My personal life unexpectedly took a big hit this weekend. On Saturday morning, I discovered that my father had suffered a mild stroke the previous day. For the last 72 hours, he’s been in the hospital getting treatment. This is all a bit of the reason why I have been a bit under the microscope the last few days. Luckily, my dad isn’t droopy (his body isn’t sagging) so I’m very grateful nothing from the stroke he suffered damaged him physically on the outside. From this point on, he is working to rebuild the strength on the left side of his body specifically.
Throughout my entire life, my dad has been one of the hardest working men I’ve known. Back in 2007, he was laid-off from his longtime job at Milsco Manufacturing Company as a welder. The company packed their bags to move to Mexico and before my dad was laid-off, he suffered an injury to his arm. That has prevented him from regaining any employment ever since. Moving on, with my father being at home virtually all of the time, he tends to do a lot of free work around the house (especially recently). The labor my dad managed to conduct around the house certainly took a toll on him. My father hates to sit around. Period. Over time, I could tell he found these activities to do around the house because he hated the title of being unemployed.
It didn’t really hit me how dangerous strokes are until I saw my dad in person for the first time. It pained me to watch the hardworking man who raised me after immigrating to America struggle to make five steps across a room. Never in my life have I seen him so broken down and weak, but yet, he still managed to have this upbeat look on his face. I don’t know how he does it.
Now I face a very big challenge ahead in the coming months. With my dad continuing therapy and rehab to build his strength back up, I still have to make sure my mother is on track at home (she’s a diabetic and sleeps with a machine to help her breathe at night). Funny, as people rotated to visit my dad’s room yesterday, I could sense more layers of expectations from Eritrean/Ethiopian people being slammed on my head. Unlike most of the others, though, this one is legitimate and acceptable in my eyes.
Living at home with both of my parents battling health problems is going to be a difficult task, but I know I can balance it along with being a journalist and a working college student. Saying “I can” isn’t even an option. I have to be ready.
Behind the Broadcaster
This blog displays topics that interest me -- including culture, entertainment, music, and life experiences.