Best You Can Get
Linda Weldon had a stroke in her home in 2007. There were no warning signs at all and everyone knew her to be very healthy. She was on the phone with her sister-in-law when she realized she couldn't read the paper in front of her.
"It all happened so quickly. Minutes after talking to my sister-in-law and her getting help to me I could not have dialed a phone. I was so scared. I didn't know what was the matter with me," said Linda. She was brought to a nearby hospital and then sent by helicopter to Des Moines.
Linda shared that she had no fear at that point. "It was all kind of like a picture. I do remember seeing my daughter and she was crying. I couldn't imagine what had happened to make her so upset," said Linda.
Linda woke up from her brain surgery days later and shared that her first thought was that she was so glad to be alive.
Linda spent time a lot of time recovering at the hospital in Des Moines before going home. Her family was very supportive and kept her spirits up in a variety of ways. "After the surgery, my grandson told me that he really liked my new haircut because it looked like a Mohawk," said Linda, smiling. Linda laughed as she recalled her sister saying that she needed to get to work on writing her name well because Christmas was coming and she had to be able to sign her Visa.
Once home, she continued with outpatient speech therapy at Pella Regional Health Center. "I doctor in Pella and wanted to go there. The doctors in Des Moines said Pella was the best you can get and they were right. I worked with Tara Leidigh, my speech therapist, for more than a year. She's very special. Tara is not just my speech therapist; she is also my friend."
Thinking back to what she worked on in speech therapy, Linda remembered things that were especially difficult after her stroke. "Numbers... the clock was hard. It meant nothing to me," said Linda. "I had to learn how to make change again. It still takes time to do those things. I just tell people to give me some time because I've had a stroke. They are all very kind."
Linda also has high praise for the monthly stroke support group at Pella Regional. Linda said, "I told Tara we needed a support group here in Pella and she made it happen. We have more people coming all the time. We have become very close. We can relate to each other in a way that we can't with someone who hasn't had a stroke."
Learn more about Rehabilitation at Pella Regional.