Super Sucky Post-Stroke Fatigue

hamster-wheels w charactersOf all the impairments brought on by my stroke: dead arm, distorted sense of time, cramped foot and leg and sorry math skills.

Fatigue is the most challenging. Even though I schedule a ritual  nap everyday, I have difficulty falling asleep.

I can be staggering with exhaustion but the incessant hamster wheel in my head whirls with centrifugal force.

I’ve worked out ways to compensate for most of my host stroke debilitations. But I can’t figure out how to compensate for zero energy.

I hold things with my feet or knees or whatever wedge I can find; I have a 3 foot wide clock on my living room wall; I walk with a hiking stick on rough on the services; I use the calculator on my phone to check all my mental ciphers.

I took sleeping medication for a long time. But a good eight- hour sleep only lasts until about 2:00 PM when I usually run completely out of juice.

Despite my dragging body and clouded mind, sleep is evasive. I lie there on my comfy bed in my quiet room willing myself to rest. That is about the time every single project or future project I have ever considered begins tapping on my mind’s shoulder. A fretful mind does not rest. This may sound like worrying, but I really don’t worry, I wish. Sometimes my desire for increased independence immobilizes me. Without rest there is limited energy for progress.

I guess the most independent part of me is the hamster in my head. She does whatever. She wants. She wants to run the wheel. Like the Energizer bunny she is unstoppable.

This issue is exponentially worse when I am working on a novel or other piece of writing because then all the fictional characters bring their own hamster wheels and set them up crowding the original hamster. They all race along suggesting plot twists and snappy dialogue to the point that I am more exhausted after a “nap” than before.

Something must be done to get me to the point illustrated below:


hamster wheel w sleeping cat


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 and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Super Sucky Post-Stroke Fatigue

  1. I call the crushing fatigue a stroke can create the “promise breaker.”

  2. Elizabeth says:

    Unfortunately, you are not alone. This post stroke fatigue has been life changing for me. 😦 I appear fine to any outsider, but the fatigue hits daily….and I MUST nap or I can not function. It sucks and makes it very hard to live a “normal” life. Every single day, I am making choices on what I can/can’t do or how I do an activity. I must always choose the activity that steals less enegy. The “spoon theory” is exactly how I approach the day. How much energy does it take? Is there an “easier” less energy consuming alternative? With two little kids at home, I can not run out of energy until they are in bed…so its a high stakes game that I can’t afford to lose. I wish it would resolve. I’m 5 years out, and its improved a lot but not nearly enough to be “normal”. I try to stay positive because I have been so lucky. I am actually doing very well considering where I was…but this fatigue is life changing.

  3. redline143 says:

    Liked, Hell I loved this I can relate to so many of the things that you can articulate thank you.

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