Emily Joy Arrowood
LOCAL SCHOOL BUS MONITOR THRIVING AFTER STROKE
Emily Joy Arrowood was on a school bus full of children on Feb. 2 as a school bus monitor for Tygart Creek Elementary School in Carter County, Kentucky. As the bus pulled into the school, Emily slumped over unable to speak.
What Emily was experiencing was a stroke, resulting from loss of blood flow to the brain causing localized damage, an event that can happen to anyone at any time. According to the American Heart Association, responding to a stroke quickly can prevent irreversible damage and save someone’s life.
“The children saved me because I couldn’t talk and wasn’t doing my normal routine,” said Emily. “They noticed and got the bus driver’s attention so he could get help.”
Emily spent 18 days in a hospital recovering. When it was time for the next step in her recovery, she chose to receive inpatient rehabilitation at HealthSouth Rehabilitation Hospital of Huntington in hopes of returning back home and living an active, independent life.
As a result of the stroke, Emily lost function of her left leg causing her to no longer be able to work in her flower garden, cook or use the restroom independently. On Feb. 20, Emily began rehabilitation at HealthSouth Huntington, determined to work towards her independence and get back to a better quality of life. She expected to receive intense physical and occupational therapy, but received more than that.
“The most loving and caring people I’ve ever met took care of me while I was at HealthSouth Huntington,” said Emily.
On March 31, Emily’s dedication to her rehabilitation program paid off when she reached her goal of standing up and walking by herself, safely able to return home. She started working in her flower garden again and says she is “tickled” with the therapy received that helped her relearn how to live an independent life.