Recently had stroke. Feeling frustrated at not feeling like my old self

This is my first post on this forum

I am 53 and had a stroke caused by a blood clot in my brain almost three months ago. Compared to the original diagnosis when it first happened that I might not survive, I have come out of it comparatively well.

I am suffering from short term memory recall issues (struggling to name everyday simple things and events), problems with my eyesight (I have lost some of the vision field in the top right hand quadrant of both eyes), extreme fatigue and a loss of appetite (everything smells and tastes strongly)

One of my main concerns is my mental health. I was always extremely in control of everything and very active and organised. I don’t feel anything like that and I’m worried that I will never return to being who I was or what I was and that really scares me.

My friends and family tell that they can see improvements day to day that I just don’t see or feel

Is what I’m feeling normal? Has anybody suffered in the same way and have any advice or guidance on how to deal with it? Does nobody have similar symptoms around fatigue, appetite and short term memory loss and have any tips for dealing with these

Many thanks

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Hello and welcome. There are many people contribute to these forums and I am sure there will be people with very similar symptoms to yourself. I have found the community to be a good place to give and receive help from fellow stroke sufferers.

  1. Fatigue is something I suffer with. It has been a learning process for me. Learning how much physical activity I can tolerate and planning ample rest time so that the fatigue does not become sheer exhaustion

  2. Mental Health. I have had issues with depression. I spoke to my GP about this and he arranged appropriate help.

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Welcome on board, though I’m sorry you’ve had to join us, you have come to the right place for reassurance, advice and support…you’ll get lots of that here :smile:

It’s all normal and all stroke survivors experience similar if not the same…some depends on what area of the brain is affected. But rest assured you are only in the early stages of recovery at 3wks, it takes at least 6mths that’s when the most healing occurs so its crucial that you get lots of rest. After that it slows down…it’s all similar to that of a new born baby :smile:

Fatigue is common in most stroke survivors, sleep and frequent naps are vital to your brain’s recover so don’t fight it, it’s when our brain’s process the hardest work in our sleep.

Same for short term memory at this stage, your brain has to maintain current functionality whilst at the same time going through the healing process and a certain amount of retraining. It has an awful lot of plates to juggle, is it really any wonder it’s struggling…just as you would have done prior to the stroke when you’d have a lot of things happening at once. It’ll improve as your brain heals.

Those two can go hand in hand with weight loss also, so keep an eye on that. Maybe start taking a nutrient supplement like Complan or multivitamins as healing takes a lot out the body. Maybe just stick with bland foods for a few weeks and eat plenty of protein foods as muscle atrophy can be an issue after strokes. But just eat plenty of what you can tolerate for the moment along with supplements 'til the brain rights itself.

Lots of SS recommend keeping a daily diary for that very reason, so you can look back and see for yourself where you have made improvement. Personally I’ve never been any good with things like that, same with list, easily forgotten once out of sight. But for many people they have been so worth while so it might be worth giving it try.

All in all it’s all very normal in stroke recovery!

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@kjmeyler welcome to the forum. Sorry you’ve had cause to join us but now youre hers you’re very welcome.

I too suffer with loss of appetite & 17 months on it hasn’t got better but i remain hopeful. In the first 6 months i had awful fatigue & thought it was never going to lift. Thankfully it is improved but i still suffer. Finding your limits & working within them is really important. Rest is also very important at this early stage.

Stroke is a big event & can affect your mood / mental health. Accepting that it has changed you can be difficult but hopefully in time you’ll do this but you should also find that things start to improve for you too.

Best wishes.

Ann

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@kjmeyler

Keep coming back to this forum.
Write about what happened to you, write about what you think comes next. Let us know how things are now.

You are on an eventful journey, away from a horrible occurrence.
It is a voyage during which you will have doubts and dark moments, suddenly you will have improvements and successes. You will surprise yourself and achieve more than you thought possible.

Read what others have had to say about this experience.
You will find ways of dealing with things. We share what happens to us. There is a place here to be heard, to be understood and to understand. Your progress can be an example to share with others.

Sometimes you will be too worn out to make an effort.
You will feel tired and everything will feel hopeless, but you can communicate that here and will gain support and encouragement.

I wish you well and look forward to hearing more from you.

Keep on keepin’ on
:smiley: :+1:

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Welcome - what everyone has said is so true. I too wish that I could keep a diary but can’t be bothered - looking back though I have made progress, much though it’s in a very two steps forward one step back (not that stepping backwards is something I can really do any more) way. This forum has been so helpful and hopeful with realistic accounts from others

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One suggestion regarding vision, I too have lost some peripheral vision and found wraparound sun glasses essential on bright days.

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Hi i had a left side mca stroke on 13th January. It affectrf my right side of the body which fortunately with the help of occupational health i have nealy full use of my arm and leg. I do suffer from extreme fatjgue and like you i wonder when im going to feel normal.
Please come back and share how you are getting on. Anne

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Wearing sunglasses is a good idea. I do that and I also wear a peaked baseball cap to keep direct sunlight off my face. That is an added bonus.

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Am 30 years post stroke at only 28. Had a brilliant life, and job. Was a private legal assistant. Married for 7 years. Life was fab. Collapsed, and almost died. Was in a coma for months following stroke. Awoke, totally paralysed and unable to talk. How terrifying at such a young age!! Was in hospital for a year, and overcame 100% paralysis, regained my speech (about 99.9% now), and live alone as my husband divorced me during my hospital stay. Endured major open heart surgery during my stay too. Left in a wheelchair. Now use a walker very gingerly, chair sometimes. Have dizziness, and uncomfortable legs. Broke hip year before Covid. Done years of voluntary work and/or courses. Am a lifelong poet, and have worked with worldwide musicians. I write lyrics and they write music. Nobody famous, but we have made 7 CDs. Have spells of depression and hated being disabled ever since. Great finding fellow sufferers and bless you all xx

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@Spacer good to read your story & you sure did have a tough time after your stroke & at such a young age too.

It’s great to read about you writing poetry & making CDs. Proof that whilst life may not be as you planned it can still have lots of good bits.

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Thanks so much guys! Yeah, it has been really tough. Been on here for a year or so, on and off. Good to hear how everyone is. Will stay strong, and hope y’all do too. Carole xx

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I agree with Emerald,

give it another 3 months, and you hould feel much more stable and confident
I am 6.5 months post stroke and starting to feel just that
I also think a lot of ppl will be encouraging you and claiming progress just to be positive… with me, it didn’t always reflect my true progress. They’re frightened too.

wishing yoou all the best
ciao, Roland

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Hi! I had a stroke last November and was treated very quickly ! Physically I’m fine although my heart is not very efficient as I now have AF. I do suffer from fatigue and can sleep all day! Sunlight seems to affect my eyes. Food seems to be unimportant! With the warmer weather I’m going to go for a walk tomorrow.

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You sound like me and I’m 76! I recovered very quickly from my stroke.At first I was in denial but the scan proved otherwise. I’ve subsequently developed AF and am being treated for that. I experience extreme fatigue, lack of interest in food and poly pharmacy! Will go for a walk tomorrow, thankfully the warmer weather is here so no more excuses!

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@Richard3

I keep on putting off going out for that walk. It can only do us some good though.

Must try harder, as my school report of 60 years ago used to say. You’d have thought I’d have learnt by now.

. . . but you are an old man, I’m comparatively young.
It will be 5 days before I reach your age, old timer.

Take care buddy and look both ways before you cross the road.

Keep on keepin’ on
:smiley: :+1:

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I am 2 years down the line and i still feel a little frustrated at myself. My heart sent a blood clot to my brain so i know how that feels. You always need to remember this is a marathon and not a race and take each day as it comes or more frustration comes. Good to see your here as everyone is a good bunch and can always answer questions you ask. In certain ways we have been there anf some of us still are it can be a long road and i have realised this is easier to walk the road than anything else…

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@sunnyday. Thank you so much for your message. Having previously been so active I’m struggling with how tired I feel. I guess I’m just going to have to pace myself better

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@EmeraldEyes. Thank you so much for your reply and advice. I am keeping a diary that does help. It is good to hear from fellow sufferers that I’m still early on my recovery

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I did it! Went for a 40 minute walk and apart from wobbly pavements finally achieved it! It did feel like my school report “ could do better “! Mind you, after breakfast, I sat down with a mug of tea and fell asleep!

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