I recently read an amazing book entitled “My Stroke of Insight” by Jill Bolte-Taylor, Ph.D. Over a couple of weeks, several colleagues and friends kept recommending this book to me. Because so many were recommending it, I grabbed a copy. The book chronicles the experiences of a highly respected brain scientist who herself suffers a massive stroke affecting most of the left side of her brain. Even as the author’s capacity for language, her sense of self (ego) is slipping away, and her brain injury (stroke) progresses, she is able to become an inside observer of all she had spent her life and career to study. Despite the gravity of her physical condition, she finds herself in a blissful, peaceful and expansive “right brain” place. Her description is a spiritual journey which teaches her (and us) about being human.
This book should be read by all for its’ journey of hope and resiliency. It should also be read to teach and recognize (and act!) on the signs of a stroke:
S = SPEECH, or any problems with language
T = TINGLING, or any numbness in the body
R = REMEMBER, or any problems with memory
O = OFF BALANCE, problems with coordination
K = KILLER HEADACHE
E = EYES, or any problem with vision