My reason for preventing stroke? We are born to be happy!

I’m Madalena Viana from Portugal and unfortunately I have in my care, two very close family members that are stroke victims.

The first one was my husband, Manuel Viana, in 2007, who was 60 years old when he suffered a haemorrhagic stroke.  Nothing led us to believe that this would happen, since he had a life that we could say that was HEALTHY. He never had high blood pressure, nor high cholesterol, he didn’t drink, or smoke in excess, he walked a lot, he took routine medical tests, ultimately… there were no risk factors.

But on that Sunday, after we spent a nice day, it was himself that realised that he was having a stroke. It started by numbing his left hand’s index finger and thumb, coming then up to the arm. He still climbed 15 stairs to call my sons-in-law. They were the ones that immediately took him to the Hospital. This process didn’t last more than 5 minutes, because we live very close to it. It was at the hospital that his left side paralysed.

When he became aware of the serious situation that he was in, I remember the shocking sentence he said: “I’m an invalid!” My work started here. In that moment there was nothing I could do besides cheering him up. Tell him to be calm, that everything was going to be OK, that I was by his side… 

After the stroke, our life took a 180 degrees turn. Manuel didn’t accept what happened, since he was a very active man and he was very good at fixing anything that was needed at home. Me… I had to take care of so many things that my husband used to do and dedicate myself to him. Today he still isn’t independent. It was the end of tours, holidays, projects, joy. Everything turned into struggle, with faith and tenacity.

The second victim was my daughter (Gisela Viana) in 2014, at the age of 36.  On a Sunday (just like had happened with her father), when she was at home with her husband and also without any risk factor, unexpectedly... she fainted. It was her husband who realized that Gisela was having a stroke and called 112.

My daughter had a clot to the right carotid wall that caused the stroke. She was paralyzed on the left side, her memory was affected, her speech, her writing, her mouth dropped to one side and she had an almost closed eyelid. (I find it very difficult to remember these times of anguish).

Before the stroke, Gisela was a healthy young woman, very active, with a world full of projects, happy and, as I mentioned, without any known risk factors. After her stroke everything changed!
The day she left the hospital (continued care) she was extremely happy to return home. Her husband brought her to my house and he went to their place. And he immediately filed for the divorce. 

Then Gisela thought it was the end of the world. She had lost everything! He had already lost her health, lost her house, and some of her possessions and even some friends. It was hard, very hard not only for her (the main victim) but also for us family.

Today she is a fighter. She is a Winning Warrior. She has fought and she has won, although she has still a long road before her, because a stroke takes seconds to happen, but its recovery takes years! ...
I do what I can, I do what I think it’s is best for my beloved ones and, if God gives me health and strength, I will continue to take care of those who need me. I´ll walk with them towards victory.

These were two cases of strokes which had no-risk factors associated. However, many are caused by a lack of information or health care. They happen because of poor diet, excessive alcohol, sedentary life, lack of medical tests, stress and so many other factors.

Please think of your health, think of those who love you. Only those who have gone through or saw their relatives go through "this", know that life can change radically from on moment to another.


Take care of yourselves, beware while you have the chance because we are born to be happy.



My reason for preventing stroke? We are born to be happy! Reviewed by Anita Wiseman on Tuesday, October 03, 2017 Rating: 5

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