My name is Karissa. I am married to a guy named Blake. We have been together since high school and we were married in July of 2004. In October of 2006 our daughter Isabella was born. We had our ups and downs over the next few years but 2010 sarted with a rather big blow to us. On February 1 Blake and I moved into a new apartment. I felt fine that day but just tired and stressed from moving. My sister said I looked a little of it but nothing major felt wrong. Went to bed that night and the next morning woke up feeling wiped out but didn’t think anything was wrong. I tried to stand up to get ready for work and fell down. I heard a snap but didn’t feel anything. I just thought I was really tired. Then Blake was trying to talk to me. He kept yelling at me to stop talking funny but I didn’t think I was talking funny and didn’t understand what he meant. I couldn’t hear myself and didn’t realize that my face had drooped and I was slurring my words. Blake called my mom and his mom because he was freaked out and wasn’t sure what to do. I remember listening to him not understanding why he was making such a big deal. To my understanding I was just tired and wanted to go back to sleep. Blake helped me get back in bed because I couldn’t do it on my own. I didn’t realize even then that I was unable to physically move the left side of my body. It just seemed heavy which I thought was just from the fatigue of moving Then Blake decided to call 911 because something really seemed to be wrong with me. At that moment I couldn’t believe how much he was overreacting because to me nothing seemed wrong. I guess there is a part of your brain that gets triggered that there is an emergency and makes you panic. That never happened I had no idea that something was wrong mostly because I felt no pain. Pain is what tells you to be afraid or seek help . Since I felt nothing the reaction from Blake seemed ridiculous. The paramedics showed up and put me on the gurney. They asked Blake a bunch of questions about me and then told him where they were taking me and how to get there. Then they put me in the ambulance which is where I started to panic. I have a huge fear of needles and they wanted to do an IV. I couldn’t believe that Blake had just left me with the paramedics and I was so scared. I didn’t know where Blake was and why he left me. He was with Bella who was freaking out that the paramedics had taken me away poor baby
I remember being in the ambulance a little and then getting to the hospital. That’s the point where I started freaking out. I wasn’t sure where I was and still didn’t understand why I was there. I still thought the only thing wrong was that I was tired. Even though there was still no pain I understood that something was wrong and became afraid In my confused state I started getting worried that since I didn’t know where I was Blake wouldn’t be able to find me. The only thing I really understood was that I wanted the IV out. Most of what happens the rest of the day I learned from others because I only have flashes of it. Also I thought a lot of things that I don’t remember saying but I guess I was talking but I only remember thinking it. The last real memory is going in to the hospital and then 8 days later. Most of that time had to be filled in by others.
They ran some tests to discover what was wrong. They found a blood clot on the right side of my brain. This was about the time Blake got there and they explained that I had suffered a stroke. Because there was no way of knowing when the stroke had actually happened they couldn’t give me a certain kind of medicine because you have to give it within a specific amount of time after the stroke and there was no way to know. So they told Blake the options were surgery to remove the clot but that was risky because it could cause bleeding or medicine to dissolve it. Blake chose the medicine. They ran a lot of tests to figure out why I had the stroke and the only answer that has ever been found is that I was on birth control. I have zero other risk factors.
Also I guess I was asking about Bella but don’t really remember that. I know I thought about her but I was so confused that I didn’t know where she was. My parents got there at the same time Blake did and then my sisters got there. I don’t remember them being there
All I can really remember is Blake being there but he kept disappearing. He would be there but then I would go under again and when I came to he was gone. Each time was scary also I was so thirsty and wanted a soda. I guess I kept saying this but I couldn’t drink anything because I couldn’t swallow. They couldn’t even give me ice chips because I could choke all I could do was suck on a sponge I just wanted to go home for just a few minutes and get something to drink. Then I was in a room with Blake and my parents went to take a walk since I seemed ok. I was talking and ok and then everything changed. I started having a seizure I was convulsing and turned blue. My parents came BACK FROM Their walk and I was no longer ok. After the seizure I changed I no longer would talk or interact with anyone and everyone was pretty scared. Before the seizure I would answer questions like who people were and the date? I swear ever five minutes someone would ask me the date. It was frustrating because I wasn’t sure if they were asking so much because I was wrong but I didn’t get why they couldn’t just look for themselves. I guess the first time I was asked by the paramedics at the apartment I got it wrong. I said it was 2008 but after that I usually knew. I have no memories around the seizure and for awhile after that. I believe that the seizure is why I can remember the first part of being in the hospital but not the week after that.
After a couple days when the physical therapists were working on my legs and my sister Trisha noticed that my ankle was swollen and blue. They took me for an x-ray and it was broken. I think I remember hearing it break but because I had no pain sensation I could tell no one what I heard and couldn’t feel it to know something was wrong. No one else noticed. I have vague memories of seeing my parents but no real memories. I guess lots of people were around my family and Blake’s but I have no memory of anyone. So if you were there thanks. I went from the emergency room to Critical care and then to intermediate care which is where I begin to have memories. Then I was moved to the inpatient rehab floor. This is where I spent the next three weeks. It was rough being in the hospital for so long but it was where I needed to be to get strong enough to come home. I missed Isabella. She came to visit everyday but I was use to spending ten or more hours with her a day so seeing her for 30 minutes or an hour was never enough. I was lonely a lot and because I was in a hospital 40 minutes away from most of my family people couldn’t be there most of the time. I know everyone tried to be there when they could but I missed everyone when I was alone. I got to come home on March 2nd. Exactly one month after I went in to the hospital.