Shot to the dome,,, the story of my stroke.  My name is Duke Harless and I suffered a severe stroke on April fool's day 2011.  In December 2011 I started  going back and reconstructing my experience through my notes and memories. Strokes are a bit of hell on earth, I sometimes wish I had the courage to document this earlier but I simply wasnt ready mentally to write down the things I was going through. I hope that this blog will help other survivors or the people that support them know how I have been dealing with it. As this is an ongoing project you may notice some new entries that are out of date sequence, this is because I may have just recalled something, or didn't  want to post it just yet.There will also be editing,,, LOTS of editing, as I remember certain parts of stories and fix spelling and grammer. I would also like people to know that I am only relating how my stroke affected myself and how some medications and therapies did or did not work for me personally.







  I am over 6 years into my recovery from my stroke and still have a lot of issues with pain, mobility and insomnia.

   Also  I deal with depression frequently. It's a part of my life now, and just like someone who has an addiction it's something I have to confront and deal with. I'm fortunate that I have developed a pretty good set of tools to help me and I have a decent support network.

  I wrote an earlier blog entry 6/29/2013 " AND THEN WE HAD TO LIVE IN A BLUE HOUSE" that addressed how people have different struggles and face different things that others may see as a mere trifle, yet it pushes them into a dark place.

   Recently my son started training Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, and I go along with him to watch him, Although he really enjoys it has probably helped me out more than him. I actually get out and talk to people now. It also made me aware of the story of Kai Wright.

  Kai was a local youth who also trained Jiu Jitsu as well. Although he had a very loving and supporting family and was popular he battled depression. Although he was diagnosed and went to therapy he ended up taking his own life.

  He was 12 years old.

   The very thought of losing one of my children at that age to ANYTHING would absolutely had devastated me. I can't imagine the grief his parents went through.

   When I heard his story it was a total shock to me that anyone so young could be lost to something I consider to be an adult ( or at minimum a teenage) problem.

   Kai's family has started an outreach program that is two-fold. It helps allow underprivledged youth participate in Jiu Jitsu and it addresses depression and suicide awareness in young people.

   One of the images for their foundation is a  " Rubic's Cube" with a piece missing and the motto " You Are Not Replaceble".

  I think that this is an absolute truth those who suffer with depression need to realize.

   Everyone is SOMEONE to others. A Friend, Mentor, Coworker, Brother, Sister, Mother Father, Son, Daughter, Boyfriend, Girlfriend or Spouse. If you are gone there is no one who will ever replace YOU.

   It is important to let everyone you have in your life know what role they feel and how important it is to keep filling that role.

   It's also important to remember the role you play. You are not replaceable. Niether am I.





Number of comments: 1

9/5/2017 9:13:01 PM - Kenneth Wilson,

Harless unfortunately I know Firsthand how it feels to try and get back everything You lost because of a Massive Stroke!
Sometimes it's hard to keep fighting when You feel like You're not improving or improving slower than You think You Should!
Keep Fighting.. You Must!
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