One of the biggest contributions to my recovery is my family’s support. They have been right by my side from the very beginning. They stayed with me at the hospital for the few days I was there after my stroke. Mom was flying to England to see her mother when it happened, but she caught the next flight back and stayed by my side until I was transferred to Toronto Rehab as an inpatient. My parents and sisters visited me every day while I was an inpatient, which made my stay at Toronto Rehab easy; I never felt lonely. They would take me out for strolls so I could get a change in scenery and if the meals at Toronto rehab were bad, I always knew my family would bring me something when they came to visit.
I was able to go home on the weekends while I was an inpatient at Toronto Rehab. I was still in a wheelchair at that point and without the support of my family, I would not have had the confidence to move forward and become mobile. I may be the oldest child, but after the stroke I became the baby of the family. My family became overprotective, which wasn’t necessarily a good thing but I had my confidence because I was able to depend on them. To be fully independent though, I realized that I couldn’t always depend on their help., When I go out on my own now I always let them know where I am for their peace of mind, but I am confident doing so on my own.
There is a saying, which really caught my eye after the stroke, “blood makes you related, loyalty makes you family” which is absolutely true. The amount of support I received from family friends was incredible. Everyone showed up to the hospital as soon as they heard what had happened. They have been praying for my recovery ever since and they have provided moral support to my family and me. They might not be blood, but they are definitely family. What more could I ask for.
They say that hard times reveal true friends, and it’s actually true. I got to experience this first hand post stroke. After my discharge from Toronto rehab, I had a lot of spare time at home. Few friends would keep in touch and occasionally take me out or come to my home and hang out. Going out with them helped me gain the confidence to be independent.
Family is not just an important thing, in my case, it’s everything. If it wasn’t for the love of my family, my recovery would not be as smooth as it has been. We might butt heads at times, but that’s what family does. My team is in it to win it.