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The Leftovers of a Stroke

Published December 7, 2016 by Kappaloca

In February of 2016 my husband had a stroke.

He spent 3 days in Hospital and another month in a Rehab to help him get back on his feet (literally) There is a Blood clot on the brain that cannot be operated on and his left Carotid artery is 100% damaged. He had speech problems and could not swallow properly. The biggest fear was that he would swallow food and it landing in his lungs. Daily physiotherapy to help him regain his feet and speech was tough but from day 3 he had become obstinate about the way things needed to be done. He point blank refused any  medical staff helping him to bath or dress, I had to do that for him which meant I had to get into the shower with him, wash him, dry him, dress him and get him back to bed. The drooling and not knowing that his food had slipped from his mouth was embarrassing for him. He constantly wiped away at his face but always on the wrongs side. Food would leak out the left and he would wipe the right hand side over and over. He started making foolish decisions and made remarks that was completely out of Character for him. He has always been an extremely proud man. Always very particular about his Hygiene but things would slowly change.

It has now been almost 10 months since the Stroke and I have become his permanent babysitter. He has become cynical, rude, critical, short tempered,depressed at times and very lethargic. There are times when he just stays in his room all day long. He mumbles, calls everyone in the house names and nothing anyone does is ever right. If things are not done his way he sulks for days. Policies had been changed, money has become a HUGE issue to the point of waiting days after payment dates had come and gone before making them. He decides what to buy for dinner for the day. (Mostly bland stews) He has made up his mind that certain foods will make him sick and refuses to eat any of it. His diet has become almost grey. Meat (Mostly chicken or beef), Potato’s, Rice and Butter beans. Vegetables are disgusting. His favourite cereal has become Nutrilife mixed with Yogurt (YUCK). My food always gets either criticised or simply pushed aside. He has developed a sweet tooth like never before.

He hates the fact that he should not drive to the point that he sold his motorbike. a very touchy subject as this was his pride and joy. He either washes the cars, polishes it for hours or just starts the cars and reverses them around the Yard. Now and then he takes the chance to drive to Town but the nerves and anxiety gets the better of him and he hands over the keys without saying anything. If you want him to explode you must say the words, “May not drive.”  He goes apeshit. “No doctor wrote a letter anywhere to say as much. I will Drive if I want to.”

I have become fairly housebound as he does not entertain the idea of me going anywhere by myself. Most days are spent indoors. I have to make sure there is someone home with him before I can leave or at least be on their way home soon. I realise it may be fear of something happening to him again and that no one is home but he would never admit this or say it out loud. He cannot understand that I do things differently to him. He does not like my friends coming over and as I have a large Social media circle of friends who I see and meet up with on a regular basis it has become an escape for me. Whether it is for one hour or three hours, it just gives me a bit of balance again. I miss seeing my friends and hate when I have to lie or make excuses for not being able to meet up with them. I have slowly but surely felt the separation and am not being invited to functions with them anymore. I spend almost half my day in front of my Pc now (which is also a problem) as there is just no Communication between us that would not turn nasty or into a mudslinging of words. My Pc has become my retreat. My place of connecting with a voiceless crowd. As he has the ability to use an i-pad with a stylis pen. He also goes onto social media and I have to be very careful and mindful of the things I post. He sees and reads everything but never ever makes any comments. I am constantly told not to post this or post that. Say this or say that. I get questioned about who I am friends with. I just don’t have the energy to argue with him over my cyber activities. It ranges from sharing Pages, Groups, Blogs, articles and running a Chat group for our local Community that I am very involved in.

Hygiene and time has become his enemy. He waits a few days before taking a shower but his hair (Long curly hair) needs to be brushed and plaited every day. He has gone from wearing stylish matching clothes to Sweatpants ( 4 sizes to big) , mis-shaped t-shirts and Crocs. Whenever we need to be at an event and I know it starts at say 7pm, I would have to tell him that it starts at 6pm in order for him to get ready on time. He will still start getting dressed at 5min to 6 and we would leave at 6:30pm. I dare not hurry him or he will simply have a blowout and stay home.

Almost every single house chore has been taken over as I suddenly have no clue how to clean or use appliances. Instead of letting it get to me I walk away and leave him to do it. It does not get done without a bit of lip from him and the trend is always negative but it gets done his way and gives him the satisfaction that he had done it.

His Obsession has become the daily newspaper and his TV. Once he takes the Remote no one dares change the Channel. It is always Sport. Bike races, Car Races, Cricket and Rugby. The newspaper gets read from first to last word and discarded on the floor. Not folded, chucked. It heaps up and gets left everywhere. His medication has grown from one container to four. We never travel without his Nebulizer. Seldom necessary anymore but it goes wherever we go. Medication boxes does not get thrown away as it needs to be kept for the next prescription. His bedside table looks like a dumpster had been overturned as he keeps everything and everything on it. Hairbrushes, cell phones, I pad, Books, Invoices and Statements, Car Papers, Wallet, knife, tools, pills and whatever else he may need next to him. Do not try and clear anything as that would upset him and start another war. There is also a constant pile of Paper Towel balls that has been used to wipe the side of his mouth. The bin is near enough to discard it but for some reason they get placed on top of the pile.

Anyone who lives with a person who has had a stroke will testify to the fact that things has become the complete opposite of life as we knew it. Everyday brings a new challenge.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rape in South Africa

Published August 6, 2013 by Kappaloca

Rape in South Africa

In South Africa the laws are clear: Life Sentences for Rapists.

Are they upheld?

NO!! More often than not Rapists get away and walk the streets within weeks, Days and even hours after committing these heinous crimes. Nobody and no one is safe on the streets any more. 

“Life imprisonment is mandatory in South Africa for offences of premeditated murdergang rape, serial rape and rape”

To get anywhere near these results you have to undergo the most demeaning process of your life and i know of many cases where the victims either retract their case or make a far bigger choice: They commit suicide. Not every one can don a T-shirt that says: “I am a Survivor” Some victims are just way to overwhelmed by the process of getting to an actual conviction. Years and Years of slogging and backlog created by Defence Lawyers and the Court System. 

http://www.shukumisa.org.za/?p=283

 

Up to 3 600 rapes in SA every day

In South Africa, 144 women report rape to police every day – that is six cases reported every hour. 

http://www.iol.co.za/news/crime-courts/up-to-3-600-rapes-in-sa-every-day-1.1466429#.UgDoq5Iwd3E

The brutality and personal trauma that the Victims have to endure is nothing compared to the treatment they receive at the hands of medical staff and institutions in S A as there a few or little who are fully equipped to deal with them.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Effects_and_aftermath_of_rape

Case 1 of millions:

Very little is known about Thandiswa Qubuda, a recent casualty of South Africa’s violent rape pandemic. She was raped, beaten and died after lying brain dead in hospital for six weeks. There are no photos of her in newspapers, no stories of her life, no media headlines about the savage gang attack that led to her death. Qubuda’s passing would have been largely unnoticed, were it not for activists who demanded that people learn about what happened to her: that she was an unemployed woman, failed by the police and by a justice system supposed to protect her. By MANDY DE WAAL.

The 19th of January 2013 brought a rare pleasure for Thandiswa Qubuda of Hlalani in Grahamstown. Friends asked the unemployed woman, who was in her late twenties, to join them for an evening out. It was a Saturday, and Qubuda and her mates headed to Fingo Village, one of the Eastern Cape city’s oldest townships.

It is not certain exactly what happened, but just after midnight, as Saturday night became Sunday and a heavy rain fell, Qubuda faced unspeakable terror. The young woman was dragged by as many as eight men to a toilet in the midtown, gang-raped and brutally beaten. She was left to die, prostrate and half-naked in the pouring rain; unconscious and with her arms folded over her exposed breasts.

After she had lain unconscious for hours in the downpour, an ambulance would come and dispatch Qubuda to Settlers Hospital in Grahamstown, where she died some six weeks later, gasping for breath.

“Thandiswa Qubuda’s passing is horrifying. She met her death in the most savage and brutal way. If Thandiswa were from a wealthy family, her story would have been in all the newspapers, the police would have rounded up the perpetrators, and they would be in jail, but because she is unemployed she is the wretched of the earth. She does not appear in the headlines and her rapists walk free,” says Ayanda Kota, founder of the Unemployed People’s Movement (UPM).

Kota’s sister and brother-in-law were amongst the first people on the scene after the community was alerted to the rape. “There were about eight men who were raping Thandiswa when a neighbour heard the screaming and went to see what was happening. The men said that this neighbour must join in the rape or he would be shot, but the man ran off to alert the community and call the police instead,” Kota said on the phone from Grahamstown.

“The rape took place on the corner of New Town Street and E Street in Fingo village. It must have happened after midnight because people started calling the police and ambulance from about 01h45, but the police and the ambulance only arrived after 04h00 in the morning,” he said.

“What is disturbing is that the police station is less than a kilometre away from where the rape occurred. My sister and brother-in-law were at the scene where Thandiswa was found. She was half-naked and her pants were dropped at the knees. She was lying on her back facing upwards, unconscious with her arms folded over her chest as if to cover her breasts. The people who first found her thought she had already passed away,” Kota explains.

“She was lying in that rain for two hours. After 04h00, the ambulance came, a stretcher was taken out and the paramedics rushed her to hospital. Police in Grahamstown were told that it was a rape case when they got to the scene later, but they didn’t do anything. They didn’t even go to the hospital,” alleges Kota.

“A case was opened for attempted murder,” UPM spokesperson, Xola Mali, told Daily Maverick from Grahamstown. “There was a rape charge, but there was no evidence to back it up, so that case was dismissed by the court this past week.”

Independent city newspaper Grocott’s Mail reported that two men aged 19 and 20 were arrested a day after the rape and brutal assault, but were later released from custody with a warning because there wasn’t enough evidence to hold them.

The investigating officer on the case, John Manzana, told Grocott’s Mail that the pair had been arrested because “circumstantial evidence in his docket indicated that both of them were seen walking with the victim and entered the place where the victim was later found”. The state prosecutor, Asanda Koliti, withdrew rape charges because the state “had not received confirmation that the woman had indeed been raped,” the newspaper reported.

“The young woman was transferred from Settlers Hospital in Grahamstown to Livingstone Hospital in Port Elizabeth, but the doctors there said that they could do nothing for her because she was already brain dead,” Mali told Daily Maverick. “She was just sent back from Port Elizabeth to Grahamstown.

“She was an unemployed woman, but she had friends who had piece jobs (occasional employment), so sometimes her friends would get money and they would occasionally go for a night out. Because she was unemployed she largely depended on her friends and community members for food, so an evening out was a rare pleasure for her,” Mali added.

“This is not the first case we have seen like this.http://www.dailymaverick.co.za/article/2013-03-04-thandiswa-qubuda-another-dead-brick-in-the-wall-of-rape-imprisoning-south-africa/#.UgDqcJIwd3E

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