NO WAY: My Mom Had A Stroke, Now What Do I Do?

When first talking to John, the social worker for the rehab floor at the Hospital, I asked him “Is there a book I can read to help me through all this?” Pointing to my hand, “That folder I gave you has some pamphlets with information regarding causes for stokes and recovery for victims,” was his response. “No, no. I mean I’m a daughter of a woman who recently had a stroke and I don’t know what to do. Like the book would be called ‘My Mom Had A Stroke, Now What Do I Do?’ You know of any books like that?” John, the social worker who I soon learned is a Mecca of social workers for rehab patients in the Chambersburg area, replied “No. I haven’t heard of anything like that.” And so, 6 years later, I decided to start this blog.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

The Phone Call

September 30, 2006 @ 4:00 P.M.
Caller ID: Chambersburg Hosp 717-555-5555


Peggy Anne, this is your father.

Hey Dad.

Your mother is in the hospital.


She’s had a stroke.

Okaaaaaay?  What. Happened?

She was cooking pancakes this morning and slumped over the stove.  I got her to the floor and called 911.  We’ve been here all day.

So. How. Is. She?

She’s been moved up to a room.


Well, I’ve left a message for Paul and you should call Patrick.

Should   we   come   up?

I’d wait until we know more.

Dad, is she up and talking?

No, she’s unresponsive.

Dad, I’ll make some phone calls, then we are coming up.

Okay, but she is really out of it and doesn’t know what’s going on.

Okay – we want to come up.

Okay, I’m just telling you so you are not surprised when you get here…she’s unresponsive.


I hang up the phone, stumble out the garage and follow the sound of the pressure washer to the front door where Mike is working on the front of the house.  I don’t remember when I started screaming…MIKE   MIIIIIKE   MIIIIIIIIIKE.  He finally turns to see me and drops the sprayer, holding out his hands to me as he walks towards me.  I’m screaming and gasping for air…”momhadastroke, MOMHADASTROKE!”  I cry out repeatedly “OH MY GOD OH MY GOD” as Mike leads me back into the house and helps me lay on the couch, he’s on his knees, head tilted towards mine, stroking my hair…”shhhh shhhhh shhhhh”.  I gulp air until I can repeat what Dad has told me.  Mike packs a bag as I scream.  We get in the car and Mike begins to drive.  I make some phone calls then stare blankly out the car window. 


My mom had a stroke.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Finally the Beginning


This blog is finally underway.  After pondering over the idea of writing about our family's experience with the stroke Mom suffered just about 6 years ago, it has taken me literally 2 minutes to set up this blog.  And so the journey of revisiting these episodes in our lives begins.  This will be an interesting ride, to look back knowing what we know now. Some passages may be still be too fresh, we may cry. Yet after reading through some of the emails, there is sure to be many smiles and a wee bit of laughter too.

The stroke happened on September 30, 2006.  This coming Sunday, September 30, 2012, 6 years to the day, I plan to post about the phone call I received from Dad and the events leading up to the first email  in which I sent to many of you to carry the message of the massive stroke that caused Mom and our family much upheaval.

Be sure to click on the Follow button to the right of this post and you will be sent an email when new posts are made.  I plan to post the next email in the series each Sunday.

Much Love,
Peggy Anne