I was reading Ask A Manager and there’s a question about COVID, working from home, children, and more. The context was a letter writer who moved during the pandemic and now was unhappy as to be asked to go back to the office. The comment in question is from someone who had a stroke at the beginning of this year and can’t drive any more.
It got me thinking about my own stroke (which I rarely even think about unless I’m thinking about my medical trauma in general). I felt guilty reading this comment because, well, it should be obvious why. This person had a stroke and can never drive again. They can only type with one hand and they can’t work in an office again.
Me, on the other hand, was never forbidden to drive except for a few days after having my angiogram (and I was in the hospital, anyway). In fact, it was deeply funny to me (in a dark way) that while my parents were warring over my father’s ability to drive (very poor) and my mother’s ability to drive (problematic), the person most capable of driving was the one who had non-COVID-related walking pneumonia, two cardiac arrests, and a stroke.
I have slight memory issues, but nothing to complain about. Plus, I have a workaround that isn’t difficult (writing things down) and I feel blessed that I can still type 100+ words a minute. My eyesight is back to where it was before the medical trauma (poor), no longer blurry. I had no rehab. None.
While I was in the hospital, I talked to the chaplain. I made it clear that I was not a believer, which did not faze him at all. I told him that I didn’t question why the medical trauma happened to me. I don’t take the best care of myself and I have bronchial issues. I’m not special and exempt from bad things happening to me. I’ve never questioned that. But the fact that I came back without a scratch? That eats at me from time to time. Why the hell was I so lucky when others have suffered so much?
I should be dead. There is no way I should have survived what happened to me. When I Google similar situations, I come up with nothing because there is just no parallel. When I tried to find a support group for people who had gone through what I had, I couldn’t find any. Not even any who had just survived cardiac arrests with no lasting effects.
I am called a walking/living/literal miracle every time I mention what happened to me. People who are in the medical biz just are amazed that I survived what happened to me, let alone thrived. People not in the medical field are floored when I tell them. I’m not bragging or even humble-bragging when I say that I am one of a kind. I have done hours of research and cannot find anything even close to what I went through.
I should be dead. I don’t think I can overstate that. I should not be here.