Arm Wrestling

fist 1Warning, this post may not be chipper.

This blog is about stroke recovery, so some less than sunny snapshots should be no surprise.

Due to health insurance changes, and questionable effectiveness versus out-of-pocket costs, it has been nine months since Lida’s last Botox treatment.

Despite multiple daily stretching and strengthening exercises, plus ongoing occupational therapy, Lida is regressing.

Spasticity is on the rise. It’s a bout of brute force to pry my fingers from their tight little fist.

Lida’s hand is completely unresponsive to commands. She just lies there and tingles with internal fire, deaf to my requests to relax, or make the most minuscule movement.

For the first time since I inquired about the possibility of amputation at the rehab hospital, three years ago, I am on the verge of giving up hope for Lida’s reawakening.

The battle is exhausting.

I have become rather adept at life with one hand. And could manage for the rest of it single-handedly.

But really, giving up is not my style. So I’ll get another round of Botox, and work even harder to wake my hand.

My ever positive cheerleaders will rouse and carry me when I need them. Thank you: you know who you are.




About Vic Cobb Fountain

Empowered Stroke survivor: appreciating where I've been, anticipating where I'm going.
This entry was posted in stroke, stroke recovery, stroke survivor and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Arm Wrestling

  1. oc1dean says:

    Vic, try thermal stimulation.
    Facilitation of Sensory and Motor Recovery by Thermal Intervention for the Hemiplegic Upper Limb in Acute Stroke Patients.
    Basically 15 seconds warm 30 seconds cool.

  2. barbpolan says:

    Vic, I credit mirror therapy with my hand being far more relaxed than previously. I simply set up, then open and close my hand, trying like mad to get my left to do the same. I started with 2-hour sessions (mind-numbingly boring) every day, but then dropped down to 20-minute sessions after a couple of months of the long ones. Good luck.

  3. Marta Szwaya says:

    Vic and Barb; have you read about Brunstrom’s stages of recovery. I read it in Stronger after Stroke p.48 to be exact . this theory exactly mirrors theprogression my recovery has followed, so I have confidence in it. After going through a miserable stage of spasticity, I have graduated out of it, with my hand being relaxed and I have not done any useless excercise. I live the fullest life possible:working, entertaining and everything else any 60 year old would do. i believe my brain is continuing to heal…will I get back to the way I was pre-stroke. I don’t know but I did not want to trash the time I have today. this may not be the path for others, but it is the one I have chosen; and so far so good.I am active, I am fully engaged in life, and I go forward. M

  4. barb0803 says:

    Yes, the battle IS exhausting – physically and emotionally. Perseverance is not easy in the face of Lida’s relentless recalcitrance, but is really the only option for those who want to keep striving to recover.

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