Archives for the Month of September, 2014

Bureaucracy

Books / Wellcome Images

Books / Wellcome Images

Right after my stroke, the health care bureaucracy was exhausting. You have to stay on top of it, or more letters will arrive. I don’t know how sick patients with no family support handle this bureaucracy. Now imagine having cognitive damage. One speech therapist I know, who makes house calls, says bills just pile up in some of the homes she visits.

Do you have bureaucracy stories to tell?

Positive

Positive / Library of Congress

Positive / Library of Congress

Do you plan to get everything you have lost back? Limbs? Speech? Your life? Are you positive?

Flaw

Flip / Wellcome Images

Flip / Wellcome Images

I saw a very fit man on the subway recently, but what I stared at was his flaw. On his cheek was a large smooth birthmark, maybe 2 inches long. I couldn’t stop staring.

I wondered if other kids had teased him young. I wondered if people made fun of him now. I wondered if he thought about his birthmark at all. I realize that my way of thinking had changed fundamentally.

We all have flaws. It’s simply that most can hide them more easily than this beautiful man. And me.

Do you have visible flaws?

Contemplate

Contemplate / Library of Congress

Contemplate / Library of Congress

Recently someone asked me if my personality had changed since my stroke. If so, did I like the new version of me. Better? Worse?

My personality has definitely changed a bit. Do I like it better? Still contemplating.

Have you been changed?

Skinny

Skinny / Wellcome Images

Skinny / Wellcome Images

At the hospital I lost about 20 pounds in a month. The hospital food didn’t help. I gained some of it back afterward but was still skinny. I was just not very hungry.

Did a hospital stay leave you skinny? Plump?

Visitors

Visitors / Wellcome Images

Visitors / Wellcome Images

At the hospital, I was friendly. When a visitor asked me what she could do for me, I told her to go out on the town, have a good time and report back.

My mother said I was more polite in the hospital than out.

At a hospital, are you friendly? Ornery?