This is another in a series of posts about things Strokees wish you knew.
Many people don’t realize that one of the most effective therapies following a stroke is sleep. Uninterrupted. Peaceful. Restorative. Healing. Sleep.
On those days when I’ve slept well the night before, I seem to make the most progress in physical therapy, and I seem to have the easiest time exercising. I also seem more clearheaded and able to handle more things at once.
On those days when I haven’t slept well the night before, I seem to stumble the most, sometimes fall down, and the more emotional and less able to handle things I seem to be.
Think of it this way. I can’t walk well these days. I can’t do strenuous yard work. I can’t spend a lot of time at the gym. I’m pretty much tired all the time. I may or may not be taking medicine that makes me feel out of it. I can no longer easily handle a bunch of things coming at me from different directions all at once, and I can’t really smell or taste much of anything anymore. At least for right now. So there really isn’t a whole lot for me to thoroughly enjoy these days. But one thing I can still do well is sleep. And I still really enjoy sleeping.
You see, my body is still healing, still waking up old connections, or making new connections, between my brain and those parts of me that don’t work so well anymore. After all, as of this publishing date, I’m only at 69 days since my stroke. So I’m still healing. Whenever you are trying to heal, you want to sleep. A lot. And that’s what Strokees, especially recent Strokees, need the most in order to heal.
We really love it when you call to check on us or stop by to bring us a present of homemade muffins or some homemade soup. We really do. And we want you to keep doing that. Especially the muffins.
Just please understand that we may nowadays go to bed early, sleep late, or take a nap during lunch. We NEED that sleep. Just like a newborn baby, our bodies are adjusting and growing, healing. And just like a newborn baby, we need to sleep.
So please understand and please don’t get mad or offended when we don’t immediately answer your phone call, your text, your email, or answer the door; we’re probably engaged in “healing therapy” (sleeping) so we can ultimately recover as quickly and as fully as possible.
And please don’t stop calling, texting, emailing, or coming by. Especially with presents. (Don’t forget those muffins!) We really love it when you do that.