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Hi! My name’s Rosalia. HHhhmmmm, what should I tell you? I’m only 38 years old. Life has thrown me plenty of curve balls. One of the curviest ones tossed my way was February 27, 2014, when I suffered two full blown strokes. It was a bit of a freak accident. I was completely healthy beyond text book healthy before the strokes. The strokes were brought on by me slipping on ice on my walkway, and hitting the back of my head, some time a month before. It wasn’t a major fall that made me think “let me get checked out”. It was a fall that I brushed myself off of, rolled my eyes, and got annoyed every time my mom and stepfather (both whom I reside with) pestered me; “Don’t fall asleep”, “Get checked out”, Etc. “Leave me alone”, I thought.
It was just after the holidays. I graduated Fordham University Graduate School for Social Work the Summer before and passed my licensing exam for social work in November 2013. I wasn’t working as of yet, just enjoying my freedom and the holidays.
About the time I fell, I should’ve gotten checked out. The fall was enough to sever/tear my spine in my neck area, causing a slow bleed in my brain. How was I supposed to know that though? I wasn’t working as of yet (planned to). Since I wasn’t working, I had no medical insurance, so I couldn’t get checked out without paying an arm and a leg. But I thought to myself, “who has that kind of money, not me”. I reassured myself, “It’s nothing, I’ll be okay”. How wrong I was.
Quickly I’ll go into what happened to me because I can spend pages amongst pages telling you, reliving it, going through all the “what ifs?”. That’s absurd, why would I do that to us? The fall caused a brain bleed, a hemorrhagic stroke, and then an ischemic stroke, both a month later. I was healthy as an ox (still am). I was very athletic (still sort of am but not to that extreme). I was a Recreation Director. When I had both strokes, it effected the left and the right cerebellum, thus effecting my speech (one of the many things I lost, and still to this day, I lost the pitch to my voice), my balance, and coordination. The strokes effected my lifestyle drastically, where I had to put up a fight to live. And that I did, I relearned EVERYTHING. When I say everything, I mean everything; how to walk, talk, eat, drink, drive, shave, cook, the list goes on and on.
Is life worth the curve balls? Especially this? Y-E-S Is it worth the fight? Y-E-S Am I Worth It? Y-E-S Are you worth It? I know my answer, what’s yours? Hopefully It’s three letters, and if not, not right now, but hopefully you’ll have a change of heart. (To Be Continued…) Have a beautiful day. I’m honored to still be alive and meet all of you. Be well, until next time we meet again.