Persistence, Not Pressure

Persistence is very important in stroke recovery.   To support our recoveries, we have to be motivated, really want to recover and work hard consistently over the long term.   Our brains and bodies must know that recovery matters to us and that we will continue to pay attention to helping ourselves.  Setting goals, making schedules, making commitments to ourselves and keeping them – all of this makes a big difference.

Persistence is not the same thing as pressure, however.  Continue reading

Hope and Expectations

morning mountains in mist

Many times when I give a talk to clinicians I am asked the heartfelt question, “What do I tell patients and family members?  I don’t want to give them ‘false hope.’” These clinicians care about us.  They don’t want to add to our suffering. They want to encourage us and often they truly don’t know what to say.

Is there such a thing as “false hope?”  I don’t think so.   Continue reading

Turning Towards

The other day I was talking to a delightful six-year old. He was telling me that the bread I had given him with his dinner was crunchy.   I explained to him that when I was in the kitchen with his mother I was having such an interesting conversation with her that I had forgotten about the bread and left it in the oven too long. Grinning up at me with that irrepressible smile of his, he said, “Is my mama to blame?” I said, “No. No one’s to blame.” He said, “Are you to blame?”   I said, “No. No one’s to blame.” Then he said with a twinkle in his eye, “Then the oven’s to blame!” Continue reading