In October 2013, Ginny Hanily suffered a life-changing stroke. After an active life of raising four children and managing the family construction business, she faces a future with many obstacles due to the extensive brain injury she has sustained.
Ginny nearly lost her life due to the sudden brain bleed but fought back for six months in the hospital and relearned many skills like how to eat and how to talk. Her loving husband, Pat, delegated work as best he could to keep their business running while spending hours at the hospital every day to be with her.
June 1, 2015
Like many of you, we celebrated Mother’s Day recently. It was an excellent opportunity to watch all the kids play together (outside thankfully), catch up with each other, and take a family picture. The normalcy of it was remarkable. Less than two years ago, the reason for us to celebrate Mother’s Day in this fashion was nearly taken from us by a stroke. We sometimes forget the holes we wore in our knees praying back then.
In years past, whenever I’ve asked Mom what she wanted for Mother’s Day, she would always reply, “Oh honey, just to be with the family is all I need”. Of course, we’d always get her something to plant in her yard. This year she answered the same. And, it rang truer than ever. Being with the family excited her so much, she woke up early and couldn’t get back to sleep. Even though she showed up tired, she enjoyed being around her husband, kids, grandkids, and dogs.
And though it appeared normal, we didn’t get her something for her yard. Mom no longer has a yard. There are no more Spring mornings when my phone rings with her on the other end telling me to get over there to split the Hostas so I can plant more at my house. Not this year. Her house was sold. She lives in an apartment in an assisted living facility. And, she’s still fighting like hell to walk on her own again.
This new normal comes with challenges. The upward momentum she had last December was wiped out by a blood clot that ran the length of her leg. Treatment of the clot took months and was a major disturbance to her therapy. She lost a lot of strength that she’s been working to rebuild. It’s with great pleasure to all of us that just days after our Mother’s Day celebration, she was fitted with a brace that is greatly helping her move in the direction of walking. We’ve posted a video of her on one of her initial therapy sessions with the new brace in YouTube at: https://youtu.be/iZgKWJQmvFQ
You can tell it’s hard to do right now but comes with a huge dosage of satisfaction. It’s a reminder that we need to dust off our pants and hit the knees again. Time to lend strength is not done.
We’ve also posted pictures of Mom on her bike in the pictures section on this page.
Here is an update from Mom herself:
I finally got a leg brace that is helpful for walking. Once I get my momentum going, I can advance my leg with no help. So, I am walking – it’s clumsy and not pretty, but it’s walking while holding onto a handrail or a cane. Before the brace, I could only walk with someone helping me. So, progress is being made on the walking front.
I’m very blessed to have such wonderful friends who continue to visit on a weekly basis. And a big THANK YOU to all of you – you know who you are. Pat and the family have also been so supportive with frequent visits. I love to see the grandkids and kids. I’m going to get to some baseball and soccer games this summer to watch my grandkids play. I will also be going to Brainerd this summer for a week of relaxation and hanging with my friends. Pat will hopefully get some golf in during this time.
Some of the people here are very friendly. It’s bright and cheery with a fireplace that is on during chilly, rainy days and a warm cup of jo.
March 16, 2015
Update from Ginny 3/2/15:
Many of you don’t know but the first of the year started off with a little bit of a setback. A blood clot developed in my leg – a long one. It put me in Methodist Hospital on January 1. There was much debate with the doctors about what to do. It was decided that I would go on Coumadin to combat it. From Methodist Hospital, I had to go into an assisted living facility, St. Gertrudes, in Shakopee to rehab and get stronger. I was there for a couple weeks. Unfortunately, their rehab department wasn’t up to what I was used to, so I regressed. So, Pat pulled me out of there and brought me to the Lighthouse in Waconia.
The Lighthouse is an assisted living facility where I have my own apartment. The therapy here is better than St. Gertrudes but I have a ways to go to catch back up. The nice thing about this facility is that it’s central to where my family is. My kids stop over a lot and just have coffee or dinners. A lot of my friends stop by for lunch or to visit. It’s a very nice facility.
I have also been out to see a movie and am looking forward to warmer weather so I can get out more. They have a nice patio here with a fire pit and seating area that looks like it will be fun in summer. I’m about the youngest in the building so I hear a lot about the old days. They really have to get more people my age in here. Anyone? Anyone?
I’m still on the Coumadin and may be on it for the rest of my life. I won’t go back until April to get the blood clot checked. I also have been getting Botox shots in my left arm and hand to relax the tendons. I’m going to have to get a sleeveless gown to I can show off what will be the nicest looking left arm in town.
I’m looking forward to going home and am working hard to get stronger. I’m getting used to doing things one handed but need a lot more practice. Happy New Year to everyone! Stay healthy and strong!
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March 17, 2015
The Lighthouse is a nice facility. I have been there a few times visiting my uncle Jimmy. Wish you the best toward your recovery. You can do it!
March 17, 2015
Thanks for the update! I'll need your phone # so I can call and find a time to stop to meet for lunch!
December 15, 2014
And I'll be with you walking into the bar!!!!!!!!!!!!
Your Beringer White Zin girlfriend
December 15, 2014
So I just read your Thanksgiving entry. Thanks for all the good information, Chris, much appreciated. Ginny I laughed thru your entry... I hope I'm walking into the bar with you next year! Hang in there. Keep working hard... You're doing amazing! XO