So, we got a little work to do here catching up on Tax Day and Thursday. Seems the day has started off with a daily ritual. For those of you that know me music so big part of my day and actually I’m trying to wear a rock ‘n’ roll or artist T-shirt each day. I’ve been accumulating them over the last couple years. The lockdown is a perfect time to be inspire each day. It’s like being a teenager every day proud of the shirt you got from the concert the day before. I also have Alexa play for me, “Turn the Page” by Bob Seger. It is the live version from early 1970s at Cobo Hall in Detroit. That was a favorite of mine, when I bowled on tour, it was about the road and the routine day in and day out. I followed that up with Start Me Up” by The Rolling Stones. A very vivid memory of a 1981 concert at the Richfield Colosseum. Debbie had us seated in the Cole National loge. And this song had everybody on the floor on their feet, jumping up and down and singing. I can see it like it was yesterday. Great rock ‘n’ roll memories. Enjoy the update. This post has been edited, but I left the last paragraph intact. It shares with family, friends and co-workers, that I was going to be blogging about the stroke, and I shared the website. The food pictures are for the foodies, that have checked in. no descriptions, just some plates of food we have devoured in the last week. (Tried to add more, but I'm a Blogger Rookie) Stay hungry my friends! Wednesday ended up being probably the best day I’ve had since returning home from the hospital. I did my exercises alone or with Debbie. Got into a very good rhythm for the day, watched very little TV and spoke to a number of customers. We set up some lunches for them and their staffs. Also had a 10 to 11 o’clock conference call with our team which proved to be very enlightening.
Back to rehab and juggling title issues. While trying to do a little bit of exercise a little bit of nutrition and work. I’ve actually found that I don’t need a lot to eat. A few snacks, actually nutritious hold me over pretty well. And I have gotten back on an espresso in the morning. It reminds me of Italy. So, a little bit of rehab. We have set up a dining room chair with some towels around the arms in a plastic wrap over them so it’s comfortable for my hands. The two exercises that are done at the chair are push-ups which benefit the triceps. The other is a complete stand and then sit down, which is good for coordination strengthening the legs and the core. I can actually do 15 of each fairly easily. The key is to do them slow both up-and-down with the correct breathing. Thank you, Linda. I told her what my friend John Clark taught me and many of his seminar attendees. “Practice does not make perfect, perfect practice makes perfect.” I also told Linda, if she uses it three times, it is hers!
If you don’t do yoga or any type of breathing exercise, I would incorporate it into your daily life. It’s helped me enormously through this event. Deep breathing is free, open air passages cost nothing and once you learn to breathe you will enter a state of calmness and as I am finding out from the stroke a state of renewal.
When I do the push-ups and the stands from the dining room seat, I am staring at a €20 oil painting the front of mine brought back and one of their trips to Italy. It is matted and framed and that cost five times the amount of the street vendors price. It hangs on the short wall in the dining room and it is my focal point for exercises done in the dining room chair. The row of wine vineyards I have seen many times. Not the exact place, but it takes me back to Tuscany and Piedmont, The Amarone region as well as Napa and Sonoma valleys in California.
I had another realization as I start a new chapter in my life. I gave him Bob Law, A business and sales consultant said in the early 1990s to a group, “Fake it, till you make it “. I’ve been doing it for 30 years. Just got me into a lot of positions in a lot of successes. People say that I have a great attitude and that I’m going to make it through this, and I probably will. But I’m faking it with the best of them. I have no experience with the stroke, numbness in my hands face and leg. I am doing the exercises and enjoying a few of them, while seeing some progress. It is very hard to except a long road three months to 18 months. Who knows it could be longer?
I am filling up the days with necessities, so hopefully make this easier. And I’ve started to cook again. Yesterday together we made a nice platter of salmon, fruit, a little bit of cheese and some wine. The frittata that I made on Saturday was so delicious we had one for dinner last night. This time I excluded the flour, fatty meats and cheese. But it was delicious, and I never had dessert last night. Probably a good thing.
Thursday, we have two therapists show up. At 10 o’clock physical therapy one-hour ass kicking 15 rep exercises. And that is a very good physical therapist. She is no nonsense. I will probably talk about her from time to time. But I was determined to do everything she wanted yesterday with very little conversation and/or humor. I exceeded her expectations. I think I see Debbie’s expectations. I did everything she needed and then some. I paid for it the rest of the day. I should have taken a Tylenol shortly after that visit. Never realized until that evening. Well I’m living and learning. Her exercises take us from the dining room, to the kitchen and then to the family room sofa. I want to tell you that I DON’T like any particular part the best. Not really an exercise guy. But they are beneficial. I think of the future I’m going to try and incorporate a little bit of music. I may possibly put a little video up with this on a blog of me doing something from her routine. But as a very positive note, the exercises are good!
At 1 o’clock Jesse showed up. This big ole' boy from Georgia, with his southern accent and the gentle calm expertise "I’ll show you" how-to pick-up pennies or prick your finger with a paper clip or put clothespins on a coffee cup, sort of makes him a more surreal character. He has jokes and he takes a joke. We sit there for 45 minutes and I get many things done. Jesse has taught me to do a few John Travolta moves, it will help my triceps, biceps and shoulders. Also, he’s got me grabbing into a large Tupperware of dried macaroni and another of dried rice. The moral of that story is to pick up plastic, metal and rubber items that Debbie has buried in them. This would be an excellent exercise for grade school children. They very frustrating exercise for a stroke victim. Whether it’s a coin or a paper clip or something out of the Knick knack drawer in the kitchen, it is extremely difficult to figure out what’s in your hand. And let me say this is my left hand I’m working with which is not my dominant hand. And my left hand is more asleep than awake. But I can feel it strengthening my left hand, and we are working to make it alive once again. Seriously, it is a pain in the ass, but, its my journey, so giddyap!!!
I’ll share more stories about Linda and Jesse in the future. But let’s wrap this thing up, if you haven’t watched the weather Cleveland Ohio was covered in snow yesterday morning. And today Friday the 17th we are expecting three or 4 inches starting at about 8 AM through 2:30 or 3 o’clock this afternoon. We have cranked up the heat in our home, but my left foot and my left hand are cold. One more quick Jesse story talking about hot and cold. He fills up two containers-a gallon and a half each. One with hot water approximately 100° the other with ice cubes and water at approximately 32° freezing. And I set my timer and with a washcloth or sponge or both I dig in the water. 2 to 3 minutes on the hot water side and a minute on the cold side and back-and-forth. I did that a few times yesterday. I time it from approximately 9 to 15 minutes. Alternating from one container to the other. While standing on my feet, it confuses my hand between hot and cold. Which helps with the temperature outside. I believe this exercise has helped me get a little bit of feeling back in my left hand. Jesse said we’re just trying to wake up some nerves that have gone to sleep. And my brain is not really telling them it’s time to get up. So, we are doing it the Italian Way, we are persuading them!
Last item, greeting cards, flowers, fruit and other food has been delivered to our home each day. We are grateful and have enjoyed everything. From the fragrance of the flowers, the cool sweet taste of the fruit and samplings of the food, both cooked and specialty items. Some are not on my diet, but I have tasted them all this week. On Tuesday we opened a bottle of wine and I’ve had a nice glass each evening. Sort of a celebration of putting the stroke behind me and re-energizing for what’s to follow.
Thank you for following. And when this goes live on www.johnvoso.com you’re going to be able to interact with comments and questions. And I think as I get back in the life, the topics will vary. I would hope that you would share the link with family and friends, and I would also like to hear from any stroke survivors to share their ideas on the site.