David Arledge found support at Spartanburg Rehabilitation Institute while recovering from a stroke
David Arledge’s life was like many others: he got up every day, went to work, came home, and enjoyed life. He and his wife, Laura, were making the most of being empty nesters, spending time together, and staying active in their church.
Things changed the day the Arledges returned from a weekend get-a-way to celebrate their anniversary. It was an early evening, so they decided to unload the car and go grab dinner before they unpacked and settled down for the evening. As David headed down the hallway with his last load of luggage, he suddenly lost feeling in his left side. No other symptoms: no dizziness, no headache, no slurred speech. Nothing. His first response was to ask his wife, Laura, to “help me to the living room and see if this passes.” Laura’s reaction was different. “I am calling the ambulance, you are having a stroke.”
David was sent to the hospital where a stroke was confirmed. After a stay in the hospital, he transferred to Spartanburg Rehabilitation Institute. David quickly learned that recovery takes time. It takes hard work. It takes effort. It takes a willingness to prepare every day for noticeable improvement. Even if it doesn’t happen today, prepare anyway. David stated his focus was: God, Laura, his outlook on the future, and his support group.
The support group consisted of family, friends, and staff at SRI. When you mention his support group, David can’t help but smile.
“Dr. Timothy Murphree, he cared enough to learn I was a guitar picker and turn me on to new music that has helped my recovery,” David shared. “Lisa Jolley, Laura’s best friend from forever, and Joyce Young checked on me every night before they finished their shift. Erin Ehlers, my therapist! She was there every day. She earned the influence in my recovery that pushed me to get better.”
David wrote a book about his experience recovering from a stroke titled “You Can’t Walk On One Leg”
“I recently wrote a book about my experience. It is called, ‘You Can’t Walk on One Leg.’ The day I graduated from the program, I turned the corner to walk out of SRI for the last time. I was holding the walker, Laura was holding one arm and Erin was holding the other. The look on Erin’s face said ‘We made it.’ We set a goal and achieved it. I realized that God was holding all three of us!”
“The relationships I made at SRI are still thriving today!” David added with a smile.
David also wants everyone to know that God is in control. “Know that He has us in this place, at this time, for this reason. We don’t always understand our circumstances but they are a part of His plan for our lives. Success means we don’t allow the circumstance to dictate the outcome.”
“Our ‘trials’ would be better defined as ‘training.’ God knew how I would respond to a stroke. He knew that I would embrace the training, learn from it, and move on. Who we come in contact with is purposeful. God is not going to leave you alone in training.”
David is excited about the future and using his experience and his book as tools to share with others. He is thankful every day. “I live every day to the fullest and rest in the fact that I am a stroke survivor not a stroke victim. I am abled differently, but not disabled. There is a God in heaven and He is in control of every aspect of my life. My ultimate goal is to get this message to at least one more person!”
“I was blessed in my recovery to be introduced to SRI. Without all of you, there is no doubt that my recovery would have been this successful!”