My Diagnosis: The Aftermath.


I had a divorce on 5 April 2013, after my ex-wife realized that I was unemployable. I had started the process for disability about a year previously and was waiting for my hearing. However, as my ex-wife no longer viewed me as a “utility”, or a “success object” she initiated the divorce proceeding. I didn’t fight it, I didn’t complain, I just accepted the inevitable conclusion that my marriage of fourteen years was about to end.

Now, while I have no statistics to support my idea, I believe that when a man suffers a stroke, more women initiate divorce than when a woman suffers a stroke. This is based on the fact that what I have learned from the stroke community. Yes, this is a half-baked idea, at best, but it is supported that women view men, in general, as success objects.

So, my divorce occurred on 5 April 2013. We went through mediation rather than though the legal proceedings, and once my divorce was official that morning, I rented a u-haul trailer, loaded my things in the u-haul, and got out of Utah as quickly as possible.

I headed for my half-sister’s house in Schnecksville, Pennsylvania. And, while she wanted me there for two years, she kicked my out of her place for some unknown reason. She threw out her husband at the same time, and she claimed she was “cleaning house” or some silly nonsense like that. Nevertheless, I did in approximately two days later, got all my things from that house and moved into my mother’s house, where I lived for six months until I was awarded with SSI (disability) in November of 2013.

AT that point, I left my mothers house, and drove me and my two remaining cats, to Fargo, North Dakota.

Say what you want about North Dakota, the native North Dakotan population is, in my experience, the politest people whom I have ever met. And, with my stroke, I need to be around polite people, as a survival strategy. SO, I currently live in Fargo, North Dakota, in a really nice neighborhood. The neighborhood is safe (well, there are no really dangerous neighborhoods in Fargo), and if everything went my way, I will live here until die. Yes, this is a damn good place.

The Fargo VA hospital is a bit small, and I have had to drive to the Minneapolis, Minnesota VA for an appointment once. But this is one of the rare good VA’s that I have been in. And, for the record, the Pennsylvania VA is not very good. I would probably classify it as bad, if pressed. But, well, I love the Fargo VA hospital.

Now, I don’t know very many people in Fargo. I don’t go out and about much. I go for walks every day in the Spring/Summer/Autumn, and I go for a walk about once a week in the Winter, but I don’t actually talk with people. This is because I am a stroke survivor, I know I am a stroke survivor, and I don’t want anyone to know that I am a stroke survivor.

Pre-stroke, I was brilliant. Post-stroke, I am somewhat dim. And I know that. Maybe no one else knows that, but that doesn’t matter, the important thing is that I know that.

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About Kevin Benko

I'm a fifty-something generic humanoid sack of water and meat.

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