This blog is dedicated to my best friend, Irina. After I had the stroke and was diagnosed with Locked-in syndrome, Irina moved back home to be close to me. She came every day by, she was there for me through my darkest hours and helped me out of depression. Irina knows what it means to be a friend. She is my “bosom buddy.”
Locked-in syndrome (LIS) is a catastrophic condition caused most often by ischemic stroke (infarct) or hemorrhage, affecting the brainstem. A patient suffering from LIS is aware but cannot move or communicate verbally due to complete paralysis of nearly all voluntary muscles in the body except for vertical eye movements and blinking.
For the ones who do not know, there is a chart which defines how disabled you are. Starting off from unable to walk up to cannot do anything by themselves.
Two years after I was paralyzed I attended a conference for the disabled. The first thing that caught my attention was the arrangement of the seating.
Optimism is the key to open yourself up to all the better things in life. Positivism is the key to making all your dreams come true. Always be naively optimistic and always have contagiously positive attitude.
We are humans, we get tired, and we all need to rest from time to time. Even a woman that does nothing (cannot move) at all gets tired. Occasionally I do not feel like getting out of bed; I need a lazy day in bed just watching television. Now and then I rather am motionless in bed than be motionless in the wheelchair.
The stunning of bells echoes hypnotizing all through the night.
They play to all people
To all people in the world
When starting of new projects I only have an idea that is created by my imagination. My positive attitude adds passion and excitement to the mixture. This becomes the birth of a project.
At the time, nobody realized that anything dramatic had happened that night. My last words on the examination table were ‘Mom, I am not paralyzed, I just do not have the energy right now’. I did not speak a word after that. Gradually all movement stopped. The last movement was in her left hand.
My mother was waiting and watching at the window when I arrived home. She was still worried about my health and had already made an appointment with a doctor. What good will it do, I thought to myself with a sigh, but promised to go. I did take it partly seriously because I had never fainted in my life before. Nevertheless, I did not stop to think about possible consequences.
Summer of 1994, I came to Finland for a couple of gigs. I had a fashion shoot for Gloria and a catalogue shoot for Fiorella. My arrival was noticed in the social columns. Their photographers at the airport to take pictures of my arrival. It was like a Cinderella story; she left Mikkeli and went to Los Angeles to become a model.