28th April 2016

Just thought I would say hi. 

It’s been a few days and I did say I would try and write on here more. 

It’s been a good a not too bad few days. 

  • Been to the gym everyday ✔️✔️✔️✔️
  • Done CogMed each morning ✔️✔️❌✔️
  • Leg & arm stretching ✔️❌✔️✔️
  • Hand work ✔️❌❌❌
  • Taking tablets ✔️❌✔️✔️
  • Washing up ✔️❌✔️✔️

These things I had put on a list of tasks I must do everyday.  As you can see I’m not perfect everyday but who is? The worst offender is my hand. I can’t seem to get the communications between hand and brain to work ( and before you people reading this think “obviously you can’t get them to work you had a stroke”! I know that I mean the line of communication that were open see firmly shut right now)!! So that has been quite a struggle for me. Then more they don’t work the more frustrated I get. Which then grows into a tantrum with a bit of self loathing thrown in for good measure. You can’t beat a bit of self loathing and not being able to think of the words to insult yourself with!! 

I’m going to see the physiologist tomorrow. Angus is his name. I don’t know what will go on. I’ve been waiting since end of last year. Is it weird that I’m looking forward to it???

Anyway I need some sleep now.

Laters 💋 

Monday 25th April 2016

Well what a week it was last week. Body in idle mode. Trying to process everything. Putting everything into the reality folders and then putting into storage. I think most of it all is filed now. Maybe a few sheets that need holes punched in and then they will be filed.

I woke this morning and decided I needed to put down tasks that I have to do everyday with out fail. Regardless of my mental state. I need to put some kind structure to my day. It’s too easy for my brain to play the tired card. Don’t get me wrong I do get tired and I must rest at those times, but not everyday. 

I returned to the gym today too. It felt good to be back there. Spoke to James about last week and how I hope to get together with him and Marion my Danesbury physio soon so we can create a bigger plan of rehab. 

Sarah (Headway) came round for a catch up. Threw a few ideas around maybe looking at some volunteery work. All in all a good day.  

What a crazy weekend!!

My sister Emma, husband Andrew, nephew Nathan (15) and niece Maddie (6) all came to stay for the weekend.  Asbo is still recovering!! 

Sat lunchtime we all went over to Watford crem to place some flowers in Bluebell wood for Nanny Radlett’s birthday. She would have been 93. We met aunty Jayne (dad’s sister) there. It was lovely to see her and have a catch up as the last I saw her was just before I left Danesbury last August. 

Back home again and we went over to Rye Park and played crazy golf. Well it certainly was crazy. Playing one handed and keeping my balance was challenge all in itself, but it was funny. We returned home and ordered pizza and had another YouTube jukebox night. Everyone joined in even the children. We then had a stint of just dance for Maddie before she had to go to bed and then it was back to YouTube jukebox.

Sunday we had a chill out day. Watched some films, the MotoGP which Rossi won (wooohoooo). They all left around 3pm and then I watched Watford get beaten by crystal palace in the F.A Cup semifinals (boooooooo). 

Laters 💋

St Georges Day 

First of all happy St. George’s everyone and also HaPpY 93rd BiRtHdAy to my Nan . I miss and love you so much xxxx

Sorry folks that I haven’t written anything for a while. My head has been on vacation. I’ve been in brain fatigue central. It’s kind of boring there. No energy to do anything……….no motivation and it sucks!! You forget that after suffering a TBI that this happens to you until you come out the other side or until you piece everything together. Sometimes it’s not until you speak to someone like your physio or like I did Jeanette my OT that you realise. I process things so differently at the moment. Once there is events that happen my brain shuts its doors and drip feeds me the information over a number of days (I wonder if it’s paying my back for the drips I was on in hospital)?

This is what happened…….

Monday 18/04 we went back to Addenbrookes to take part in a focus group about my time in NCCU (neurological critical care unit). There was 5 patients and their partners (including myself and Deb). There was 2 doctors, a senior sister called Ingred, 2 admin people 1 was called Kate and a another lady. I recognised the senior sister but not the two doctors. 

The doctors started it all off and one said how he couldn’t remember any of our faces as they see so many people they all seem to blur into one. He explained why they have these focus groups and some things that have changed through the input from patients and family. We then took it in turn to say a bit about ourselves and what happened etc.

 I think it helped Deb to be with other people who had gone through a very similar situation to her. People who knew the pain, dispair, anxiety, fear and stress that she was dealing with. One gentleman even gave Deb his card so that of she just wanted to chat about it all to someone who understands then to give him a call. That was a lovely gesture we thought. 

I then said that I would like of apologise to all the staff in critical & Intensive care as apparently I had quite a potty mouth while a was in there because I was in so much pain. Straight away one of the doctors said that he remembered me. Wow!! I must of been bad!! When we had a little break I turned round to Ingred and said how she looked familiar to me and she explained that she did treat me when I was back in intensive care but not when I was in critical care. 

After it was all finished Ingred took some of us back into critical care. It was strange being back there. One bed was empty while we were in there and it was the room that I was in. So I got to look in and see the framework that all things that were attached to me would’ve been attached to. That was really scary to think about. I just burst into tears. Deb gave me a massive hug and had a few tears herself. 

From there we brought some sweeties and then went back to ward a was on and caught up with a couple of the nurses. It’s nice to go back and see them to show them the progress that I am making. To show then that the job that they do counts so much.

The day completely knackered me.  My brain has spent the week trying to process it all. The reality of it all. Seeing where I was fighting for my life. Scary stuff that needed processing and the realisation of how much of a work in progress my brain still is. As my brain has so much information to process needless to say my physical recovery got thrown to the back of the que. No matter how much I fought myself it wasn’t happening. That got me down……….but Monday is a new week, I’ve processed my trip to Addenbrookes so time to start planning my week.

Laters 💋

We joined the gym

On the 31st March myself & Deb joined the local leisure centre. Time to for the next step in my journey to able bodyness. 

APRIL 2016

Monday 4th it was induction time!!  I’m only looking to go to use the recumbent bike and maybe the running machine…….not to run obviously, I’m not in that league of ability right now. To be fair bambi on ice would have grace than me right now. 

Tuesday 5th here we go!! Time to go to the gym. All by myself. Had to stand in front of the mirror, pull on my big girl joggers and t-shirt, then give myself a pet talk. Let’s do this!! I don’t have the nervousness like Claire 1.0 had going into the gym by myself. I think now it’s because I know that people are going to stare. I can’t stop them. It’s part of human nature that as a species we are very good at. Tried to sit on the recombrent bike but my foot wasn’t having any of it. I think today was the first time in all of this that my head going “yeah let’s do this”! and it was my leg (knee & ankle) that was going “no no nooooooooo…….not going to happen”!! My blood started to boil then one of the gym instructors Chelsa came over to help. Chelsea was really helpful and suggested I try an actual exercise bike. With a bit of adjustment here and there we got me set up and sorted. Even my leg was like “oooooooooo ok……..ok I like it this is good”. Body in harmony let’s pedal. I did was myself in the mirror constantly to make sure that I kept control of my hip. Which then kept better control of my knee. Which then help my ankle and finally a small amount of control in my foot.  I was talking Chelsea, explains my history and she suggested that I book a appointment with James as he deals with all the go referrals so he would be the best person to suggest things I could do. So on my way out I did and it got booked for following day.

Wednesday 6th here we go a date with James!! Got in the gym and was greeted by him. He’s a really bubbly funny guy, he makes you feel at ease straight away. We discussed what my disabilities are, and what we need to do. Also we discussed the hard programme that I will be doing to get me in shape for the RioOlympics this summer 😆🏆.  So I have the exercise bike while holding a 1kg dumbbell in my right hand, adding in some biceps curls if I can but the main focus is peddling. It’s quite entertaining as if I attempt a bicep curl I forget to peddle!! This is going to be fun. Next a bit of step aerobics…….not really but we use the step at least. I step my left foot onto the step then lift my right knee up as high as I can 10 and then change legs. Then it’s onto seated back rowing machine. It’s for arms and posture so brilliant for me as they are two big areas for me. And this time as it’s not a case of using a machine like you would normally I do individual arms on this one. This is so I can do a stronger weight on my left arm so that I do not lose the strength I have in it. This task takes a lot of brain power as I have to tell myself that I can do this one as I can’t rely on my left arm to do the work is down to my right arm to do this one.  There is another machine but I can’t remember the name or think of a description to put into Google to find out what it is but I will take note at the gym and then put it on here. Again with this one I do different weight sizes for my left and right arms. Once I have done these exercises and frazzled myself out it is then back to the bike for another pedal and like a cool down. I felt totally totally phyiced when I when I finished and James has put me on a strict goal of doing these exercises for the next two weeks and two weeks only otherwise he’s going to beat me then they gonna look at things again and maybe add something more into the mix. I was buzzing leaving there.

Thursday 7th I am ****ed!!! I’ve not worked as hard as I did yesterday in a long while. Feel good but I know I need to listen to my body and rest. I’m not at they level where even though I’m tired or things ache a little I carry on. I have to let my body process and store the new information before I carry on otherwise it will throw a shit fit and not do anything. I feel gutted that I’m not at the gym but ickle steps Claire ickle steps.

Friday 8th ok here we go to the gym again. Got some tunes to listen to on my phone to keep me pumped. Its harder to do I feel when your by yourself and don’t have someone there to push you.  It was good though I followed the programme. Pushed myself because like James said “if you’re not going to push yourself hard then there’s no point doing it”. I totally agree with that. Felt good when I had finished and also felt proud of myself that I have really stuck to this this week. I thought after we joined I start would start off being like “yeah yeah I’ll go” and not actually go but I love this feeling I am totally buzzing when I finish and feel so proud of myself. It’s really hard to explain but for me it has a massive feelgood factor. I was speaking to Deb tonight and decided that at some point I will have some personal training sessions with James because he’s bloody good and I need that kind of person that will laugh and joke with you but still push you.

Sunday 10th it’s my birthday weekend. Deb brought tickets for us to see Circa perform Closer at The Udderbelly Festival on the south bank. http://www.udderbelly.co.uk/whats-on/closer It’s was absolutely spectacular. The strength, balance, skill of these people, of these acrobats from Australia is incredible!!! Balancing off each other and off things. At one point Jarred one of the male performers had the three girls Lisa, Lauren and Kimberly all balanced on him with him standing. And not like he looked like Superman or had a wash board stomach and amazing abs etc he just had amazing strength. One of the performers Lauren is a rope contortionist, she was hanging about in the air it was crazy. Another performa Lisa had all this amazing skill with hulahoop’s just started off with one and by the end she must’ve had at least 40 around her!! Kimberly and Daniel done some amazing aerial acrobatics together. I just I can’t explain it honestly go and see it it is brilliant!! And as an added bonus as we left because we had to come through the step free access way because I’m special (I’m not being disrespectful to anyone when I say that one it’s how I deal with it) we left via backstage. As we did of the performers Lauren was then walking past so we had a little chat with her and and said thank you for such an amazing performance to see. 

Laters 💋