Looking for advice or comments

Hi. I am a 51 year woman. I had a stroke last October then 2 weeks later had another stroke. Everyone keeps telling me that I have been lucky to get off so lightly. I didn’t really have any facial droop, I still have more or less full use of my arms and legs, my speech is ok, so I suppose I really have been lucky! My problem really is I now suffer panic attacks and my brain seems really slow and I have lost a bit of hearing in my left ear and now need a hearing aid. Things that I used to do without thinking takes me what seems an eternity to do and I get really frustrated and angry with myself. It also seems that every week I find something that I am no longer able to do. I have been told that my brain will eventually rewire itself and it will once again become second nature to me. My problem is it’s not coming quick enough for me and I tire so quickly. I really don’t know what I am looking to get out of posting on this forum but I need answers but I’m not sure what the questions are if that makes sense! Any comments and advice would be appreciated.

Christine, All strokes are serious, the fact is that you are fortunate not to have face droop and have had no real problems with talking and walking is to your advantage but the tiredness, slow thinking and panic attacks are standard stroke effects. I have just completed four years, panic attacks are a lot less but my slow thinking has still to be considered when making decisions. Crosswords I used to knock off before breakfast are now often unfinished and my tiredness is under control but still there non-the-less.

You can expect some improvment to happen but the best solution is to work at solving the shortcomings yourself and tolerate those that don't get better. At the same time I must add that there is nothing you  can do about your deafness! Mine happened to my right ear and I am a musician.

I find that one of the few consolations I have is to recognise that most people don't survive a stroke at all and many that do have are in a far worse state than I, so I consider myself fortunate to some degree.

I'm not sure this letter is exactly what you need to encourage you to take heart, but it is the best I can do!


Hi Christine - welcome to the forum.  You will find lots of support, advice and encouragement here, there will always be someone who understands exactly what you are experiencing because they have been there themselves. You are still at a very early stage in your stroke recovery, and you will need to respond to your body's requests for resting as this will pay dividends in the longer term.  From reading posts on this site, feelings of anxiety, panic and frustration seem to be features of stroke recovery - naturally there is the concern that another stroke may occur, but I think that this lessens over time.  My husband suffered a stroke in August 2017 and the early months were very challenging for him, and even now he still has some dark days, but he has continued to run his own business, drive the car (including abroad), manage all his personal hygiene needs, go for walks, do the shopping etc He decided fairly early on that he couldn't manage to work on his cognitive recovery and his physical recovery.  He needed to be back at work, so his cognitive recovery took priority.  When he first went back to work he only managed a 2 hours a day, and maybe an email would take a hour to compose, and then spent the remainder of the day resting.  Now he can manage longer days than me (he's office based).  He has recently started to help with chores such as collecting logs for the wood burner, and using the wheelbarrow to move and stack the logs.  

So ... you may need to think about prioritising your needs.  If you need to return to work, you need an understanding boss, and good support particularly in the early days.  Try to keep a short daily diary of things you have achieved, this has been a really useful source of information for many stroke survivors as sometimes progress is slow.  Give your brain time to heal, don't rush it as you will just hit the wall and may then be fatigued for a couple of days.  There is an interesting piece of writing called "Letter from your brain", try googling this as there may be something in there that will help you.  

Please keep posting, and try to read other posts from people with similar stories, it will help you to put things in perspective, give you hope and encouragement, and you will not feel so alone.  Stay strong, you will make progress and you will be able to look back to this time and see how far you have come.  Best wishes, Nic  

Please be assured that panic attacks, slowness of thoughts, and hearing issues are all very common for us stroke survivors.

I try to look at what I can do and not what I cant do.

Wow, two strokes, thats very bad luck. But just like the rest of us here, you have been chosen to live when many pass away. We are chosen and we are special.

Recovery is terribly slow. We have to look at years and months and not days and weeks. I too lost hearing in the left ear. The stroke that got me was right side lacunar.

Please be positive and please smile at least four times each day. False, forced and fake smiles will do.

You are not alone. Lots of us are here with you


Hi Christine. My friends have already given you excellent advice. I can empathise with you entirely. My stroke was three years ago and over the first two years not only was progress slow but I had to have two cataract operations and two hearing aids. Daily tasks took forever and still take a long time. Fatigue hit me early on and still does, always mid morning for some reason. I then rest for an hour.

You will improve and you will manage. We adapt amazingly. I found ways of putting an ironing board up, cope with cooking and baking and can still clean a loo. Breaking down all tasks into stages helps, as does resting between each stage. Go to exercise classes and relaxation classes too and take joy in every day. Finally, swear whenever you want to. It releases your frustrations and, after that, laugh! Welcome to the forum....or should I say, the mad house?

Hi Nic. Thanks for replying. I'd like to ask you a question if you don't mind. I think my husband is struggling to come to terms with this stroke more than I am. I used to do everything for my husband and son, cooking, cleaning, washing, ironing, driving etc. I am not able to do most of these tasks, still not able to drive. I feel sometimes that my husband thinks I can still do all the stuff I was able to do before. I don't really have the signs of having had a  stroke, speech is normal although I quite often get my sentences back to front. Were you like this after your husbands stroke?


Hello Christine,

The panic attacks /anxiety, thinking that appears to be slow / not being able to think straight  together with the hearing issue are all the result of the stroke you had and  I know they are all hard to come to terms with because this was exactly how I was. I had a lacunar infarct in February 2018 and a year later I still have some of the problems you mentioned but they are nowhere near as bad as they were.

If you read through other posts you will see that recovery is very slow and you have to rest as much as you can and especially when your body tells you to. I went through a period of not sleeping which made all the other symptoms I had so much worse. I was prescribed an antidepressant at night (a very small dose) and within days I was sleeping well and feeling much better. 

I guess you will see from other posts that recovery from stroke is a slow process and if you get SF (stroke fatigue) as well you will need to rest more, so you must be patient and give yourself time to recover properly, I’m afraid you can’t rush it.

Dont worry you’ll get there it just takes time, there are lots of people on here who will help you 


Hi Christine - trying to come to terms with a sudden and traumatic change is never easy, this is not something we've chosen, it happens out of the blue.  Stroke survivors, and their families have a lot to process - it's as though everything is starting again, and nothing is ever going to be quite as it was before.  How lucky for your family that you have looked after them so well, and now it's time for them to be understanding and supportive for you.  This will be a team effort, because you need all of your personal resources to be put into your recovery, the other 'stuff' will need to be shared out, certainly for these early months, maybe for a year.  If you try to do too much you will hit the wall, and your recovery will suffer.  I know that all sounds a bit grim, but honestly things will get better.  It has taken me a long time to adjust to our new life, and probably for the first year, I did everything; things I couldn't manage, such as sweeping the chimney, were done by friends, or I had to pay someone to do them.  I also work full time, as a special needs teacher, which means I also have a lot of work to do outside of school hours.  Needless to say, lots of things just didn't get done, fortunately I'm not particularly house proud, so I'm able to turn a blind eye to dust and untidyness!!  My priority was to allow my husband to make the best recovery he could, and I didn't make any demands of him.  The first time he made me a cup of coffee, months after his stroke, I just wanted to cry with happiness, because it meant he had thought about doing something for me!!  It sounds a bit lame on my part, but it genuinely made me happy.  

The single thing which most helped me adjust to the effects of a stroke, was finding this forum!  I really think the insights, advice, support and friendship helped me to survive the darkest of days.  So if your son and husband need help to come to terms with this event, they should read some stories from this site - they will read first hand accounts from stroke survivors, and they will then be able to see things from your perspective.  Many of the contributors are family members, giving their side of the story, or seeking help as to the best way to support their partner, parent or friend.  It's really important that they begin to adjust to the situation, this is time for action!!  You will also need to adjust to accepting help, it's difficult when you've been so independent, but work on the things you can do, and accept help for everything else until you are stronger.  This will enable you to concentrate on exercises, counselling, resting and allowing your brain to heal.  Encourage your family to read stories on this site - I'm sure it will help them, and ultimately bring you all closer together as you recover ? All good wishes xx  

Hi Christine, 

Just wondering if your husband is in denial about your stroke.  If he believes you can still do everything old Christine did he doesn't have to come to terms with you nearly dying. 

He may not want to deal with all those issues.  But I believe it would be better all round if he could.  

He needs to meet and greet new Christine and realise what a wonderful person she is. Just a thought. 

Welcome to the gang good luck with your recovery journey 

Kay fellow S.S


Many helpful tips. Don’t beat yourself up about ‘discovering the thing that you can’t do’. Take the high road and add it to a list of ‘things that you can’t do yet’. Make it goal to work on one, or break it down in easy pieces. The new goal setter, calendar, and journal make a solution all in one place. If you are more comfortable using a real piece of paper, go ahead! ? 

When you work on it, date it and write it down - positives and negatives. Now your analysing the problem, trying to get the goal achieved! I used to keep a journal of practice assignments and progress on the pieces and techniques when I took piano lessons in university.

Good luck and keep us informed about your progress!