Susan A.

Susan is a retired licensed vocational nurse (LVN). She is a mother, grandmother, wife, and cat mom who enjoys traveling with her husband. Susan also travels the United States with a group of girlfriends whenever she is able.

One night, Susan and her husband were sharing dinner on what appeared to be a typical evening. She suddenly began to experience difficulty swallowing, and food started falling out from the side of her mouth. Although it was odd, she didn’t think anything serious was happening and continued with her evening.

Later that night, Susan discovered she had difficulties untying her shoes. Eventually, she was unable to stand and fell to the floor. Her husband found her lying on the floor and immediately called 911. First responders took her to Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Fresno. In the emergency room, they determined Susan had suffered a stroke. She was unable to walk or talk and felt disoriented and frustrated.

After a short stay, Susan’s physician at Kaiser suggested she continue her care at San Joaquin Valley Rehabilitation Hospital. There she could receive intensive physical and speech therapy. She agreed and transferred to SJVRH.

Susan had no recollection of her stay at Kaiser. When she arrived at SJVRH, she recalled feeling scared and angry. Once settled, she became more and more comfortable with her surroundings. During her stay, Susan improved her speech and learned to walk with a walker. Her most memorable time at SJVRH was strolling in the beautiful weather with her therapist, an activity that kept her motivated.

Susan explained, “So many people went the extra mile for me. This has been the most beautiful and fantastic place to be.” She went on to say, “Trust the staff. They will do their very best for you. Work with them as hard as you can.” Since she has returned home, Susan uses her walker less and less. She continues to see improvements and has moved forward on her path to getting back to better.