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10/2/2016 Latest post:
12 hours ago
Welcome to our CaringBridge website. We are using it to keep family and friends updated in one place. We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement. Thank you for visiting.
On Wednesday morning, September 28th, Rick got up, poured a cup of coffee, then headed into his office at home as usual. After a bit he started talking to me, but what he was saying made no sense. Shortly after that he came back into the kitchen and started saying the same thing - there were words between long pauses - but the words again made no sense. I told him I was really concerned now and I had him do the things I could remember if you suspect someone is having a stroke. He could count to 10, he could raise his arms, his tongue looked fine and he knew me. I then asked him if he knew who was visiting with us. He got the last name, but could not remember first names, so I said "We need to go to the hospital" and he agreed.
Once at the hospital they determined he had had a stroke and it was affecting his speech. The also found that one of his carotid arteries was totally blocked and one was partially blocked. The next day they said he'd also had a small heart attack.
He got to come home on Friday, the 30th, with instructions to take it easy. "Take it easy" is like a foreign language to Rick, as some of you know that have gone on vacation with him! :) Needless to say, he's not too good at doing "take it easy". But, he was advised no driving, no mowing the lawn, no climbing on the roof, no climbing ladders and trimming trees with a chain saw, etc. etc. !! They want him to read (he can read perfectly!) and to also read out loud, to practice naming anything and everything, and to have therapy.
He will be starting speech therapy 2-3 days a week along with having one to three procedures after 2-4 weeks to determine if a stent or surgery on the carotids would be advisable and to look into the possible damage/clogged arteries in the heart. The doctors all said that he is in really good shape and that he WILL get better, and it will take time. There are so many folks that are so kind and want to stay updated, and Caring Bridge was the obvious choice to use for communicating with a large number of people.
He looks good, says he feel fine, he just has trouble when he starts thinking about what he wants to say. Spontaneous phrases come easily - other stuff, not so much. He was lucky the stroke only affected his speech, and, we ARE confident, he WILL get better!!