Do Not Lose Hope When The ‘Tempest in the Teapot’ — Stroke Strikes A Loved One
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Do Not Lose Hope When The ‘Tempest in the Teapot’ — Stroke Strikes A Loved One

Apart from hearty touches of humour, perhaps give the loved One that little, private space to rest (from all the medical interventions) and be himself, then afterwards speak softly about the reason why physical therapy (and getting him off the bed and up and about, already hard as it seems) is important (to help him with his recovery and avoid problems arising from muscle wasting and limb/joint stiffening; and depression that can follow), for instance. 

By patiently, gradually and clearly explaining the pros and cons of doing or not doing certain essential things, you are helping empower your loved one to have an informed choice, despite his current limitations which can be overcome with perseverance, over time. Expressions of anger and frustration are part of being human and part of recovering from unfortunate incidents, so do not let that overwhelm all of you and distract you all from what you need to do— go beyond these. Make the ‘tempest in the teapot’ whistle away by not caulking or sealing it, but making sense of what’s behind the prickly ‘whistles'. Let him know that he is loved and valued; and despite all the odds you will all walk and work with him through hell and high water till he gets much better and hopefully recovers from his ordeal. He will require lots and lots of reassurance, love and understanding. 

Let him see the rising of the sun and feel the healing touch of the garden and all that Nature can give to cheer him up and push him to change for the better. Sing with him, read with him, tell him the most hilarious, inspiring and beautiful life and family stories, recite inspiring poems and poems of fortitude, hope and courage, play music that he loves and regularly let him be with or be in touch lots and lots of good company, especially his friends and those very close to him. Use today’s social and communications technology also to help make it virtually possible or more practicable for them to regularly get in touch with each other if needed or desired. If possible, let him be (or work hard towards that end— in fact, use it as a delicious incentive for him to overcome his limitations, helplessness, hopelessness-- and being bed-ridden) in familiar homely surroundings and not just in some cheerless, drab, and suffocating hospital room. Give him that feel good ‘C’est la Vie’! :D … Yes he will need rest in between; but the point is creatively organised social, physical and intellectual stimulation can also help his mind and body mend and avoid the bottomless, dark and dangerous pit of depression...

Lots of empathy would be required. Put yourself in his shoes to help understand and anticipate his fluid or constantly changing physical and psycho-social needs, etc. (as his mind and body slowly finds its way to recover, rebuild or rewire) and create solutions, even improvise if need be. It is not just about cold clinical or medical interventions, it is about the warmth of the human touch and inspiring, soothing voices, too, to cheer him up as he undergoes that long, complex, at times lonely, very hard, extremely painful recovery. Focus, Help him FOCUS... Hope this helps you all. What may appear as simple, natural things and simple actions, may actually be the most potent, practical, meaningful and worthwhile solutions. All the best and do not lose hope… For when the day comes when you have all overcome these ‘marathon’ of woes, you will look back and begin to appreciate and cherish what ‘Love Beyond Words’ actually means…— jr

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