My AVM ruptured in Janitary 2015, I was 30. It was a massive bleed. I was with my wife at the time and she was able to call 911 and save my life. Without her I would have died, I remember telling her the pain was going away and I’d be ok. I was actually foaming out of the mouth and bleeding out of my ear.
Here is the short story: I was placed in a medically induced coma and an emergency craniotomy was performed. I woke up and did in house rehab and learned to walk again with a walker. 6 months after waking up I learned to walk again on my own. A positive attitude and hopeful spirit go a long way. I went through multiple angiograms, Dr. Malik, and had cyber knife radiation. I’m still getting better everyday, even though the experts say it’s only a 3 year window. Recently it’s been the short term memory getting better.
Here is the long story: The ambulance made it to the hospital in under 20 minutes. The drive takes my wife and I at least 30 minutes. The doctors informed my wife multiple times, the bleed was too severe and I was going to die. An emergency craniotomy was performed by Dr. Osborne to remove the excess blood. I was placed in a medically induced coma, weeks passed including my 31st birthday and I hadn’t woken up. My wife was informed that I probably wouldn’t ever wake up, the damage was too severe, and if I did wake up, they didn’t know how it had affected me. When I did wake up, I was VERY confused. I had legs and there was no apparent damage to my body but I couldn’t walk, felt very drunk, and was saying whatever came to my mind- it is what I now refer to as my filter. After a couple of very hard weeks in the hospital, I could walk again but needed a walker. It was a miracle I was alive, let alone I could get around on my own. Every dr or therapist I ever met all said I would be ok because I kept a positive attitude, and I attribute that due to the fact of being very drunk feeling and God. My grandmother always said to me as an angry child, “nothing matters but Jesus”. It’s true nothing matters in life other than Jesus who is love. It didn’t matter I couldn’t walk, at least I was alive. I was released from the hospital shortly after. I had a very hard time in the hospital due to the fact when I woke up a lot of my filters were damaged. I am a veteran American man and you won’t tell me what to do, at least that was my thinking. I fell more times than I can count, I had legs so why couldn’t I walk. It also caused numerous problems with nurses and doctors, they act like they know everything and they don’t and I HAD to correct them, another filter issue. So I was released into my wife’s care. Before the stroke I was the sole provider as I was an electrician, my wife had to go to work in order for us to survive. I had health insurance and the owner, David Dickerson, of the company, North Atlantic Electric, kept paying my insurance for a whole year after the stroke. In Florida’s you are allowed to fire an employee if they can’t work, unless it’s a work related accident and it wasn’t. The insurance only covered about 3 months of out patient therapy. A month went by with no therapy and it got a little darker. Another miracle was around the corner, a high school friend, Dr. Natalie DeJesse, who became a chiropractor approached my wife and offered free, yes free, therapy. It lasted for over 2 years at Cima Health and Wellness where her father, brother, and herself all gave me therapy. I made leaps and bounds in my recovery. I now am now a stay at home father and the role in my household has changed. Which brings up another great point, change is inevitable. There are many ups and downs in daily life but I always try to focus on positives than negatives, I can’t do this or that but at least I don’t have to go to work everyday. I am off man-made medication, I only use canabis to help with the anxiety. I am now trying to rejoin the workforce and provide a better life for my family. I’m very blessed to be an American and have a disability allowance.
There are always positives, you just have to see them.