About a month ago, my father had a very massive stroke. Because he lives so remotely, he wasn’t able to get that stroke treatment that can mitigate the effects of the bleeding on the brain. He is now at the Victoria General Hospital going through an impressive rehab regime to try and recover as much as he can from the damage to his brain. He has major deficits physically, cognitively and in speech.
My dad has always been a very talkative intelligent man with a lot to say. Seeing him reduced to speaking in gibberish and getting easily lost in conversation has been one of the more shocking things about the transformation. It’s a process of mourning the loss of the man that was and dealing with the needs of the life for the man now. Stroke recovery is very mysterious. You really have no idea how a person will recover and to point the brain will come back.
My sister and I both live in Vancouver, which has meant caring for his needs have been especially difficult. Local friends and family in Victoria have been tremendous in helping with visits and supporting us when we are over there. Hopefully when he is done his rehab, we can move him over to the mainland, but that process is another hurdle that we need to climb.
The whole experience has been challenging, overwhelming and heart breaking. We are having to take a man who has been very independent his whole life and boil it down to essentials. At the same time, going through a mountain of paperwork just to figure out his life and where everything is at.
It’s a very difficult time for me and my sister. Some folks try to tell me to look on the bright side, and frankly, there are very little bright sides right now. It’s brutal. Please understand if I don’t feel like talking about it.
Thankfully some great folks have stepped in to cover the inkstuds for me over the next while. When I am not focused on my dad or my day job, I am trying to focus on my own health and making it through the point in time. I don’t talk about family often, because in a lot of ways, my family is a weird abstract concept that is difficult to navigate.
I hope to start doing interviews again within the next couple of months, but I can’t make any promises.
Many of the recordings from the first couple of years of inkstuds live on air are thanks to my dad recording them from the CiTR internet broadcast. Before they had a solid plan for recording shows for podcasting.
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