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Stroke recovery.


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Last saturday night I was able again to play with "the band" for the monthly Ball in our local town. I had an especially wonderfull time, watching a hall full of people enjoying their dancing and I felt so priviliged to be in such fine company, among friends.

This experience was particularly poignant for me because three months ago I had a Stroke and when I came out of hospital the first thing I wanted to do was check my ability to play my instruments. Well, this was very frustrating, as anyone who has suffered a Stroke will tell you.

 

My first attempts at playing the English were a total failure,of course, because my stroke had affected control of my left side the coordination of left and right hands was nowhere near fine enough to get anything more than gibberish music.

 

So I tried the Duet and that made more sense... at least I could play the melody on the right and fumble bits of accompaniment on the left.. it got me started again.

 

I was heartened and helped by the postings of other Stroke victims here on Cnet too and so thanks for that.In fact Forums like Cnet are so helpfull and entertaining when one has nothing much to do during a recuperation period.When I felt sorry for myself I could take heart from the fact that my Stroke was not too severe and that I should just take it as a warning to start behaving myself.

 

With constant daily practice I have regained most of the use of my left hand and the EC is back "in the Band" and my Maccann playing has improved too.

 

You might never aprieciate the value of what you have untill it's gone!

Edited by Geoff Wooff
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Last saturday night I was able again to play with "the band" for the monthly Ball in our local town. I had an especially wonderfull time, watching a hall full of people enjoying their dancing and I felt so priviliged to be in such fine company, among friends.

This experience was particularly poignant for me because three months ago I had a Stroke and when I came out of hospital the first thing I wanted to do was check my ability to play my instruments. Well, this was very frustrating, as anyone who has suffered a Stroke will tell you.

 

My first attempts at playing the English were a total failure,of course, because my stroke had affected control of my left side the coordination of left and right hands was nowhere near fine enough to get anything more than gibberish music.

 

So I tried the Duet and that made more sense... at least I could play the melody on the right and fumble bits of accompaniment on the left.. it got me started again.

 

I was heartened and helped by the postings of other Stroke victims here on Cnet too and so thanks for that.In fact Forums like Cnet are so helpfull and entertaining when one has nothing much to do during a recuperation period.When I felt sorry for myself I could take heart from the fact that my Stroke was not too severe and that I should just take it as a warning to start behaving myself.

 

With constant daily practice I have regained most of the use of my left hand and the EC is back "in the Band" and my Maccann playing has improved too.

 

You might never aprieciate the value of what you have untill it's gone!

 

Good luck Geoff. Keep at it and don't lose heart.

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Glad to hear your recovery is making good progress Geoff. It must have been extremely satisfying to be out playing again.

 

Two_Thumbs_Up_Emote_by_eStunt.gif

 

[edited to add:]

 

For anyone interested, here's a snap of Geoff and the rest of the band as they were playing in Chateauroux during the last weekend of May. A good night.

 

ChateaurouxBand.jpg?t=1355146448

Edited by Peter Laban
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Sorry to hear about the stroke, but delighted to read of your recovery. We've certainly benefited from your having time during your recovery to make extensive contributions to this forum.

 

An interesting array of instruments in Peter's photo (at least in terms of what I'm used to). Must be an interesting sound. It's also an interesting study of band footwear.

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....hmmmm; thanks for sharing your experiences with us all. I sort of figured concertina would be an excellent warning system for TIAs--those little sort of "walking strokes" that I hear about as I update health historys in the medical profession. Altho playing can also make me worry: on those nights when I'm playing really bad, I have these little conversations with myself----"what, did I have a stroke or something??" "no Michelle, you are just playing really bad".....at least you had a legitamate excuse, Goeff. I think we are all really, really happy to hear that a comeback is possible!

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I sort of figured concertina would be an excellent warning system for TIAs--those little sort of "walking strokes" that I hear about as I update health historys in the medical profession

TIA means Transient Ischemic Attack, where "ischemic" means "not getting enough blood" (the HEM in the middle of it is from the Latin word for "blood," as in hemorrhage and hemoglobin). TIAs are brief periods when you have trouble talking, seeing, feeling, or controlling one side of your body as a result of a temporary decrease of blood flow to a part of the brain. It is a short enough event that there is not time for brain tissue to actually die (otherwise it would be a stroke). They usually occur with little or no warning, and in fact are considered warnings of a possible stroke in the future.

 

David Barnert, MD

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to;

 

Mike Franch;

it has certainly been good therapy to post replies and keep in contact with other people through Cnet. This band does sometimes have more members and used to have two Hurdy Gurdy players but they have dropped out to form a new band with my wife (seated third from the right) and myself. this new group has a gig to play for a large Ball at New Year's Eve... we have some positive work to do before that!

The Band footwear, yes that is interesting, it was a warm evening but it has to be fairly cold before Mammoud the Bass gets his socks on... incidentally his six year old daughter is taller than me. :huh:

 

Scoopet;

yes staying in France for Christmas. That is your old concertina in the picture. :)

 

Shelly and David;

The problem that I had at the outset of my Stroke was in recognising it for what it was. The classic TV warnings show facial distortions and speach dificulties... none of which I suffered and in fact the initial sensations were so mild that I thought it would pass off by next morning.. whereas I know now that I should have gone straight away to the Stroke Unit. I have been amazed by the effects on my body by such an apparently mild attack. So, there is the message, any sudden dizyness or numbness, pins and needles etc. should be investigated as soon as possible. My local doctor took one look at me and called the ambulance!

 

Fearfeasog;

 

I just have to get the feeling back as near to 100% as possible, if for nothing else than for my work which relies so much on touch sensation of both hands. I would have to change my ocupation and that is not even contemplatable... but the Concertinas have definately helped tremendously with this.

 

Peter; thanks for the picture!

Edited by Geoff Wooff
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The Band footwear, yes that is interesting, it was a warm evening but it has to be fairly cold before Mammoud the Bass gets his socks on...

 

It WAS a lovely warm night (unlike any you would get in Clare) and watching the dancers at the time I realised everybody, especially the women, was wearing nice shoes of one sort or another. Which is also very unlike what I have become used to.

 

FWIW, my son thought having a bass player in the band was an absolutely brilliant move.

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Geoff,

 

Great to know you are on the mend. Good luck and let us know how your rehab progresses.

 

Interesting to hear that the duet was a helpful medium. I play the anglo like a duet....usually in octaves, with duplicate and independently fingered notes on either side...so as I age it is comforting to know I could try something like you did if it ever came to that. And maybe the dog wouldn't howl as much when I play if I dropped out some percentage of the duplicate (octave) notes!

 

Dan

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V good Geoff ! - keep up the squeezing and playing the toons: the brain is pretty clever at working round blockages and creating new routes for the same thing.

This ain't new -- my old Classics prof had a bad stroke in the 90s and he copied Demosthenes who put stones in his mouth to get his diction back -- my prof ended up not only speaking again without obvious difficulty but also driving.

 

And while we are on the Greek, one forgives Dave for his dropping the 'a' in ischaemic etc -- they can't help it over there!!LoL

 

Did you know too that the US preventative way of protecting the Royal Wooof blood is now to invoke Queen Liz II who was coronated (Yeah -- honest!!) in 1953 but is still going strong and stroke free. :rolleyes: :rolleyes:

 

It does get to me, the old rat poison :rolleyes:

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Sorry to hear of the health issues, and delighted to hear you are overcoming them. Many of us know of the fine instruments you own and all of us are delighted to know they will not be for sale in the near future!

 

Have a joyous holiday season and play lots of good music.

 

 

Chuck Boody

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