International Door & Operator Industry

MAR-APR 2018

Garage door industry magazine for garage door dealers, garage door manufacturers, garage door distributors, garage door installers, loading docks, garage door operators and openers, gates, and tools for the door industry.

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Page 36 of 142

On March 10, 2014, I celebrated my 60th birthday at home in Arizona by throwing a Frisbee around with my two sons. I thought to myself - how fortunate I am to be 60 years old and still be able to run and horse around. Little did I know that in my body there was a time bomb ticking and ready to explode. Five weeks after that great birthday, the bomb went off in the form of an aneurysm. An aneurysm goes by many names such as a massive stroke, hemorrhagic stroke, brain hemorrhage, or cerebral hemorrhage. Regardless of what it is called, it is a very serious condition that is usually fatal. Any bleeding in the brain is a serious condition that must be treated and stopped immediately to give a person any chance of seeing another day. It happened on April 14, 2014, only a few days before the IDAExpo in Las Vegas. I was aware I had blood pressure (BP) readings higher than normal and thought it could be treated by losing weight and eating healthier. Having high BP level creates more pressure in your arteries. Not getting on medication to lower my BP was my gravest error and still something I deeply regret! Because I didn't seek treatment I am paralyzed on my left side. My best advice to everyone is to watch your own health because no one else is! When an artery in the brain ruptures, the pulsing blood will actually grind away brain cells as they contact them. So your own blood supply is chewing up your brain cells with every beat of your heart. When a doctor told me this, I said that's a bad design. He laughed. In my case after the blood did its damage it pooled into a mass and congealed in the cerebellum where the spinal cord connects with the brain. The blood mass which displaced the brain cells was the size of a lemon, so I lost a portion of my brain the same size. I asked a doctor, "What happens to the blood mass? He said, "Your body will break it down and soon will dissolve and metabolize it. He added, "When that happens you will be left with an empty space in your brain where there is nothing but air." No jokes please. After spending six months in the hospital, I returned to Phoenix and had another CT scan to check for other anomalies. When the techs were checking the images they were both baffled and confused by the big white space on the image. After I told them what had previously happened, they understood that was where the blood mass had been. I lost a fist size portion of my brain, yet I am still talking and breathing. That is weird! The area where I lost brain matter destroyed areas that were responsible for balance, walking, and controlling left side motor skills. They say you only use 10% of your brain, so there are spare brain cells which can replace the lost ones. The difficulty is training other brain cells to take over lost functions. There is no manual on how to do this and 4 years later I am still working on it. After 4 years of physical therapy I have learned to stand and walk with the help of a cane. It has been the hardest thing I have ever done. Nevertheless I am confident I will bounce back. I doubt I will ever carry a commercial operator up a ladder ever again so my only chance to stay engaged in our industry is to take a desk job. Check your blood pressure often and get medication if it is too high. I know it works because during the last 4 years my blood pressure has not exceeded 115/ 90. Don't wait or you may make the huge mistake I did. I didn't do anything until a catastrophe occurred. Some health issues will be instant and without warning and may be too late for you to be saved, so please beware. Good habits and watching your health will add to your years and provide more time to appreciate family. Don't gamble with your health and life because you have only one life to live. You're health is Priority One!!! TECHNICAL By Roy Bardowell Watch Your Health! 34 International Door & Operator Industryâ„¢

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