“You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ‘I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.’ You must do the thing you think you cannot do.”

– Eleanor Roosevelt

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Dorita DeLemos Down
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You have had a Stroke! Now what do you do? How to overcome the so-called consequences of having suffered a Stroke!

 

First and foremost, follow these Rules:

  1. POSTURE: walk as straight as you can, at all times. Hold your head up high. This may not be easy to do, but do try, because standing up gives a feeling of strength, control and wellness.
  2. SMILE: You have had a severe shock, you may not want to get into groups or meet people. Nevertheless, you will, and then smile, smile and smile some more, as you make contacts with others, at the rehab facility, at the doctor’s office, on the bus, anywhere. It may make you feel better, and you do not convey the feeling of isolation. Others may smile back at you, and human contact has been made. It helps to make you feel part of the world.
  3. SPEAK LOUD: you may not be able to speak very well, due to aphasia or other conditions resulting from your Stroke. But try to get a work out to whomever you meet. Speak up and loud so that you can be heard. This will keep you alert, active mentally and involved with others.
  4. MEDICINE: be sure to take your medication as it is prescribed by your physician. Have emergency backup supplies of drugs everywhere. Don’t let your anger at your Stroke keep you from taking your medication, and should you travel, never put them in checked luggage.
  5. NO EXCUSES: Never use the fact that you ha a Stroke as an excuse to get out of things you don’t want to do. But do not do foolish things, especially things that might affect the safety of yourself and others.
  6. BURDEN/HELP: no one want to be a burden to their family and friends. But learn to accept help graciously when offered by and from anyone.
  7. EXERCISE: make a plan, set a goal, get a partner, hire a trainer. Whatever works for you, but get off the couch and/or chair and do your exercises. Then do them again and again.
  8. RELAX: Your condition rarely seems so dramatic to others as they seem to you. Relax, Everybody is not watching you!
  9. COMMUNICATE: Mystery does not help anyone, share your experience with Stroke with friends, co-workers, family, tell them about it, what happened before, during and after. The information shared might save someone’s life.
  10. SHARE: Find another Stroke Survivor, compare notes, unburden yourself, and above all, join a support group for just that, support. Remember, no two Strokes are alike, you might learn something as will others from you
  11. GRACE: No one was a volunteer to experience Stroke! Confront the results with grace and dignity. Acting out your anger is being self-indulgent and a waste of your limited energy.
  12. Do not Give Up, Remember there is Life After Stroke! But it is up to YOU!

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DoritaDelemos 300x400In 2014, Dorita DeLemos Down established “The P.A.C.E. Group, LLC”, under which she writes a blog and continues to lecture and write articles on brain injuries and stroke.  Recent information has proven that “The more you work with the brain, the healthier it becomes”.  She is a good example of that statement. From 2005 to 2008 she was engaged as Spanish language Consultant to NIH/NINDS and participated in lectures, conferences, and conventions nationwide.

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