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How old were you when you had your stroke? 13

  • Date of your stroke? 7/31/2010
  • What general area do you live in?  Outer Banks NC
  • Type of Stroke? AVM ( ArterioVenous Malformation )
  • Any known reasons for your stroke? AVM
  • What were your symptoms? What were you feeling during your stroke? Tell us the story of what happened. I had a small bleed originally….light sensitive, nausea, and left side paralysis.
  • Were you administered TPA (Tissue Plasminogen Activator) within the first 3-5 hours of your stroke? Don’t know what that is.
  • Where did you go for inpatient rehab? Kings Daughters Children’s Hospital Norfolk, VA
  • Where did you go for outpatient rehab?Kings Daughters Children’s Hospital Norfolk, VA
What are your biggest challenges/residual effects?

I have apraxia aphasia, total left side paralysis, and sometimes earlier I had seizures.

Post recovery, what is something you have learned that might encourage others?

 I just knew I could not give up…I had been in a coma for months…I was scared not to try…My mother and father and sister were there for me….my faith was what I had. I have now graduated from high school…learning to drive….I am very lonely…we live on an island and I was so active and involved in everything.

What advice would you give someone recovering from a stroke now?

Never give up hope…know that God has a big plan for you even if you can not see it…more will be revealed if you keep doing the next right thing no matter how hard it may be.

What keeps you motivated now?

 I am encouraged by my sister and my mother…I have a few friends but I want to keep going to inspire others to never ever give up…they said I would not learn or walk without an AFO… they said I would always have my arm in a sling…none of that is true. I haven’t figured out what to do that’s new…my paralysis limits me.

Never give up hope…know that God has a big plan for you even if you can not see it.

What is something quirky/fun about yourself? 

I have a good sense of humor and I love horses and all kinds of music…my friends call me Bela.

Any other missing details to your story?

I spent months in the hospital with my skull removed…I have had such a long road to walk and I am so proud of myself now…I just started looking at the pictures recently…I have graduated with an IEP this past June and I am trying very hard to figure out how and what to do next..I am on an 21 mile island with limited resources and I am in need of information about where and what things are available for teen stroke survivors. I was tired of being alone in this and I saw the video of the four girls in Kansas city….I want to meet them so badly…I want to meet others like myself and have a normal social life…I saw this on one of the videos that was posted…

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