A stroke gets her to the top of blog list

Marilyn Sherman

Marilyn Sherman: Leasider, avid gardener, former occupational health nurse manager, wife, mother… and now a stroke thriver blogger with almost 40,000 hits from around the world.

In fact her blogs are the top of the list if you Google stroke thrivers. A stroke thriver is one who thrives despite the stroke.

Sherman had her stroke in January 2005 and got to the hospital too late for clot busting drugs. Her right side became paralyzed.

As an out-patient and then a volunteer at the Rumsey Neuro Centre in Leaside she learned that, “Most importantly, stroke people need to see another stroke thriver— even just seeing another thriver is important.”

Marilyn wants people to know, “You can have a full and happy life after a stroke.” That’s why she started her blog in 2010.

She writes, “Through this blog I hope to provide one way to obtain information and a means for stroke thrivers to communicate with each other. I encourage you to write about your own experiences and pass along your tips for survival.”

Also from her blog: “One thing that has become evident to me over time, is that there are few means for stroke survivors to access information about stroke issues once they have left the hospital. As we all know, stroke recovery is fluid and changes over time, making ongoing access to the latest information about stroke a real need.” http://strokethrivers.blogspot.ca

The following is an article she sent to Fine Gardening Magazine:

“Several years ago my husband Ian and I moved into a small house on a corner lot with a tiny front yard and a lawn surrounded by a chain link fence. We removed the grass and the fence and replaced them with a mixed perennial and shrub garden.

“Then, in 2005 at age 52, I suffered a severe right-sided stroke and lost the use of the right side of my body. I was determined to return to gardening after my stroke, and bit by bit regained my strength and balance by doing more and more gardening jobs.

“At first I could only sit on a small tractor and pull a few weeds, I tired very easily.

“I began to think of creative ways to help me function in the garden.

“Today I can do most any chore including transplanting, staking, and dressing the beds with compost. I use the old chain link posts, painted black so as to be less visible, to hold on to when I garden deeper into the beds.

“When I have to go farther then the posts allow I use an old ski pole with the basket removed as a gardening cane.”

The editor answered:

“Wow. Marilyn, I don’t know if I could have been as strong and determined as you’ve been, and so incredibly successful at what you love to do. Amazing, and so inspirational. Thank so much for sharing your story and your garden with us!”