Starting October 25 of 2011, "InfertilityMom," 39-year-old Jennifer Saake (founder of Hannah's Prayer Ministries), experienced 6 strokes, all due to vertebral dissection at a chiropractic office. The largest two strokes were brain stem and cerebellum bleeds. Jenni remained hospitalized until nearly Christmas 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 (please read more and watch short video). Jenni is now walking (with a cane or wheeled walker), has recovered much eye-sight, some hearing, partial use of her hands, cares for most of her own personal/toiletry needs, and is currently writing three books, maintains multiple blogs, and stays active on both Facebook and Pinterest. Near the five-year recovery mark, Jenni has renewed her pre-stroke excitement about the unique Lilla Rose hair Flexi eight jewelry she sells and has finally regained enough hand/arm function to regularly use! (The biggest ongoing losses at the 4 1/2-year point of recovery are left-side nerve pain, inability to drive, loss of homeschool teaching capability, significant sound processing issues (often triggering nausea), and some profound physical ability limitations such as a limp, balance challenges, clumsy use of right hand and only large motor function in left hand.) Here is her resume.

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 equipts you to send any monetary assistance as well, this is a significant added blessing.

Jenni is clinging to God's grace through the entire experience. Here is her unfolding story, documented in her own words (typing with only her right hand), as she perceives it happening in real time, messy, honest and to the glory of God...

Friday, May 17, 2013

Down She Goes...


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I was back in my bedroom alone this morning. The kids were at the other end of the house and my door was closed because I went back to get dressed, so there was no way for our kids to hear me.

I got off balance trying to reach for an article of clothing just outside my (very small) center of gravity. It was like slow motion. I could feel and process what was happening, but my best efforts could do nothing to stop the process.

I reached out and grabbed for anything I could grasp. In this case the closest things were my skirts which slowed my fall a little, but I managed to yank right off of the skirt hanger. I literally heard myself say, in resignation, "Down she goes!" when there was nothing I could do to stop the drama from unfolding.

I landed, kerp-lunk, down on my shoe rack. Everything froze until the shoe box under me started to crumple and I fell several more inches, bit my bit, to the floor as the box continued to collapse under my weight, reminiscent of when I landed on a plastic "milk crate" style file box in the office and broke it in jagged, piercing stages, a few weeks ago.

I wasn't really hurt this time. A few stubbed fingers and toes and a couple bruises and scratches, but nothing significant. The interesting thing came when I tried to get back up off the floor. I found myself rather stranded, with no solid hand holds anywhere in reach and my legs too crumpled under me to be able to untangle them in the cramped confines of the closet.

After struggling for well over 5 minutes, I was afraid I would have to push my emergency call button, not for any kind of medical emergency, but simply because I was so stuck and unable to resolve issues on my own. I figured, if nothing else, the alarm would notify my kids to come running (though the only way they could have helped was by bringing my walker so I could have used it to pull up on), and canceled the medical call if I was no longer stuck by the time the operator spoke to me through the call panel.

The thing that kept me from doing so was the knowledge that my parents were coming to take me to the gym in half an hour. I figured, worst case, my mom would come into the house, come to check on me back in the bedroom, and find me still sitting in the closet in my nightshirt. We would likely miss our workout, but at least she would help me off the floor.

After about 10 minutes of struggle, I was able to squeeze my fingers of my right hand behind a metal panel screwed to the closet wall and hook my left hand into the door jar hardware. This gave me enough leverage to get up on my stronger knee. I then placed the palms of both hands on oposing wall, and push myself upright once again.



With only about 15 minutes left (it would have taken me longer than that to get my clothes on when I started dressing myself), I was dressed and ready to head out the door when my parents got here! :)
When I said, “My foot is slipping,” your unfailing love, Lord, supported me. - Psalm 94:18

3 comments:

  1. Oh no! One of my biggest fears is a fall while getting out of the shower.

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  2. Yep, you were up, dressed and waiting for us! That work out in the pool wore me out, and you were still stressed from the fall. I hope you got a good nap this afternoon!

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  3. Sorry you fell, but glad you are ok.

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