When I retired from work aged 60 in 2010 and moved to central Hove from Buckinghamshire. I suffered a significant stroke at new home in July 2011. I was rushed to the NHS Royal Sussex County hospital. When well enough I was transferred to the Princess Royal Hospital at Haywards Heath for rehabilitation, mainly bed-rest and occasional physiotherapy. Months later I was discharged in a wheelchair with my left side paralysed.
The senior physiotherapist at Haywards Heath recommended a physiotherapy company in Hove who she thought could help with my recovery. With their help I regained the unsteady use of my feet after a long struggle. However, their laid-back physiotherapist ran out of ideas and steam and things started to drift; exacerbated by her unreliable and inconsistent appointment scheduling, appalling timekeeping and crass payment management. I decided to take a break from them and scoured the internet for useful advice on DIY recovery techniques.
I found Dr. Balchin’s book ‘The Successful Stroke Survivor’. I thought here is someone who really knows what it’s like and has some useful techniques which could accelerate my recovery. I emailed Tom and asked him if ARNI had anyone in Hove who could help me. A few days later ARNI coach Patrick Hoad appeared on my doorstep. Patrick had walked from his home nearby. He thought that we had already met at Princess Royal hospital where he had served as a physiotherapist, which was correct.
This great start has matured into a respectful relationship based on excellent communication, trust and proven techniques, supported by an efficient appointment scheduling, excellent timekeeping and an accurate payment system (using ARNI Instructor referral group Stroke Solutions), which with Patrick’s stimulating ideas, empathy and a positive approach accelerate my continuing improvement.
When we started, I told Patrick that my goal was to be able to walk my daughter down the aisle at her wedding in a few months’ time in 2017. It was a goal that we achieved. My daughter and her new husband were so impressed by my improvement brought about by ARNI and Patrick’s work that instead of asking their many guests for wedding presents they asked for donations to ARNI. The newlyweds were pleased to send ARNI a sizeable donation. Now thanks to Patrick and ARNI I can now hold their new baby with confidence, something that I never thought that I would be able to do following my stroke.
Also, thanks to ARNI I no longer kick the wall as I climb the stairs and I can get up from the floor unaided; what a transformation. Thank you Tom, Patrick and ARNI for your help, powerful techniques, and support in my ongoing life changing experience. My main regret is that I did not know about ARNI when I left hospital because I am certain that their specialist knowledge and approach would have brought about my transformation much earlier; but I suppose you live, if you are lucky, and learn.