Archives for the ‘Brain Deep’ Category

Cars

Cars / Library of Congress

Cars / Library of Congress


My older son has been contemplating his relationship with the new little brother. “You will be like a teacher,” I said, “teaching him things he doesn’t know.”

“Could I teach him about cars?”

“Of course.”

Pause.

“Even Camaros?”

Expecting

Expecting / Library of Congress

Expecting / Library of Congress

When I was expecting #2, my older son adjusted to the idea.

He has a 2-year-old and Boston accent. He pointed to my big belly and said, “It’s a brodah in deah!”

Translation: “It’s a brother in there!”

StrokeMama

Baby / Library of Congress

Baby / Library of Congress

I’m a StrokeMama again. Baby boy #2. Healthy and loud. Parents need sleep.

Radio II

Radio / Library of Congress

Radio / Library of Congress

Radio New Zealand asked me to do an interview about strokes and being a StrokeMama. They read this blog! Listen here

Freedom

GRIT Freedom Chair

GRIT Freedom Chair

At the Boston Museum of Science, there is an exhibit on the Freedom Chair. It is the mountain bike equivalent for wheelchairs! Created by a MIT class, it enables users to get off road. Owners use poles instead of spinning wheels with their hands. It’s also useful for rural communities where roads are not paved.

Other cool innovations for the disabled?

Radio

Radio / Library of Congress

Radio / Library of Congress

I’m on the radio! On the National Public Radio show “Here and Now.” They wanted me to talk about being a StrokeMama. Also what it’s like when your mind disappears. Listen here

Park

Park / Wellcome Images

Park / Wellcome Images

My son’s favorite nearby park is the Dragon Park. That is his name for it. It is hilly, sandy, not level and filled with park equipment that a StrokeMama can’t climb to rescue her 2-year-old when he gets stuck.

My son’s second favorite park he calls the Truck Park. It is flat, smaller and filled with toy vehicles.

He is often mad that we are not going to the Dragon Park. Truck Park compromise.

Other stroke compromises?

Music

Alabama / Library of Congress

Alabama / Library of Congress

My 2-year-old son enjoys his musical instruments – a ukulele, a harmonica, a triangle, a xylophone. (We have avoided buying a drum.) He likes belting out bluegrass tunes on his ukulele. Sometimes he hands it to me, whose right hand can play but not with his gusto. Then he looks annoyed.

Have you had moments when your kids notice your disability?

Librarian

Library / Library of Congress

Library / Library of Congress

A librarian wrote in with a speech therapy question: he has a patron who has pretty strong aphasia, or loss of language. The patron likes movies, so the library staff try to help him select them.

“Do you know is there a list of vocabulary that staff can use to aid him? For example, he will say ‘world, 1, 2, 3, 4, you know, come on! Me!’ We try to clarify by asking, ‘scifi? Documentary? Series? South America?’ Many times he gets frustrated and leaves. And help that you can offer or resources that you can point me to would be very appreciated.”

When I had aphasia, I often wrote things down. I don’t know if that is an option for this library patron. Maybe some crowd sourcing here? Any patients or speech therapists with helpful ideas?

Bullhorn

Evelyn / New York Public Library

Evelyn / New York Public Library


Harvard Medical School asked me to speak on the first day of their Neurology course. My hope is that the students take away: be encouraging to stroke patients! We can continue to get better for years! I have had run-ins with therapists and doctors who have not been encouraging. I’m busy proving them wrong.

Got stories to tell?