside looking in. I knew what was happening. Too much knowledge, and immediately that was it for me. I was on a knife edge. Teetering on the edge of oblivion. One way no more me, the other a battle to find me again. Another one of those ‘no brainers’… quite apt for the moment. I wanted to live and I wanted to be me. Those thoughts were rattling through my brain as I was trying to process what was going on. Trying to see if I was improving. Trying not to panic as there was no point … I could not express myself. I was on the biggest adventure of my life … the start of my next set of adventures.

It was like my brain switched the ‘master O N O F F switch’ and rebooted. I had been my own IT guru. I had 2 options sink or swim and not to mix my metaphors I wanted to swim. So here I am now having finished my first post. 2017 is going to be a good year.

10 thoughts on “The Beginning

  1. Hi Tom, I heard about your stroke a few weeks ago and I can tell you it was a real shock, I am relieved and grateful that you are recovering well. My dad had a stroke a year ago, out of nowhere and left him with real difficulty to communicate and use his right side. Luckily his wife realised what was happening and called 999 immediately, apparently they were there within 10mins and off again within 2, amazing amazing people. A tough road for him in the months to follow but he now has much of his speech back and can use 70ish % of his right side, and improving. He is back and looking after himself a bit better now too!

    Anyway, apologies for high jacking your blog.
    So pleased that things are on the up and looking forward to reading your blog entries in the coming year.
    All the best Tom,
    (Haz says hi too!)

    Liked by 2 people

  2. hi Tom – the start of everything is Deciding to Try – something I heard at the Florence Nightingale Conference this week from a young speaker – Catrin Pugh – an amazing woman, She survived 90% burns in a coach accident returning from a ski resort at the end of the season. A survivor and just an amazing testament to grit and determination.

    I met her mother as well who was just bursting with pride in her daughter’s achievement – so much love.

    I will be looking out for your blogs & posts – best wishes, Maria

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi Tom So Sorry To Read About your Stroke What a Wonderful Way To Express Yourself in Writing a Blog We Are Looking forward to reading all about your upcoming Adventures All the best kind regards Gail & Les

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi Tom, whilst ploughing through endless research I have somehow stumbled upon your blog. I for once am speechless, which you know happens very infrequently to me! I Just wanted to say how sorry we are to hear of your stroke and how much we all miss you. Your blog is fantastic and will be such an inspiration to others! Stay strong and dig deep, you’ve got this!! If ever we can do anything to return all you did for us, you only have to shout! I thought you would like to know I got my first job offer recently. Thank you for inspiring me and making me believe. Wishing you the very best for the future. Jen, Nick and family x

    Liked by 1 person

  5. so glad you visited my blog, Tom – especially as it’s led me to your site – a place of hope and determination – love it – need it to rub off on everyone 🙂


    1. Thank you so much for your comment. I am really enjoying writing it and now I’m exploring more and reading other blogs. It’s a great community and I feel like a sponge absorbing as much advice as possible.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Hi Tom! Remember me from nsg/NSB days?! I’ve just been online researching something for work and your blog came up in the search engine. I’m sorry to hear about your stroke but so glad to hear you are embracing everything and moving forward. How is your mum? She was always my favourite teacher! Gemma Kingston


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