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It is exactly a year since I walked out of the house on a Monday morning with a stiff arm and by Tuesday midnight I was in intensive care. Three months in ICU and three months in rehab and I expected to be 100% cured. I know that I am very lucky – well I am still here to tell the tale.
I don’t remember much about ICU except for the bad dreams but I do remember friends visiting and yesterday one of those friends said that she had not expected to be out walking at all. At least I can get about despite my legs being still a bit wobbly. I think I am only about 75% back to normal. It certainly is GBS getting better ‘slowly’, and at least I am not in pain.
I am still not able to wash and dress myself totally and though I can sort of write with my right hand I cannot hold my fingers out straight and cannot lift my arms very high so cupboards are a no no…. Getting toothpaste out of a tube or lotion out of a bottle are impossible – my right shoulder hurts when I lift it too high – I have had one steroid injection but probably will need another. But it is my head that really suffers! I lisp because my tongue seems too large for my mouth, which makes chewing difficult. I am still really on a soft diet though I do try crisps etc (nice unhealthy things!) but salad gets stuck (not enough saliva), meat gets swallowed in too large lumps and gets stuck with uncomfortable results. Bread gets sucked (uuggh) but I hope that will eventually improve. The nearest I have got to cooking is to open a tin of baked beans and put the bread into a toaster!
All in all I did not expect to be incapacitated for so long but when I left rehab I realised it was going to be a long haul and at the age of 71 feel I have made a good recovery and hope it continues. With a wonderful husband and family I can count myself very lucky.



June 2010
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