May is Stroke Awareness Month, and we wanted to take a moment to share the story of Sherrie Goodson, our Director of Credentialing at our corporate office, Nobis Rehab Partners, which manages all of our inpatient rehab hospitals. First and foremost, Sherrie is a mother, a wife, and a friend. She’s celebrating her 62nd birthday all month because, as she explained, “Stuff happens, and you never know if it will be you.”
In 2012, Sherrie experienced the worst headache of her life. She visited her physician, who believed it was a migraine. On her way home, she called her nurse friend. Luckily, Sherrie’s friend recognized the signs of a stroke – confusion and slurred speech. She kept Sherrie on the phone until she reached her house, where an ambulance and a neighbor were waiting.
Sherrie was rushed to the hospital, where she was diagnosed with a stroke. She spent several weeks in the hospital, undergoing physical therapy and speech therapy. Initially, she lost the use of her left extremities. But with arduous work and intense stroke rehabilitation, she regained most of her function after about a month. She still sometimes faces challenges due to the stroke, particularly when she’s tired. She also relapsed when she had COVID and was on a ventilator.
Sherrie is an inspiration to us all. She is a reminder that even after a stroke, it is possible to live a full and happy life.
Advice from a Stroke Survivor
Sherrie has some advice for stroke survivors and their families:
Don't give up. Recovery from a stroke can be difficult, but it is possible. Surround yourself with a support system of family and friends, and don't be afraid to ask for help. Sherrie is grateful to a friend who encouraged her to walk and do flash cards to aid her recovery – even when she didn’t feel like it.
Find a good rehabilitation team. A good rehabilitation team can help you regain your function and independence. The resources they share are priceless.
Be patient. Recovery from a stroke takes time. Don't expect to be back to your old self overnight.
Sherrie also has some advice for rehab care teams:
Love what you do. Caring for stroke survivors can be challenging, but it is also extremely rewarding.
Focus on helping the patient. Every interaction with a stroke survivor should be focused on helping them. Ask them how they are feeling, and listen to their concerns.
Use simple tricks to help with cognitive function. Simple tricks like asking a patient to spell their name or write a sentence can help to improve their cognitive function.
Sherrie, a self-proclaimed “hat lady,” is married and has 1 daughter and 3 bonus children (2 daughters and 1 son). She’s a world traveler and is looking forward to her next cruise to Turks and Caicos. After a rewarding career with Lifecare, she joined Nobis at its inception. In addition to her certification in credentialing, Sherrie has a bachelor’s degree in business and a Master of Business in Healthcare Management. She was also a regional pharmacy trainer for Eckerd Corporation for 11 years. Sherrie is an inspiration to us all. She is a reminder that even after a stroke, it is possible to live a full and happy life. If you or someone you know has been affected by stroke and in need of stroke rehabilitation in the Shreveport, LA area, we’re here to help.