This is a story of a reasonably healthy 44 year old male with no interesting medical history, who suddenly had lots of one. In mid July 2007 Fox Purtill had a Stroke.
What he felt when the Stroke happened was mildly dizzy and then he couldn't move, then he stopped noticing. There were snaps, like scenes from a bad hand-cam carried by a drunk, of seconds of events. No real memories, just vague notes written on soggy napkins on his mind. This went on for several days.
He remembered he loved his fiance. Apparently he remembered that to others before he was aware of it himself, he didn't remember saying several times the past few days. The hospital had tried to prepare his fiance for his death or a come. But something like memory was stirring in his mental soup. A hospital room, a picture on the wall, it had a TV in it - hard to look at anything in the room for more than a few minutes, it was an effort and tired him quickly. He started recognizing his fiance, who stayed with him by his side at all times. Her mom came in from time to time, she was remembered fairly quickly, only took 3 - 4 minutes. He couldn't remember what his birthday was, one plus one is... what's a one? Where was he, he knew this was a hospital room, but it stops there.
Talking was possible, but the mouth didn't work right, but he barely could remember enough to put some basic words in a sentence so the mouth accuracy failure wasn't a main issue. The interesting parts we the ones that didn't work, his right side of his body appeared to have forgotten it was attached to the left side. He could see them, laying there, and no matter what commands he sent them they ignored him.
By the 5th day he could stay awake for more than a hour without needing 3 of sleep. It's the first day he remembers they told him he had a Stroke. He had a blowout in the base of his brain, a 2.3 in. (6 cm.) by 1.5 in. (3 cm.) space had broken and filled up with his precious red fluid. They were nice people at the hospital, tried to explain to his fiance that there didn't seem to be a outstanding reason this had happened and anyone can get them at any age, but older people get it more thanks to age. He was doing well and he has a high blood pressure, dangerously so. All Fox could do is spend a few hours watching TV, and only on the left site since the right eye had joined the rebellion against the left.
It turned out Fox was on vacation with his fiance, and on day one of the holiday is when all this started. The hospital felt Fox would be getting better care closer to home at a major hospital with a Stroke ward. Fox and his fiance were flown by ambulance jet to a big hospital. The people were not as nice, and no TV, Fox would miss the TV. The staff didn't allow Fox's fiance to stay in the room except during visiting hours. They found that Fox had a infection remotely related to his care and it was making his recovery slow down. It was not a fun place. After another week he could be put in a wheelchair, his right side still uncooperative but he had more words, one plus one is two!! Two times two is.. what's times? Ok, not that far along but improvement was there. He could read some words now too.
A month later he was moved to a therapy hospital and that started several changes, within a day he could twitch hi right thumb!! He could remember his birthday 3 out of 4 tries. After 3 weeks he was able to stand and moved to a walker. Another few weeks and he moved on to a crutch. His vision became more focused and his math skills had improved. Words still escape him from time to time but he works around them.
It's been a year and a half since then. I walk with a cane and have to get a full nights sleep (I didn't used to NEED it). I type left-handed but I can open a door with my right and dress myself. My mind is sharp and came back better in some respects. I still can't FEEL my right side (be careful cooking) but doctors are impressed with my recovery considering this. I have blood pressure pills daily, no big deal.
I feel lucky, accomplished, and generally well off. I'm not perfect, but I'm not bad.