The Latest from MeiLin

  • Posted on: 20 July 2015
  • By: MeiLin

In case you missed it on Facebook. I don't really like it there, but my friends insist on hanging out there.

It's been nearly nine months since the stroke that nearly killed me. And so, a status report, in response to my husband's questions. Those who only do good news, scroll down.

How are you doing?

I am stronger than before, with limits.

The limits:

I went for my final examinations for Social Security Disability, and the 99% chance I'd be approved went poof. We Are the 1%! Oh well, that's why they made an appeals process. It's been thirteen years I've been trying to win approval now; at some point, they'll have to give in. I cannot work, even before I had the stroke. In the past, I have had either no one [legal] on my side, or [legal] hacks.* This time, I have someone on my side who truly understands the process, and I'm optimistic. I won't give up.

I'm still stroke-affected. My right hand is much, much better, which is only saying so much. My right leg works now; I couldn't move it at all--not a fraction of an inch. That said, they remain difficult.

My balance is still bad. I have a hard time standing in one place for any long period (over five minutes). The balance issues extend even into sitting; with no opportunity to rest, the room just swims. If I sit quietly, the issue goes away. The problem is with my right eye; it doesn't move as my left eye does, and the result is double vision/diplopia. The neuro-opthamologist says it's definitely neurological, not physical. Not great news, since there's only so much that can be done.

The strengths:

The balance issues may resolve given time. It has definitely gotten better since the stroke. I am now walking with a cane, sometimes unassisted (though usually I rely on help). In environments which are familiar, like the house we're in, I walk without either assistance or a cane. Most of the time, it's fine. Sometimes, it's not, but my "you will NOT fall" record is intact--at least since leaving the hospital. I credit my physical therapist, Jordan at Therapeutic Associates. He's AMAZING, as is Debra from Connected and the crew at Care Center East, especially Karen. Blessings on them.

My speech is very nearly intact. As long as I'm not over-tired, I'm fine (part of the finding of the SSA people, a part I agree with). My wits are what they were. I'm able to concentrate past the balance issues to communicate. For the most part, that's enough. Missing is the ability to write fiction. It's just not there. I haven't the heart yet.

What could you use going forward?

VISITS. I know most of you don't have time, but for those who do, I'm lonely. Any time: evenings, weekends, daytime. It's hard but not impossible for me to get places. I am fairly normal, not at all difficult to visit. I wear an eyepatch over one eye, I walk funny, and my hair is quite short, but otherwise I am the same. Please call or write first.

We still accept dinners. John tires of cooking, and I'm still not much in the kitchen apart from super-simple main courses. T'ain't critical, but it helps.

What has been an amazing surprise for you?

THE ENTIRE EXPERIENCE. From the fire through the stroke, I have been continuously astonished--FLOORED--by the outpouring of love, caring, and materials our friends and coworkers have given us. Blessings, BLESSINGS, on all of you!!


* Note: I (JJ) added the legal note to clarify after discussing with Lynn. This was directed at the legal profession, NOT our friends.


sarianna's picture


It's good to hear from you yourself, Mei. Much much love. Wish I were closer to help out. And as someone who acquired double vision and has been living with it for the past 25 years... eventually, you just get used to it. That part will get better. <3

MeiLin's picture

Most High

Seriously, it's good to know that others have lived with these issues.

Pikachu42's picture


I'm really happy to hear you're doing better. Smile Wish I was closer so I could help.

Gudy's picture


... what Pikachu said.


Steven Tryon's picture

Hang in there, MeiLin. You matter.

Becca Mills's picture

It's great to hear your update, MeiLin! You've had such a tough row to hoe, and yet you sound fantastic. Sending every good wish in the world. Drop back by Kboards when you have the time, energy, and interest, okay? We want you back. Smile

Clare-Dragonfly's picture


I wish I could come visit. Keep working on it and I know you'll get better!

And best wishes for getting disability. How they could deny you I don't understand.

Sean's picture

We can listen at least if not do anything more helpful.

There is a fable that Solon travelled to Sardis and met Croesus on his travels. Croesus asked him who was the happiest man he had seen. Solon declared that it was Tellus of Athens, who had fathered respectable sons and seen them have sons who lived, earned a respectable income, and died gloriously winning a battle against Megara. Croesus frowned and asked who was the second-happiest. Solon answered that it was Cleobis and Biton of Argos who earned sufficient incomes, performed great athletic feats, then died suddenly in their youth. Croesus demanded to know why Solon rated his happiness less than that of some hick commoners. Solon replied that the divine is jealous and confounds the works of men, and that a rich man may not be lucky, so it is best not to call anyone happy while they live and are subject to fortune. Croesus did not believe Solon, but everyone knows how his story ended.

I wish I had the art to say more. But its fortune's wheel, not fortune's slip-and-slide. What is low becomes high just as what is high becomes low.

Raigne's picture


It always seems like the people who need assistance the most get denied it. I have no doubt in my mind that if my mother had not had a physical disability (by way of a chunk of metal and plastic where her right knee should be) to go along with her mental ones she'd have been denied too.

Glad to hear that you're still making progress.

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