Sunday, March 8, 2009


I have to admit to feeling very conflicted about being alone while Jim was on his adventure in Vietnam with our daughter.

One minute I was excited about being on my own for the first time in my life, the next minute I was full of anxiety about being left alone and not knowing how I would function. That may sound extreme, but since my stroke, there are many 'activities of daily living' (as the medical profession calls them) that can be a challenge for me.

We had considered many alternatives for my safety, including, going to a relative's or friend's house or having someone come here (thanks for all the gracious offers). I even thought about going on a cruise where meals, room, entertainment, even a doctor/medical clinic are available. Don't laugh,there are some incredible deals for cruises as low as $42 per day; a fraction of assistive living costs.

I am so glad we moved to our retirement community when we did. The house is built for 'aging in place' and has many of the safety features that I now appreciate - things like hand rails in the shower and taller toilets. When we first moved in, I could not believe how many beeps, tones, buzzes and alarms there were in our house. There would be a beep when a door opened. The stove beeps at setting changes or if left unattended. The dishwasher beeps. The refrigerator chimes if a door is ajar. The very sounds I thought I might find annoying were a comfort to me these last couple of weeks.

I have always felt strong and in control of my life - until the stroke.
I am trying desperately to regain that feeling. Daily, I do several hours of cognitive therapy (which includes this blog). I had to put my ego aside to use whatever assistive devices make my life easier; service dog, cane, prism glasses, tricycle for transportation, strangers kind offers of help, and handicapped public access features. Thank God for the American Disabilities Act(ADA).

I DID IT! I stayed alone and enjoyed recovering more independence. I got to know my (new)self a little better and I didn't burn the house down!

Okay, there was that one morning, at 6:00am, when I let the dogs out the patio door without first turning off the security alarm. But hey, I got to know a few more of our neighbors ;)


  1. Hey Darcie, Great start to your blog. You and Vickie are so smart on figuring out how to do all this stuff!!! I wish I had half the smarts you 2 ladies do. Keep up the great work. Give Baily a nice pat from me!!

  2. I couldn't figure out how to sign in so I became "anonymous" lol Karen Palmer

  3. Recovering independence is a HUGE milestone!

  4. Darcie,
    This blog may be cognitive therapy for you, for us, the readers, it's a window into your world and your perseverence. You're getting better and better with each passing month.

    It's an honor for us to be invited to view the journey and to cheer you on.