I forget a whole lot about those first 6 months after the stroke, it’s insanely blurry but last week I was reminded of something that even at the time when it happened I remember thinking that it was hilarious and I also remember thinking “why in Sam Hell did that just happen?” What does that expression mean? Sam Hell. I was in physical therapy a few months after stroke day and she had me doing an exercise where I had to grab cones. It took me literally like 5 minutes to grab one cone and it was so frustrating that I wanted to scream but also couldn’t scream at the time and I just wanted to kill everyone. So I was doing this exercise and concentrating like hell on grabbing these stupid ass cones and I was so angry inside and I said “shut up.” That was not directed in any way at my therapist. I loved her. She hadn’t even said anything. I don’t even know why that came out of my mouth. I can’t believe I’ve never written about this before, I laughed about this for months. I said “shut up” out of nowhere and my PT said “did you just say shut up?” and looked bewildered. You’d think a PT that works in neuro rehab would be used to her brain-damaged patients saying all kinds of meaningless, weird stuff but who knows?
I’m telling you, I had ZERO control over what came out of my mouth, zero. Sometimes what I said didn’t even closely resemble what was in my head and sometimes things would come out of my mouth that – just came out. I wasn’t even planning to say anything but my mouth and vocal cords had a mind of their own. Now they match up, I think. I hope they do.