Going back to the very beginning of this journey, way before returning to uni, going to glastonbury or even taking my first post stroke steps, you might remember that after I collapsed as I was crawling to the bin to try and pull myself back up two policemen pulled over to help me. If they hadn’t drove past I can honestly say I have no idea what would have happened, and worst case scenario well…maybe lets not go there.
Since it happened I have wished that I could remember what the two policemen looked like so I could stop wondering if every policeman I walked past were the ones who had helped to save my life. Today I had the absolute pleasure of meeting them. Stuart and Steve Brown (not related) were just like I had hoped they would be, friendly and caring they wanted to know everything that had happened after that day, how long was i in hospital, did I know why it happened, how did it affect me, what happens next. It was a totally emotional experience for me and I began crying when Stuart asked what I could remember and I said I recalled people walking past me and that (as i said) if they hadnt of pulled over it could have been so much worse. After a few minutes I was OK again and we carried on talking.
What shocked me the most was although I remembered more than they thought I would, some bits that I remebered were very different to how they remembered it and lets face it, their version was probably right!! From my memory I was quite coherent, answering their questions and feeling quite tired, the only thing I can remember not being able to say was ‘Urban Outfitters’ and I remember being determined for them to take me to work. In Stuarts memory, very little of what I said was coherent and telling him where I worked was one of the only things he could remember me saying. Steve wasn’t so sure and thinks that they found out were I worked by finding my work badge. It was over a year ago so it’s bound to be a bit hazy for everyone. One thing I asked (before Steve got there) was whether whilst talking to me they realised that I was having a stroke. Stuart said he had thought it but wasn’t sure because of my age but knew it was something serious. For any new readers heres 4 easy steps to recognising a stroke
F - Face, (weakness) has one side of the face drooped
A - Arms - are they having difficulty raising their arms
S - Speech - Has there speech become slurred? Like they’re suddently Drunk
T - Time - to call an ambulance.
so remember to act fast and strokes can happen to anyone at any age (even babies!)
Whilst this was ridiculously emotional for me, I think it meant alot for them too, they told me they never really get to follow up how people are doing and seemed really pleased that I was so keen to meet them so that they could see how I was getting on. They also asked me if they could have done anything differently but I honestly don’t think they could have, they made me feel really calm, reacted quickly and although they asked if I was drunk or on drugs, I understand that I was outside a pub and that for someone my age it would be what first goes through anyones head and is probably why people walkd past me. I explained some stroke facts and how there is a drug that could be administered within 3 hours so that you have to act fast but they acted so quickly anyway there is nothing that I wish they’d have done differently. Their reactions have helped me to recover as much as I have and I am so so thanful to have finally met them today!!