Understanding Factor V Leiden: Causes, Symptoms, and Management
Factor V Leiden, a genetic disorder affecting blood clotting, has garnered significant attention due to its potential health implications. Our comprehensive guide aims to delve into the intricate details of Factor V Leiden, encompassing its causes, symptoms, and effective management strategies.
What is Factor V Leiden?
Factor V Leiden is a hereditary condition that affects blood clotting, stemming from a mutation in the Factor V gene, leading to an increased tendency to form abnormal blood clots in veins. These clots can potentially obstruct proper blood flow, posing serious health risks.
Causes of Factor V Leiden
The primary cause of Factor V Leiden lies in a specific gene mutation that affects the protein Factor V, essential for blood clotting regulation. Individuals with this mutation have an altered Factor V protein, increasing the likelihood of blood clot formation.
Symptoms and Diagnosis
Symptoms associated with Factor V Leiden might not always manifest, making diagnosis challenging. However, individuals with the disorder might experience swelling, pain, warmth, and redness at the clot site. Diagnostic tests like genetic testing and clotting factor assays aid in confirming the condition.
Complications and Risks
Factor V Leiden raises the risk of developing deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism (PE). These complications can have severe consequences if not promptly addressed, leading to life-threatening situations.
Management and Treatment
Managing Factor V Leiden involves a multidimensional approach. This includes lifestyle modifications, such as regular exercise, maintaining a healthy weight, and avoiding smoking. Additionally, individuals might require anticoagulant medications to prevent clotting episodes.
For individuals with Factor V Leiden, preventive measures play a crucial role. This involves understanding the risk factors and adopting preventive strategies to minimize the likelihood of clot formation. Regular consultations with healthcare professionals are pivotal in managing the condition effectively.
Factor V Leiden presents challenges in its diagnosis, management, and potential complications. By understanding its intricacies, adopting preventive measures, and seeking appropriate medical guidance, individuals with this condition can effectively manage their health and reduce associated risks.
Abdul Wahed Hassan is recovering well from an Ischemic Stroke when he was 32 which was caused by a blood clotting disorder.
02:54 The first signs of stroke
13:33 Smoking cigarettes before the stroke
16:19 Dealing with spasticity
23:01 Factor V Leiden
31:27 Getting back to work after a stroke
39:03 Working while on blood thinner medication
49:15 Getting back independence
54:20 Hardest thing about having a stroke
1:03:19 Finding religion after a stroke
1:07:09 Abdul Wahed Hassan’s message
Hello, once again, everybody my book The Unexpected Way That A Stroke Became The Best Thing That Happened. A book, which is about recovery after stroke is now available for purchase on Amazon.
In the book, you will find chapters on mindset, the brain that resides in your heart. Yes, the brain that resides in your heart, as well as the brain that resides in your gut. That’s it, your gut brain.
You will also learn about the benefits and downsides of Neuroplasticity, you will learn about the benefits of getting better sleep, you’ll find out about the food you should be avoiding after stroke, you will find out about the amazing benefits you get from the smallest amount of exercise and I’m talking about small amounts of exercise.
And I’m talking about it doesn’t matter whether you’re able to walk, run, move your left side, move outside, it doesn’t matter the smallest amount of exercise even sitting is very, very beneficial. You will learn about following your heart’s desires and how that can lead to amazing things in your life.
And you will also learn about the amazing and positive benefits you get from surrounding yourself with the right people in your recovery. And you may even stumble across your life’s purpose.
Introduction – Abdul Wahed Hassan
Now, this is episode 285. And my guest today is Abdul Wahed Hassan who experienced an ischemic stroke in 2018, caused by a previously undiagnosed genetic condition called Factor V Leiden when he was just 32 years of age, man, there are way too many ways for people to experience a stroke. Abdul Wahed Hassan, welcome to the podcast.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 01:59
Thank you very much.
Thank you for being here. Tell me a little bit about what happened to you.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 02:08
In 2018, April 17 I would say, can’t remember if it was 17 or 18. It was by the end of April. But two months after my birthday, I was working on living in Dubai UAE, having my own business, a small startup. A friend of mine called me and asked me to go out for dinner.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 02:32
It was a famous chain Chili’s, I believe? Had my dinner, went back home, and went to sleep. I was living in my friend’s apartment because that time I left my previous job, I was working in construction. So went back home and just started sleeping, woke up early for the next day to go to work at my office.
The first signs of stroke
Abdul Wahed Hassan 02:54
I remember waking up I believe I talked to my mom she was in Canada for a visit to her parents, her family with my dad, and my brother lives up there. I was food poisoned when she called me. I was in Dubai and spent most of my time drinking, smoking, and eating during my free time if not doing sports.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 03:18
So I had some diarrhea and threw up, rushed to the toilet, threw up, one bath, to nap, went back up decided to see if I could just probably try to feel better trying to throw up again or get myself comfortable.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 03:34
Sat down in the toilet, everything was fine. I stood up and I was exhausted. I was like damn like this is hitting me hard, must be a bedbug. I was out of balance. Put it that way. So I started sleeping in the hallway between the toilet and the bedroom.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 03:59
I laid down there then I remembered that. I left the keys on the doormat for the cleaning lady to come in and clean the house that day. She comes once a week. I’m like you know what maybe when she comes in, just tell her to clean around.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 04:18
I’ll just stand up and just go back to bed and she can clean the rest of the apartment. I did hear the doorbell ringing and she was knocking on the door. I wasn’t able to do anything much I decided just to like just sleep.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 04:33
She’ll walk in, the keys under the doormat, she knows the drill so I wanted to yell to open the door to tell her that the kids are under the doormat. I could not hear my voice. I remember opening my mouth and trying to yell and scream.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 04:50
I remember I was drooling. I believe I was drooling because I was itchy so I felt it was wet. I wasn’t sure if I was having a stroke or not. I mean, if I was having a seizure, because you know when you have a seizure, later on, I discovered what a seizure feels like. I was able to explain it.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 05:12
It was like a white noise. Like, I can’t hear anything. It’s like it’s you know when you start to start to have that white noise. It was pretty much something similar. She walked in she saw me on the ground. She’s like, Sir, are you okay? Are you drunk? I’m like, no, I’m just tired.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 05:30
Just clean the house. And when you finish and come to the toilet, I’ll just move away. Look, it’s okay, sir. I’ll help you. About 190 kilograms. I was out of shape. I was not in good condition.
190 kilograms, 109.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 05:56
Sorry, I would say about 140. Because right now I’m 120. She’s like, sorry, I can’t move you I have to call security to help you out, I’m like okay, sure why not, they can help me. They came in, and two gentlemen in the building security walked in they were like sir we can’t did you drink too much?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 05:57
I’m like, No, I didn’t drink I just went to the toilet threw up and everything was fine. I just felt very tired. Just let me sleep, come back later. Like, no we can’t leave you like this. The security guys were not able to lift me out to put me in bed.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 06:38
They lifted me a little bit off the ground. But I wasn’t able to move my knees and my legs. They put them back on the ground. Like, we have to call an ambulance. I’m like okay. Before they called the ambulance they called two of my friends.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 06:56
I had an emergency contact at the building. One of my fries I was over the phone. He’s like, Hey, man, you sure you’re okay. I’m okay I just want to sleep it off. Just tired. A buddy of mine goes out and drinks too much together and he knows like, when I’m okay, I’m not okay on a drunk level, not a medical level.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 07:20
Like, okay, man, whatever you want, they called my other good friend. He came over to my apartment, he was my partner at my company as well at that time. He starts talking me into going to the hospital I’m like okay man it’s okay.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 07:37
It’s not okay man your face is not right. When he said that, it’s when it triggered me. I was like, You know what? Okay. The ambulance came in and started asking me too many questions. Asked if I was doing drugs, did I drink?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 07:51
I was very straightforward. I’m like, No, I just went to the toilet, threw up. Little diarrhea. It’s not the first time that has happened. So they got this machine that they roll like a pizza roll slicer with pinches on it. They asked me if I felt anything about it.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 08:12
We’re going to try to pinch you to see if you feel anything. They’re like, do you feel this? I’m like, No. Do you feel this? No. I heard over the radio that American adults possibly have strokes. Like we have to take you to the hospital. Okay, they put me on the stretcher. Once they put me on to the CT scan that big round machine. It’s when I knew shit hit the fan. Something was seriously going on.
And how old were you?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 08:47
32 right after my birthday.
So you were lucky that it was the day of the cleaning lady. That was lucky. Otherwise, you could have been there for days.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 09:04
Days. Yeah. Because my friend who I was staying over his apartment. He traveled for vacation with his cousins to Morocco very far away. So he’ll probably come back and find me lying down probably dead or rotten.
Nobody knows. Yeah. Well, that worked out well. So how long did you spend in the hospital?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 09:27
At that time, say about three weeks, three to four weeks, not more than that. My family had to fly in from Canada to see what was going on. My brother at that time was working in Qatar. And there was the sanction on Qatar from the Gulf countries. So it was very hard for him to fly directly to Qatar. So he had to fly to another country. I think it was Bahrain, Oman, and then into Dubai.
And what was the reason for the stroke? What caused the underlying reason
Abdul Wahed Hassan 09:59
I remember very much that day, not that day. But that month at first they couldn’t find out what was the reason for the stroke. One of my friends always knew that my eating habits were not healthy. And the way I drank alcohol was very abusive, and not healthy. He is one of the nurses. He’s like, there was probably a weekend like this, his clothes are high. Is that what the reason is? Because like, one of the nurses was like his glasses, not that high to have a stroke.
Your weight was 140 kilos, so about 300 pounds at that weight. Have you been at that weight for a long time? Was that your normal weight?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 10:43
No, that was for a while, I would say for about seven years. I was seven years in Dubai since I was like probably 21 years old, up until I was 30. I was in Dubai since I wanted to buy from 2009 to 2018. Right, my weight was pretty much stable. Probably it was less. But with my mild depression and anxiety that I went through that period. Everything pretty much triggered everything. I was a heavy smoker as well.
So did you use substances and food as a way to try and regulate your anxiety?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 11:25
Pretty much food coffee? Yes. And then cigarettes.
So there were a lot of things that you were doing that weren’t supporting your health and well-being anyway. But yeah. But 32 the stroke was not related to high cholesterol or high blood pressure or anything like that.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 11:47
No, I never had high blood pressure. Never had diabetes or any sugar problem. I was doing this for about a year, I joined a gym in Dubai, it was a boxing gym, with intense cardio therapy, intense cardio for about 40 minutes, and then another 40 minutes of boxing combination. That was probably the best thing that I went through at that time. And I believe when I started that gym, I stopped smoking cold turkey.
How long have you been without cigarettes?
If you’ve had a stroke, and you’re in recovery, you’ll know what a scary and confusing time it can be, you’re likely to have a lot of questions going through your mind. How long will it take to recover? Will I recover? What things should I avoid? In case I make matters worse, doctors will explain things.
But, if you’ve never had a stroke before, you probably don’t know what questions to ask. If this is you, you may be missing out on doing things that could help speed up your recovery. If you’re finding yourself in that situation, stop worrying, and head to recoveryafterstroke.com where you can download a guide that will help you it’s called Seven Questions to Ask Your Doctor about your Stroke.
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Abdul Wahed Hassan 13:27
I struggled before that.
Before the stroke, how long had it been?
Abdul Wahed Hassan smoking cigarettes before the stroke
Abdul Wahed Hassan 13:33
Before the stroke? I was smoking since pretty much in college when I was like probably 19 for about five, or six good years. I was on and off. But at the end of it right before my stroke, I was a heavy smoker. Reach up to two packs of cigarettes a day.
But then you started the gym?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 13:54
When I started the gym, two years before my stroke, I stopped cigarettes. Yeah.
Okay, so you weren’t smoking for two years before the stroke. And then you had the stroke. And then you stayed in the hospital when you left the hospital? What was it like?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 14:12
When I left the hospital I did not leave it. I stayed in the country. My parents came. I’m originally from Lebanon. But my parents and everyone suggested that I should go to Lebanon from the hospital.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 14:26
It’s better treatment Dubai was not very accommodating to me in my condition at that time. And I was online and didn’t have very much financial power to get treatment there and move on. There’s my parents sort of took me to Lebanon to Beirut, where there was physical therapy and rehab for stroke patients.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 14:57
I was there for about I’d say about a month and a half, about good eight weeks, I stayed they’re doing all kinds of tests to see what was going on with me couldn’t find anything. But there was a paper that said, we’re going to take a sample of your blood and send it to Europe to see if there is anything wrong there.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 15:26
The paper did say Factor V Leiden, which is the blood clot disorder. But the doctors didn’t take it very seriously at that time. They just looked at it and ignored it pretty much. So I left the hospital and then six months after that, I was trying to go through various kinds of rehabilitation.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 15:51
I did go to Germany twice. One for my occupational therapy and one for physical therapy. didn’t benefit too much because my spasms were too severe. There was a doctor and in Lebanon, when she looked at my condition, she refused to work on me. She’s like, your spasm is way too severe, she wasn’t able to.
What do you mean by spasm?
Abdul Wahed Hassan dealing with spasticity
Abdul Wahed Hassan 16:19
Yeah, we’re about is that spasticity?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 16:23
Yeah, my arm.
Which side left or right?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 16:26
And is it still like that now?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 16:31
It’s not as severe as it used to be, but it’s gone. Almost, not really. It’s still spasm. I get spasticity. I can’t move my arm. I haven’t moved it since my stroke.
Okay. And do you feel that the care that you were hoping to get in Dubai wasn’t available to you? Because you weren’t a local? And also maybe because you didn’t have insurance? Why do you feel like there wasn’t enough care?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 17:02
It wasn’t my decision at that time in Dubai, I wasn’t able to make any decisions on myself. So in Lebanon, pretty much my parents tried to assist me with physical rehab and treatments and everything up until nine months after my stroke.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 17:21
Started feeling like abdominal pain. I remember my cousin came over for a visit, took me out for sushi, and came back home. And then suddenly, I feel like something is wrong with my stomach. Thought it was a bug or flu or something.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 17:37
It kind of scared me because it reminded me of my stroke in Dubai, it was right after my food poison. That pain kind of started spreading around my chest, especially more to more to the right side. Right under my ribcage.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 17:54
The low last one of the rib was kind of like sharp pain. It wasn’t like that for about four days, starting screaming and yelling. To a point, my parents got scared of the way I started screaming and shouting from the pain.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 18:13
So what I was able to do was take my medication, which is there, they gave me like typical and other depression and depressive medications. And closer on medications. That was everything that was on at that time.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 18:31
They rushed me to the hospital, they did an x-ray on my chest. They said everything was fine. Went back home, and the pain was even worse the next day, I went back to another hospital. And the nurse was sitting there with my mom.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 18:47
And he looked at me and asked me like did you stop any medication? I looked at her I was like, I don’t know. I’m not handling all these things on my right now. I wasn’t like having a stroke. I’m not aware of what’s going on with myself in my surroundings.
It’s a big problem when you have a stroke, and you’re trying to be alert and do all the things but you have cognitive fatigue, you have all sorts of deficits as a result of your stroke. You’re not the best person to make all the necessary steps and decisions just simply because you’ve been affected by a stroke.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 19:26
Yeah, I thought it was something I’m gonna get better within a week or two. Yeah, like a disease is gonna come and go with a vaccine or something. Yeah. I was still not into that state of mind of understanding what stroke is what to do, and what the effect how it affects you in the long run.
And then what happened with the pain in your abdomen?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 19:52
When the nurse gave me a bunch of aspirin? My mom looked at me and said, Yeah, the doctor in Beirut made him stop the blood thinners. So he gave me a bunch of aspirin, baby aspirin. But he feels better.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 20:07
I’m like, I’m not sure it’s like, Can you lift it but I wasn’t able to lift my legs to get into a CT scan? Was the pain that severe? Is like you, if you don’t mind, I want to take it to a different room, I will do some tests on you I’m like Sure. If it helps, why not?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 20:23
I was able to lift my legs. He got some kind of machine like an echo. He ran around my lungs. He’s like, there it is. Then when she’s like, what’s that? Like? They’re like shattered clots. And also milk to my mind was like, not a lot of people survived.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 20:43
They put me in the CT scan again. It was very clear I was having a pulmonary embolism, B. And, of course, were started in my hip to my life. And I was like blaming myself like, is it because I took that cigarette again, my friends do the heavy smokers. So I started to have a cigarette, I wanted to feel young again.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 21:11
So let me have a cigarette. And I was in a severe depression at that time. After my stroke in about a couple of months, I was sleeping at five in the morning, waking up the next day at probably two o’clock in the afternoon.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 21:31
Wasting my day not doing exercise not doing anything. That was my routine for about six months. So I kind of like blame myself for that. Then I saw a hematologist in Lebanon after the hospital, who put me in the ICU for about one week. I was monitored for about one week.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 21:55
I’m like this is it, I’m going to die. That pain is now slowly still slowly gone away, I was still in pain in the ICU. They couldn’t do much the kid just gave me painkillers were not an option. So I had a mask on for the oxygen to help me breathe better, make sure that the costs of and they’re constantly taken blood samples.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 22:22
They wanted to put me on warfarin then doctors changed my medication to a different brand, which doesn’t allow me to take blood tests and constantly check the consistency of my blood. So I stayed on that for about another couple of months.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 22:40
And the situation in Lebanon politically was not very good. My brother lived here in Dallas. Well, I mean Texas, Dallas. So we decided to move back here to the States and probably seek better treatment and more stability and safety reasons, which was much better than Lebanon.
Factor V Leiden
Abdul Wahed Hassan 23:00
So I saw a hematologist and I asked him like nobody gave me a clear answer about my stroke. So he asked me for my previous reports, and I gave him everything I had that paper says Factor V Leiden, you’re eight times more likely to have a stroke than any normal human being.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 23:22
I’m like so couldn’t be the alcohol and smoking, probably smoking a little bit. I’m like, I also had had a history of anxiety and stress. Like that also triggers the opposite much factors that could trigger the blood to clot.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 23:38
I thought I was going to stop blood thinners he’s like you have to go to stay on them for a very long time over the rest of your life. I’d not argue not in a position to argue when I’m in. When I have a condition like that. That’s a treatment. I’ll go for it. Since that day, spasms have reduced my arm until today.
What kind of what kind of work were you doing? In Dubai?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 24:03
I was in construction. As a site coordinator for a company that does drywall, they work on churches, mosques, hotels, and residences. Everything related to gypsum work.
And have you been able to go back to work since 2018?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 24:28
Not until last year. When my because my draw foot is not helping me very much. Last year, I had a friend from New Jersey come over he’s a pilot, best friend of mine. He suggested that try to fly to a call center on his computer. He works in an aviation company based in Dallas. I applied for that position. I got accepted.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 24:56
I went there, to see if I was capable of working and starting My life again. I wasn’t there. At the start, it was a little tense for me because of high-rise buildings and anything high for me. I started to develop like a vertical. Like right after my stroke I was able to get on my escalator and got to move here on my own too.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 25:17
That was my sort of entertainment for myself. But CES last year, that was not the condition. If I go to the mall, I can’t get on an escalator. I just get stiff. I can’t move can’t walk can lift my leg muscles bells in Walsall, my left leg.
Do you think that’s related to your anxiety? Or is it something else?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 25:45
It’s great for the stroke because some muscles I can’t control don’t allow me to control my muscles. I couldn’t bend my knee very much at that time, so anything very high from a first floor looking down. It’s scary. I mean, believe me, I want to see Spider-Man with my brother. The scenes when he flies from unbelief to the other. That kind of scares me and gives me anxiety.
Right? Just the movie.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 26:16
Just the movie looking at dimensions. It’s kind of weird. I don’t know why. But it happened.
And you’ve not been in that situation before the stroke didn’t bother you previously.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 26:29
No before the stroke, I was working in Dubai in high-rising buildings. Like the 40 floor. I was living on the 30/23 floor in Dubai. And I stick my head over the balcony with no problem. But with time which started last actually a couple of months ago, I was able to find a drop foot to air to help me with my ankle stability and walk better. Kinda pretty much-fixed part of the problem. Because when I’m off balance, worried about my ankle. Twisting stats are very scary for me.
Were you able to go and work in a call center?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 27:23
Yeah, I used a walker to assist me in moving around the building inside the park and outside the park and just being mobile inside the building helped me to go through. I didn’t work for 10 weeks and did not complete the training for a reason that they had. It was very hard for me to I mean, my memory was not affected.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 27:48
It got stronger. I remember very sharp things from before my stroke and during my stroke. But I also have a history of ADD. I can see that. I still carry that to today. It reduced I can concentrate with no problem for a long time if something interests me. However, I was working on an airline airline required me to memorize city codes from all over the globe.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 28:23
Doing over 501 At least to pass the assessment, I wasn’t able to do that. So that did not qualify me to move on with my career at the call center. So I left for whatever reason there is. But now I started the job about three weeks ago at a supermarket. As a cashier, I assist people with the self-checkout machines at the supermarket.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 28:54
So it kind of keeps me walking around between machines and assisting people. It’s not a career to develop in the future, I would say but it helps with my recovery. Yeah. It kind of keeps my brain distracted. So I feel my arm is more relaxed when I work about after a couple of hours. That’s a plus for me.
Is it easy to get to from where you’re living?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 29:22
It’s not very far. I can drive now. I started last year since I was seizure-free for about three months. For three years. My daughter was like you’re okay to drive.
There’s something really important about being able to get back to work. I know a lot of stroke survivors. You know, they desperately need to go back to work for financial reasons.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 29:45
Because Because you’re pretty much putting your life on hold. When you have a stroke. You have no financial control and no mobility control there is you’re very limited on what you have to do.
As a result of that getting Back to work does seem to help a lot of people to boost their recovery and emotional well-being. Their psychological well-being, does a lot of things to support people. Sometimes people go back to work early, and they find themselves a little bit fatigued, or they feel like they went back a little too early. Did you when you went back for the first few days? Did you notice any serious levels of fatigue, or how were you the next day,
Abdul Wahed Hassan 30:32
I wouldn’t say it was serious it was it took me a while to adjust because my sleep cycle was very bad right after my stroke. Up until this year, I was able to constantly wake up on a routine six in the morning and sleep in the evening.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 30:52
Just like I was trying to get myself prepared in case I find a job that allows me to do what I can do at the time with limited mobility, whether it’s in an office or at home. So I pretty much trained myself because after the stroke, what I try to understand is you have to train your brain to do something new.
So how long have you been at the supermarket now?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 31:16
But three weeks? One’s started last month in November. Sorry, in October. Yeah. By the end of October, I started.
Getting back to work after a stroke
Okay. So it’s been nearly two months. That’s great. I went back to work in an office, a very low-level admin job for about three years, as well. So previously, I was in not construction, but a property maintenance business, and we do a lot of painting and repairs, on people’s homes and in different buildings.
And I couldn’t go back to that for many years. But I did three years in an office where I was just doing paying people’s wages, payroll, and all that kind of stuff, and doing pricing and all sorts of different things. But it wasn’t very complicated to make it difficult for me to do or achieve.
And that’s why I chose it because it was going to be easy. All I had to do was turn up, then all I had to do was go home. I didn’t take any work home with me, there was none of that. And for three years, it was a really good, easy way back into the workforce and recovery.
It helped get my mind focusing again, it helped me have a good routine, and interact with people and do all of those things, which was beneficial. But, it wasn’t a long-term thing. But I did it for as long as I needed to feel comfortable about the whole going back to work thing.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 33:04
I mean, it’s funny, I didn’t meet too many people who had a stroke. And up until I started my work. At the supermarket. There was a there’s a lady associate of mine. at the cash register, she’s retired. The way she said that she had a stroke, a brain bleed in the 90s when she was about 40 years old.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 33:30
So if you do the math, she’s not young this time. And she had a stroke in her 40s. I had my stroke in the early 30s. And when I look at her going on her break the way she walks talks and it’s like nothing’s wrong with it. So I have high hopes that up pretty much recovered as much as she did, but I don’t know how massive her stroke was. Well, mine was pretty bad.
Yeah. Where were in the head with the clock go Do you know which part of the brain it was impacted?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 34:06
I know it’s on the right side because it’s affecting my left arm. It’s pretty much on the back. But I’m not very sure, to be honest. I do have the scan. It’s overseas is dark. Sometimes I think like there’s no brain there.
Okay, so there was a lot of shadowing on the scan.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 34:28
Very to a large part. Yeah. And my neurologist says, since he figured out that I had the blood clot disorder, he’s like, you probably had those clots since you were in high school and developed until you’re at that age because typically when my hematologist said that whoever cares that genuinely Sawyer, basically they have the cloth and I don’t know all the age in life, probably over 60 They have the clock
But there’s a sense there’s a feeling that maybe there were older clots occurring or strokes happening when you were younger, but you just weren’t aware of it.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 35:11
It was possible because it’s not only one clot, it’s just the whole area that was developing the clots.
Did you have any symptoms before that? Thinking back, knowing what you know, now, that was a sign that something was happening. Any ideas? Any times when you felt strange? And you thought that it was nothing major, but maybe it was a stroke?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 35:40
I could not say No, I couldn’t was not aware of anything happening. I was concentrating fifth, getting my life back in a better condition. I have been seeing a single counselor for some time. I was food binging I had mild depression at that time I was on antidepressant medication. And stimulants as well for add to help with my morning, and my attitude at that time.
That does add effect you what does it do to people,
Abdul Wahed Hassan 36:15
it is pretty much when someone can sit down and concentrate on one thing, completing a task. But the way it was explained to me is that it’s the way the subconscious works, it distracts you from doing something.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 36:33
So you can have a break out of the medical term for exactly what I have done since I was in middle school. And I was on stimulants since and it’s pretty much the medication, the stimulants, they pretty much like injecting your body with coffee that keeps you hyped up and aware of something and gets you interested in doing things and completing the task.
Did you find that those stimulants work for you in a way that they did help?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 37:01
At that time? Yes, in high school, it did assist me with completing my job to graduate at least.
In the construction industry, with the plasterwork that you were doing with the drywall, does ADD impact your being able to do that job properly?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 37:22
Not very much never marched because, inside the construction, you’re always distracted with sound, including tasks. So it did not affect me at that time. I did study graphic design but I could not accomplish it. Even when I was doing freelancing. After I finished college, I wasn’t able to complete a project unless I was using symbols.
So it’s sitting is it for you sitting down tasks. Doing that kind of computer work or handwritten work that types of things that you’re distracted that you found that you were getting distracted from not the physical tasks like applying drywall or plaster onto a wall.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 38:17
Wasn’t working as an operator in construction as a site coordinator, or side by side with an engineer completing tasks on time making sure the project finishes on time, and doing quality control.
So that didn’t distract you from those tasks, keeping people on unscheduled.
On that kind of job, no.
Interesting. So I imagine there was a lot of paperwork involved with that though. A lot of emails, a lot of computer work.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 38:50
Very much. Yeah. Statements and all these contracts stuff. Yep.
Compliance issues, etc. You didn’t have any challenges, completing those tasks?
Working while on blood thinner medication
Abdul Wahed Hassan 39:04
Not at all. But since that’s not an option for me to do now to work in construction, and for my safety and since I’m on blood thinners and if I fall, that’s considered a serious thing, which happened to me about a week ago, walking in the office wanted to finish something and I just tripped over the curb over the sidewalk and fell.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 39:29
I was completely anxious for about a couple of days. Weary to feel the headache, which never happened because I never bumped my head into anything. Just think anxiety still comes and goes but not as much as before, because I pretty much tried to train myself and I’m very grateful that one of my aunts introduced me to one of our life coaches, which I find very important.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 39:55
To assist me to self developing myself, controlling my emotions, and controlling my mind Abbott’s to learn a lot from them. Pretty much to self-motivate yourself and that would assist to move on in life. Because pretty much after my stroke, I carried everything before my stroke until today, my anxiety my not my depression, which I was able to get over, which is very important because otherwise, it would end for me very good for anyone.
Yeah. When you fall over, is it concerned that you’ll have a bleed or something will continue to bleed a cut or something?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 40:34
Absolutely. Because being on blood thinners, it’s very hard to stop the bleeding, especially if it’s severe. But great, thank God, it wasn’t very severe. It’s just a little scratch block that came out. It stopped immediately.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 40:46
So just so bandage did the job, but on the headband on blood thinners, or a serious cut. That’s when you’d see a special or go to a Care Center. And I constantly like any kind of pain, I feel like immediately go to the hospital. Because I don’t want to assume like when I assumed I had stomach pain, and then after the stroke, another stroke on the way
for somebody who lived outside of the United States in Dubai. And then you come back to the United States. Are you covered medically? Do you have insurance that covers all of that?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 41:31
What it’s a brain injury, I’m considered to have medical insurance because I contributed with my taxpayer. When I was in high school, I went to New Jersey about 20 years ago, I studied there while I was studying I did a part-time job which allowed me to contribute the tax payment into the system. So I have Medicaid, which is a government insurance. Okay.
So you have some kind of a level of insurance and cover for your hospital visits and you’re yes definitely
Abdul Wahed Hassan 42:09
does. Yeah, definitely. Because without that I will not be able to live medication itself. The blood thinners that I take are not very cheap.
Was it easy to go back to the United States as far as were you an American citizen? As a result, it was an easy entry or did you have any difficulties getting back in there?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 42:29
It was very easy for me. I mean, I’m an American citizen. So I’m pretty much coming back home. So okay. I did have a little trip with the security guys at the airport. It’s my stamp has a lot of my American passport has a lot of stamps in Lebanon.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 42:48
So that raised a lot of questions. And since my stroke, I usually typically know when I introduce myself to people I apologize in advance for my unfiltered mouth kind of picked that habit up so my name doesn’t make anything easy.
Your name, your location at travel, etc. But the fact that you’re an American citizen doesn’t play some kind of a part in making life a bit easier.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 43:21
It does. It does contribute to being a citizen of a country and getting the benefits and treatment needed as a citizen. It’s a big plus.
Yeah, yeah. So you’re living now with your brother? Is that right?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 43:41
My parents and one of my siblings. I have another sibling who lives in Canada. Which I go visit once a year. I have family in Canada. My mom’s family?
Do you feel you can’t live on your own at the moment independently?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 44:01
I believe I can. I mean, I live my life with a one-hand purse on one hand the person I’m married to is my specificity so everything I do with one hand I can drive. Last year I was able to get my driver’s license.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 44:17
This year I was able to restrict my driver’s license to use a steering knob with digital turn signals provided by the state government the assessment for Texas Workforce in their assists people with disability to get back to employment and get into the does a normal life a very good program over here.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 44:48
If they started anything related to bringing me back to employment they would assist me with driving is one of the things that’s essential for me to go to work. So restricting my driver’s license allows me to add an attachment to modify my vehicle so I can drive safely while struggling on the highway. It’s a little stressful for me not to be able to give a turn soon at the last minute, it’s pretty dangerous. And Texas highways are pretty high speed by 85 miles an hour, some highways.
So you’re driving with one hand, you can access all of the turn signals and all of the necessary standard turn signals. So right, how have they been adjusted? You say digitally? Is there a button that is on your steering wheel? How does that work?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 45:45
You know, the knob you attach? It has a turn signals. It’s a digital.
Aha has a turn signal installed on the knobs now.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 45:55
Yeah, it’s German-made, I believe.
In the past, they were just a knob to help people with the actual steering wheel.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 46:04
Yeah, I have that now. And, my mom’s mother’s vehicle was I’m still waiting for approval. And it’s a process that takes time with the gun work. So I joined now with a steering wheel they called Suicide Knob I don’t know why.
I don’t know why either. That’s crazy that they call it that. So you can’t just go and buy one and put one of those on your steering wheel, you have to go through a process of approval and so on.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 46:37
It will be a smart way to go through a process because it’s not very cheap to install that. It’s a $5,000 device, basically, with installation.
Is it? Just a steering wheel knob?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 46:53
Steering wheel knob that’s digital, attach it and my car is not brand new. So it takes a long process to do that. And usually when you restrict your driver’s license here in the state of Texas, or even in the United States, the advantages other than tax relief on the vehicle when you purchase, it’s when you get into a car accident. If I totaled the car, and God forbid I had someone, who had severe damage with death, it would save me from going to jail.
So the reason is litigious, it’s a safety first, it’s to assess the situation, make sure that you’re eligible, if you are eligible, then make sure that you’re also covered in the event of a collision, that you’re not automatically the person at fault, because you’ve broken the law.
And you’ve interfered with the stock standard vehicle and you’ve modified it. So what they want to do is make sure that you’re covered every step of the way, as well as doing it in an approved manner. That’s safe.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 48:09
Right? I would say so.
Okay, that makes complete sense. I like that idea. But does it take a little bit of time to get that all approved and get it over the line?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 48:21
It does take quite a time. I mean, they did assist me with having driving lessons, they want to check if I’m physically able to get in the car and drive. And the checkpoint ignition, my focus on driving and I took I pretty much went back to being in high school learning how to drive from ground zero.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 48:44
And I did probably need that kind of lesson to learn new things driving, like accelerating on the yield sign and exiting the highway and getting onto the highway. Those are things I was never aware of, even before my stroke. Okay, to kind of learn new things. So that’s pretty important, too, for safety reasons. I mean, I learned to drive, from Brazil.
Getting back independence
So it’s positive in many ways. It’s giving you your independence back but also, you learned a few things that you didn’t know you needed to know. That’s awesome. So, now that you have your independence how has that improved your life? What has that changed for you?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 49:34
What first start, I’m able to go to my physicians on my own. I’m looking to start my career. I believe you’re gonna have to go back to college. That’s a good start to do you have to start over I believe because for me stroke is getting born again with rebirth. If you think about it when you first have your stroke, your arms, the spasticity, it’s all interior inside your body, just the same way you were born, your brain hibernates and shuts down.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 50:04
So you need to start again, retrain your brain to do new things to solve while talking, and think through the struggle, and is a very challenging time, mentally, physically, and emotionally. Because adjusting to something new in your life, it’s not easy. You start questioning why this happened to me not, it’s not very good to feel envious, whether this guy’s healthy or not.
It’s not good. Understandably, sometimes you will ask yourself, why mayor that
Abdul Wahed Hassan 50:46
if I serve, I mean, I was having a good life. I mean, when I went when I was fired from my previous job in Dubai, I started my own business. Yeah, it wasn’t going well for about a year and a half. But as soon as it started to get better, I had a stroke. I mean, it’s unfair.
It is very shit. So interestingly, when I was working in my painting business, I had probably about six or seven years before the stroke, while I was running that business. And maybe about eight or nine. It was a hard slog because I started my business around just a few years before the global financial crisis.
So we were only operating for a short amount of time before the global financial crisis hit. And then there was a lot of difficulty obtaining work and quality work and well-paid work. We got through that. And then I started to get my feet on the ground. I started to learn about business and started to get advice from people about how to go about business.
And I remember about a week before I ended up in hospital, I landed the biggest job I’ve ever landed. So in 2012, we landed a job that was worth $170,000. That was awake before I ended up in the hospital. And as a result of ending up in hospital, I couldn’t do the job. And it was similar to what you’re describing, you know, we worked so hard, it got to that point.
I was fully in, we were employing people. We were doing good business, we had good clients, we had everything that I could have ever wanted from a business. And then within a week, I was in the hospital, and everything was gone, I had nothing, and it was really difficult to get my head around that.
And that would have been a very good windfall, we would have made some good profit on that we would have created great relationships, and that would have changed the kind of work that I was doing. And just within one moment, I ended up without all of that, which is okay, I’m grateful that I’m still alive. I’m grateful that I still have my family.
And I’ve been able to recover for many years since 2012. You know, nearly I’m nearly at the 14-year mark. So a lot of positives have come out of my recovery. But I did spend some time thinking about all the things that I had lost at the beginning, you do that you spend a little bit of time thinking about what could have been.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 53:32
Now I’m starting to understand that thinking about things that you lost, that’s a waste of time. Whether you’re a stroke patient or your stroke, you had a stroke or you don’t smooth it’s about all about moving forward to distract yourself. Because thinking about the past while that happened, and what I lost in that period. You can always make it up by putting effort and energy into doing something better in the future.
I agree with them. But it’s okay that people get a little bit shitty about the situation, especially at the beginning, because it’s a big shock and you have to adjust and you have to find a new way to do yourself and to overcome all your challenges.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 54:13
The hardest thing about having a stroke for Abdul Wahed Hassan
Tell me about what you feel is the hardest thing about a stroke.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 54:24
Spasticity is probably one of the hardest things because you very much need to walk and grab things. Driving is one thing. I mean, I was a pianist, I was good at playing the piano. That’s one thing I miss a lot of things you miss those are the hard things things that you do the most you miss.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 54:46
Exercising, like for example boxing I was doing before my stroke. It was pretty much a stress relief. Gets the devil out of you. I remember watching your bag, finance It’s good, whether it’s healthy or not, by my condition. It doesn’t matter. But if it releases stress, and it helps assist with my mood and spirit and sees mine as something I miss, I would say so.
You don’t think you can punch a bag now, even with one arm?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 55:21
One arm it is but it’s different with two just to put it all in one bag.
What’s something that stroke has taught you if anything,
Abdul Wahed Hassan 55:34
Patience. Patience is very important. I mean, I’m not a religious person. Actually. Now I am. I wasn’t before my stroke up until I had my pulmonary embolism in the ICU after they showered me. I’m a Muslim.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 55:49
So before praying, you have to perform the abolition, cleansing water after they showered me that night, in that I prayed for the first time in my life. I probably wouldn’t be younger, probably 10 years old. But during that time, I never prayed, I prayed that day.
Can you tell us what you prayed for?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 56:13
My survival, to do something good in life? I wanted to do that. Since that day, right before my stroke and a couple of months ago, I started writing a dream diary. I found that very interesting. There was a dream that I had gotten stuck in my head I couldn’t forget it. So I decided Why not to write a diary and hopefully one day write a book out of it.
That’s a great idea.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 56:37
my stroke. I’ve been having dreams. I’m unable to explain or interpret
Yeah, that’s a great idea. Tell me about your. So you were raised as a Muslim, and you understood the concept of God about the faith that you were raised in and taught about. And then what happened do you think between the ages of 10 and 32? Do you feel like you just drifted away from it, or you didn’t?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 57:09
I was a kid. Being 14 years old, I drifted pretty much drifted away. I couldn’t understand life at that time. There is no pressure in life. I have two jobs only study wake up early go to school. That was my job up until I was pretty much 20 years old. And right after my stroke, I consider myself to be an affliction. Why? Because it’s a test for the afterlife. Okay, I mean, like each other if you’re Christian, but yeah, the book of Job, you can learn a lot from that.
I’m Christian, but I’m a little bit like you I’m a little bit disconnected from my religion. But I haven’t put a lot of time and effort into understanding all of the differences.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 57:55
Because I find the book of Job very interesting. I mean, in high school, we did a play. And that play was the book of Job was the sort of job. And for some reason, my teacher decided that I should be the speaker of God as God speaking to Job, I wasn’t very good at that. That’s kind of triggered after my stroke. So to remember things like back in high school, like, there has to be a meaning that means something and spirit wise spirit, like dreams, for example.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 58:30
I like I like I don’t know what dreams they are. Nobody knows what they are. Nobody can define dreams. But I like to believe that dreams are something when your soul leaves your body when you sleep, you’re pretty much dead. So your soul leaves your body and meets other souls. And that’s how you see them.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 58:47
I like to believe that and what the interpretation is, I mean, you can interpret it your way. Or if you tell it to someone, they can interpret it their way. It could be something positive, it could be something negative, but it could be some chemical balance in your brain, whatever it is, there’s a purpose to dreams. And that’s also why Joseph had that kind of miracle in religion, so because I pretty much doubted my faith, right after my stroke. But with time, it empowered me.
It is a very similar story you get from a lot of stroke survivors, I understand that completely. The stroke didn’t change my relationship with religion, I think I’m still the same as religious as I was previously.
But I understand that there are some important aspects to religion, especially when they’re teaching things like how to have faith, to believe in a higher purpose, and to have, you know, all these other things that are associated with him motivating us to continue life went to look for actually
Abdul Wahed Hassan 1:00:01
I learned something very important. I’d like to share as well, because whether it’s religion or not, just like the stories you see, and learn from religion, if you implement all the stories of God’s work into your own life, it’s all about decisions. For example, the story of Adam and Eve. It’s one of my favorite stories because I hear that a lot, especially in my culture. It’s all Eve’s fault.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 1:00:29
It’s not, I don’t believe it is. I mean, Eve did not slap Adam in the face, and tell him go fetch that apple. It just someone told him, that’s the apple over there, that you’re not supposed to touch. And Adam with his power, in his mind, with his conscious approach to Apple and touched it, that was a decision he made. So pretty much everything you do in life, it’s your own decision.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 1:00:59
But the judging part is that’s not someone else to judge you on what you decide on in life. That’s the highest power level, judge what you do, whether it’s destiny, God, Allah, Yahweh, call, or whatever you want.
I have this thing that I talked about, that I’ve spoken about previously on the podcast with regards to God one of the difficulties I had with religion was that when we went to church, we were told that God is external to us, so that we had to pray to God. You know, it’s like some like an external being, or spirit or whatever it was, that wasn’t within us.
And we kind of had to outsource the things that we dreamed and hoped for, we had to outsource it to God. And if God didn’t give us what we wanted, it was God’s will. If we got what we wanted, then we had to thank God for that. And I, I do, I feel like God is in me, is within me. Now I’m not God.
Of course, I’m not taking that level of responsibility for things. I’m just saying. It’s easier if I, instead of outsourcing God, and putting it in good pour God outside of me, to put God inside of me, whatever that means. I don’t even know what it means, right?
But when I do that, what I do is I see the question that I have, or the desire that I have, or the wish that I have, I see it as being my responsibility to make it happen. And that, God, the universe will create the resources, the path, the opportunities for the decision that I’ve made to fulfill that decision for me. So it’s going to all come together, but mainly because I had the responsibility.
And that’s kind of what I got out of the stroke with regards to my changing beliefs around how I go about my life, and my recovery is there. Now I can pray to God, so to speak, to give me something that I desire, but who I’m praying to is me, God, which is within me. And that makes me more motivated to find the solutions to get what I want.
Finding religion after a stroke
For example, the podcast doesn’t exist. If I didn’t have a stroke, this podcast just doesn’t happen. And the reason it happened is that I took responsibility, with God’s support, and encouragement, and my support and encouragement, all combined, to do something I’ve never done before, like, like a podcast to try and generate this amazing thing that the old me would never have done.
So it just empowers me to do crazy stuff that I think I’m not capable of doing, afraid to do, or worried about doing. And, and that’s been a benefit. Like, that’s a real benefit that I had this new way of seeing God as an end to the role that God plays in my life or my daily existence. Do you know like, it’s positive, but I don’t and I can’t even describe it properly.
You can say I don’t even know what I’m on about but hopefully that gives you a bit of an insight into how I’ve kind of come to terms with all of that stuff. Before the stroke, I didn’t believe I could do any of these types of things.
Which is strange, because I had to have the stroke to believe that it was possible to do hard things even though it’s even harder to do now because I have to deal with the brain that’s been injured. I’m glad it’s working out a way for you. For me. It’s good that you’ve been able to go down that path.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 1:04:57
I would say it is because even If I didn’t have the straw, probably something would have happened. Yeah, that’s probably something that would have happened to me at a construction site that I’ve seen multiple times and the rain falling on the ground. So I could have been somewhere around back then.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 1:05:15
Yeah, all we did was I used to drink and drive as well. So that wasn’t very think. Thinking about it. Now, that’s something I would never do. Put me and someone else in danger. Or even the alcohol abuse.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 1:05:33
Like when I asked my doctor if alcohol and smoking would put me in that kind of position, it was like no, if you never had that blood clot disorder, if you moved on for another couple of years, or probably had that stroke. So maybe that was the final stroke I would have had. So I would say the stroke also did a good thing to me, saved me from from something.
Did it save you from your bad habits?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 1:05:58
Right, I would say so.
I agree, because I used to smoke, and I wasn’t a heavy drinker, but I used to smoke and not eat properly and not sleep properly and work too much. And the stroke interrupted all of those bad patterns and behaviors.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 1:06:13
And also, maybe that mild depression that I had, would have developed to cure depression probably would have on myself or someone else. So with that stroke was a good thing.
So there’s a lot of blessings.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 1:06:28
It comes with the price, but it is.
That’s a very important point that you make it does come with a price there’s a price to pay. But some blessings have emerged from that it’s good that you can focus on them from time to time, and you can see the blessings.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 1:06:45
That’s probably one of the reasons why I pray. Because I have to be grateful for someone. If not I would have that consciousness and the power to overcome the things I need to overcome. There is something higher than bigger than to thank. Don’t listen, that’s what makes me believe in God.
Abdul Wahed Hassan’s message
That’s a good thing. What would you tell somebody who’s listening to this podcast? Maybe they’ve just had a stroke, they’re going through a tough time. And they’re hoping that they’re going to listen to this podcast and get a little bit of guidance, what would you tell somebody in that situation?
Abdul Wahed Hassan 1:07:29
There will be a lot of things to say, but simplify it for people who already had a stroke, I will say, to be very patient and believe in whatever they believe in, and keep on hold with that faith and that belief.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 1:07:41
And if you had they decided that it will get better, it will get better if they decide that this will not be good for them. It will never be good. It will get stuck on that thing if you’re training your brain to keep on that threshold. It’s like losing hope.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 1:07:58
It’s gonna stay that way. Gonna keep lost. I mean, it’s called losing hope, not hoping you lose hope that it stays that way. It’s very important to find ways to motivate yourself. That’s very important because if you’re not motivated, it’s very hard to stand up.
Abe, thank you so much for joining me on the podcast. I appreciate you reaching out and requesting to be on the show. Thank you for sharing your story. And congratulations on your recovery so far.
Abdul Wahed Hassan 1:08:29
Thank you very much. Appreciate you having me on the show. And I wish you and everyone listening to have a Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and many, many blessings.
Well, thank you once again for joining us on today’s episode to get the Amazon links of where to get a copy of my book The Unexpected Way that a Stroke Became the Best Thing That Happened. Visit the show notes of this episode by going to recoveryafterstroke.com/episodes.
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