Scottish carer shares their first glimmer of hope after Mum’s stroke
Stacey Miller from Paisley is supporting the Stroke Association’s ‘Hope After Stroke’ Christmas appeal, after her Mum, Andrea, had a stroke at the age of 45. Thanks to the Stroke Association in Scotland, both Andrea and Stacey have been attending a Stroke Café that has been a life saver for both. It’s given them the opportunity to meet others who have been through a similar experience. The social interaction and peer support has given both them a belief that lives can be rebuilt again– that there is a glimmer of hope after stroke.Andrea spent hours, days, and months undergoing intensive rehabilitation in hospital uncertain as to what the future may hold. But when Andrea left hospital six months later, Stacey was amazed with how far she’d come.
Although Andrea still relies on care, she is in her own home and that means the world to her. Having her two daughters and sister come in and look after her care needs is so much easier than being in hospital. And although Andrea’s communication difficulties have been challenging, she and her family have found new ways to communicate.
And now Christmas is upon us, Stacey is making preparations with her Mum.
“Mum loved Christmas, it was always a big thing for her. The stroke took away her freedom to make plans for Christmas and go out and about purchasing all the things that gave her and everyone else joy. We knew after the stroke Christmas would be a very different affair, but as Mum’s confidence has grown, she is now more involved. She participates in decisions over plans, presents etc., even if she can’t physically carry them out. Christmas is always more magical with kids around and Mum is loving the idea of being involved with my two year-old putting up the Christmas tree and looking at all the baubles and decorations together.
“It brings a tear to my eye, watching her with Noah John. It’s as if nothing has changed and her love of life is still there.
“But I’m aware of her ongoing needs. The Stroke Association in Scotland has been invaluable in offering a sense of purpose both to Mum and me, that life can be normal again.”
Stacey is asking people to make a donation to the Stroke Association’s work supporting people affected by stroke, as they rebuild their lives this Christmas.
To donate or for more information about stroke and the vital role that hope plays in stroke recovery and rebuilding lives, please visit www.stroke.org.uk/hope