Confidence again

It’s been almost exactly a year since my stroke. Following the stroke I found it difficult to string a sentence together, this improved somewhat but then my self confidence went through the floorboards. I don’t know if I’m saying the right things or even making sense. I’m a writer afraid to write, hence my appearance on this forum. I forget common words: I know what I want to say but I can’t get the words I need. It’s like I want to say something and I know what I want to say, but the word I want is not there; just a blank.

Another strange amusing thing that has happened twice now is coloured rectangles floating in the air at my peripheral vision. Like coloured books floating in an arc. They are clear on the right side but somewhat dim on the left. I told the doctor about this one but he doesn’t think there is any danger, in fact he laughed when I said it was entertaining. (I had trouble with the word “laughed” there - no idea how to spell it".)

Something else I should mention is the vertigo or whatever: This started shortly before the stroke, some two or three weeks before I think. This comes and goes on a daily basis, but I never know what day. It’s like being on a ship at sea, a rolling jelly-like sensation in my head and legs. I have trouble walking on uneven surfaces. Anyone from the local council out there?

In addition to the above, I’ve had countless minor symptoms and pain in my back and legs that has now subsided.
I hope that this is a help to others if only to show they are not alone? I have a sneaking suspicion that the medics don’t know much about strokes.


@Chaos thank you for sharing your story. I sometimes have difficulties finding words too although I’m no writer. I usually find myself describing an item when I can’t find the word.
I also get dizzy. Less often than early on but still there. I have vertigo exercises to do which bring on the symptoms. I think the idea is the brain then gets used to them & adjusts.
Hopefully your symptoms will continue to improve & all those words your hunting for will appear.
Best wishes
Ann x

Shwmae @Chaos, I’m a writer too and had damage to the right side of my cerebellum as well as the left, so have had language hurdles to overcome. At first, trouble passing a sentence. With practice I have made improvements. Used to be unable to recognise tense, but have since much improved, still discovering flaws in my writing since stroke. At the beginning, they were infuriating more than anything else but the will to write will win over. :grinning:

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Hello @Chaos. It’s as frustrating as hell trying to use the words I know are there but struggle to find mainly when talking. It’s not just you. Writing is a little easier probably because I feel less pressure and can take time and be more considered and there is no immediate audience. It does knock your confidence but I keep trying. It’s all we can do. All the best, Julia

Hi Mahoney thanks for the support.

Hi Chaos, I too suffered a loss of confidence. I did well when I had speech therapy, but that is over and I really struggle with words now. I cannot really write at all now, it starts minute and degenerates into a squiggle. I now a computer to write now but it takes me ages putting missed words etc. All we can keep done trying and hope for better things, Moira

Hi Moira, The computer keyboard seems to me the ideal answer to your problem. Practice is what that’s all about. Keep on typing and see if you get it right. Let me know.
regards chaos

Thanks for your reply Chaos. I will stick with the computer and save the outcome, that gives me a chance go back and correct it at a later stage. I find that trying to correct at the time does work except with short pieces. Moira

When I have written about anything on this Forum my first efforts are inevitably flawed. Being as perfectionist and self-critical as I am I ease this dissatisfaction with myself by reading, re-reading and correcting what I’ve written. To be honest I am somewhat obsessive in this activity. I not only check and re-check spelling but I change the words I’m using to improve meaning. I also scan and rescan punctuation and layout. This can take some time and is an involving process.

Thinking about this process I conclude that it could well be an avoidance strategy. While I busy myself with all this trivia I am not dwelling on the darker aspects of my condition as one smitten by the stroke. I attempt to avoid the negative and instead struggle towards the positive.

The little orange pencil at the top right of my post is a sign of this behaviour.

best wishes to all who struggle with this

keep on keepin’ on

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Hi Bobbi, It takes me forever to write even a brief message let alone a letter. My husband posted one for me this morning which took a week to write. I write a paragraph, go back the day after to edit it, write another paragraph , go back the next day and edit it, and so until the letter is finished. It’s no good editing the same day, I just read what I think I have written. Sometimes I rewrite the whole paragraph. I think it is just being hyper- aware that maybe you don’t want to any mistakes that cause confusion. Moira

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Thank you all for your replies, they are comforting, although I wouldn’t wish any of it on anyone.

Personally I think that these columns should be available to the medical profession, give than some ideas about what’s really going on. Unlike many I don’t put these people on a pedestal, they are doing a job like the rest of us. In hospital a certain doctor refused to treat me because I made a joke. Are we all supposed to treat illness with solemn seriousness? I must add that the nurses were great.

I realise that critical thinking is taboo these days but I don’t really care.
Regards to all Chaos

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