Update: Stroke of Grace has become In Darkness Sing and has moved to JenniferSaake.com.

Thirty-nine-year-old Jennifer Saake (founder, Hannah's Prayer Ministries), experienced 6 strokes via vertebral dissection at a chiropractic office, including brain stem and cerebellum bleeds, in Oct. 2011. Jenni remained hospitalized for nearly 2 months and was not expected to live (near death experience) nor recover, but if she even survived, she was slated to live out her days in a nursing home or, best case, to maybe come home but wheelchair-bound and needing 24-hour care. At 5 years, 7 months God showed how He was writing her story from the beginning.

Jenni is currently writing more books and stays active on both Facebook and Pinterest. Stroke of Grace became In Darkness Sing in early 2018 and has moved, along with all five of Jennifer's active blogs, to one location at JenniferSaake.com.

Since Jenni's chiropractor carried no insurance and moved out of the country soon after the accident (thus avoiding any legal or financial consequences), if you would like to help contribute to the Saake (pronounced like the two small words, say and key) family's massive financial needs (medical expenses alone are estimated to cost between $1- and $1.5- Million in Jenni's lifetime), please visit Jennifer Saake's Stroke Survivor GoFundMe Page. (This support information has been added in direct response to several reader requests.) The Saakes sincerely thank you for your prayers and if God prompts and equips you to send any monetary assistance as well, this is a significant added blessing.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Date and Hand

Rick and I had a wonderful and much-needed date night last night. The only semi fiasco came when I was chewing a nut, started to laugh and sprayed it across the table and Rick (who is allergic to said walnuts)! I started to cry, then laugh, then cry again and laugh some more. This was a super fancy restaurant, folks, and I was like a bull in a china shop.

Rick was afraid I would totally loose control of my emotions and he would have to take me home during only the salad course. I was afraid it would get really ugly too, but by God's grace, we survived (Rick, thank you for handling it all with such grace, dignity, kindness and humor) and I made it through the rest of the meal without spilling my water, setting fire to the table or anything like that

I was so nervous, it felt like a first date again. I still have much to re-learn about social graces and conducting myself in public!

I haven't gotten nearly as much writing done this week as I was hoping. I was too emotional Monday (crying) and Tuesday (laughing) to get much of anything accomplished. I spent much of yesterday editing and did very little new writing. I'm not quite sure where today has gone. I did more editing this morning, then took a 3-hour nap this afternoon. Rick works very late tonight (10 or 11 PM) and I tend to do my best writing in the evening, so I'm hopeful that once I get this posted I will be able to get at least a couple more sections written tonight. Please pray that the Holy Spirit will give me wisdom, clarity and flow through me!

The kids are scheduled to finally come home for good, tomorrow, baring any unforeseen complications! :) We did get most of their schooling supplies ordered and plan to start back up in about a month. We have a summer filled with birthday parties as I was in no shape to consider parties last winter, so we are celebrating half birthdays this year. (All three kids have birthdays within a 5-week span, with Christmas in the middle. They only have a big "friends party" every 3 years anyway, and this was the year they had all be counting down toward and waiting for, so it is a pretty big deal in our house.) Rick is a brave man to take on sleep-overs 3 weekends in a row! Then VBS.

Also scheduled to restart therapies in July. My left hand is almost always drawn to my chest now, and while it still it offers a little limited movement, it has become significantly less functional. It is now turning purple like my left foot (that continues to be paralyzed, as evidenced by a second drearily unsuccessful attempt to wear sandals out to dinner last night). Both the foot and hand are noticeably swollen and retaining fluid, though the left hand post-surgical swelling of several weeks is finally down enough to squeeze on wedding rings. I don't know how long I will be able to keep wearing them? 

My left hand typically prefers to clench into a tight first that leaves the muscles in my hand and arm aching, unless I make a conscious effort to unfurl my fingers. I sleep with a toilet paper tube in my hand to give some relief to tired muscles through the night.

If I hold anything in that hand, my hand is not willing to release again when I want to let go. I must pry it away from my left with my right, or someone else has to forceably take the item from me. I have weakened grasp when I try to hold anything, but a super grip when I try to let anything go!

I am afraid I am loosing any real, usable function of my arm. Somehow I thought the the progress I had already made by now was all for gain. I had no idea that some losses would progress with time. This ongoing loss is terribly disheartening. It is good to know that, even as my hand withers, God's hands remain mighty!

I just spoke to my behavior therapist and am to call her back in two weeks to check again on insurance approval and hopefully to be able to schedule our first session! :) Praise God!
He did this so that all the peoples of the earth might know that the hand of the LORD is powerful and so that you might always fear the LORD your God. - Joshua 4:24
For he wounds, but he also binds up; he injures, but his hands also heal. - Job 5:18
 In his hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind.- Job 12:10
Save us and help us with your right hand, that those you love may be delivered. -  Psalm 108:6
The works of his hands are faithful and just; all his precepts are trustworthy. - Psalm 111:7
Your hands made me and formed me; give me understanding to learn your commands. - Psalm 119:73
So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. -  Isaiah 41:10

Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. - 1 Peter 5:6

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