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Re: Calling in for sickness

From: Graeme St.Clair
Subject: Re: Calling in for sickness
Date: Sun, 21 May 2017 13:11:38 -0400

Stroke: been there, but I think not so bad as yours. Probably superfluous advice, but do take your rehab work seriously - when I was doing that, I saw so many people who just seemed to be going through the motions. I found my right hand suffered the most (of course, I was and am r-handed!), so getting my writing hand going again was important, tho it took about 3 months - my writing now has a bit of a tremor, but is recognisable again as my handwriting.

One of the things that would have been useful, but was not exercised, was simply pouring - milk, coffee, whatever. Also, grasping with the bad hand is OK, because you quickly learn to be careful, but letting go of something *also* needs care - I've lost count of the number of times I've nearly dragged something back off the shelf I just put it on. Yes, you will likely need to use a handrail on stairs. I've found it most convenient to walk around the house barefoot (my foot Dr doesn't like this!), but this does make steps a little tricky. Some kind of footwear makes stairs a lot easier.

The subtlest effect was on my voice - I can no longer whistle (! - and I used to be good at it), my singing voice (bass), which was pretty solid even at low volume, really now only sounds good at 'f' or above - lost 2 or 3 top notes too. I should probably have paid more attention to the various tongue exercises that were given.

HTH, with very best wishes for a good recovery, GFStC, Altoona, PA.

-----Original Message----- From: David Kastrup
Sent: Sunday, May 21, 2017 5:38 AM
To: Thomas Morley
Cc: lilypond-devel ; address@hidden
Subject: Re: Calling in for sickness

Thomas Morley <address@hidden> writes:

Dear David,

2017-05-15 18:42 GMT+02:00 David Kastrup <address@hidden>:

Hi folks,

had a sort of apoplexy and will not be able to do anything while
recovering.  I am hospitalized at the moment, CRT and MRT did not show
any specific anomalies but my right side is hampered and I cannot yet
swallow or cough which is sort of inconvenient.

terrible news.

I wish you all the best and I hope you'll get better soon.

Hope this gets to you.

With one day delay.

I set the computer up to send the message on Monday and handed it over
but wasn't successful at first attempt.

Now out of the hospital for a few days, then I'll be into "Reha"
(physical therapy) for some weeks.

It was a stroke in the limbic region.  Mouth and left side are no longer
temperature sensitive (and there is a loss of pain in some regions
resulting in a loss of protective reflexes), motor balance is off (I
keel to the right when walking, left when crawling), smile is more
skewed than before, right face half feels somewhat rigid and numb.

Swallowing is business now or things will get stuck.  Which is
particularly inconvenient since coughing still doesn't work, becoming
more of a wheeze.

Walking is quite impaired, bicycling not yet back on the radar.

Accordion works better than feared but the right hand cramps up when
doing "weird" hand shapes typical for button accordion.  I'll probably
need to practice scales a lot.

I need to relearn some habits to deal with the changes: when walking
upstairs the first time in the hospital I glanced at a magazine in the
right hand and just went for the stairs without bothering about the
handrail.  Wasn't thinking anything really.  Quite embarrassing to
explain to the people bearing witness to the result.

The day before yesterday, I shaved again with a straight razor.  With
the reduced motor control, I expected the largest danger to be from
cutting myself.  That part actually went without a hitch: but trying to
temperate the water for making shaving foam got me to notice the
complete absence of heat sensitivity in the left hand.  Fortunately,
hospital bathroom water does not reach scalding temperatures.

Retraining motor skills in order to regain some of the lost capacities
is really exhausting, and there is a bit of competition for brain space
after the small section shut down: as some things get a bit more back on
track, others not obviously related take a hit (like the cramping-up
business when playing accordion, also developing in some other
departments).  So one needs to fool around a lot in order to keep
capacity loss in check and balanced with ongoing interests and

Hopefully I can be back soonish.

Please, take your time (_and_ some more) to recover, I don't want to
see you here before !!

Even now before formal physical therapy I don't have that much time I
can spend with the computer since an hour sitting down is an hour wasted
for getting the new brain stem configuration rewired before it settles
down again.  And even if I considered computer work my top priority:
I need to get enough physical capacity back in order to be able to
integrate some exercise regimen into my daily life or the next
comparable incident is bound to stop the computer work short as well.

So in short: I need to ask you to hang in with me while I regain my
footing here.  I won't likely be able to contribute anything timely or
of significance until the end of physical therapy (facilities for that
are far enough away that I'll have to sleep in).

After that, I should at least be available again for some guidance in
programming matters (I managed to glance over the user list yesterday
and noticed several threads which might have warranted some reply from
me in order to move to the best track for a satisfactory solution
dealing with the users' needs but have to postpone for now).

There are some things I want to finish work on, but I think that the
next point will be for me to branch for 2.20: I think that even with the
current situation, it makes sense for me to try shaping the final
efforts once I am back at the desk.

I'll have to take score of everything that has been done without my
attention in place (which does include some past work) and decide which
parts would be more prudent to revert in the branch for the sake of a
stable release.

So now would be a good time for documentors and translators to step up
their efforts.

Thanks for all your efforts, and for your understanding, for your words
and deeds of support, and for your contributions in making LilyPond
prosper as a great piece of Free Software for articulating beautiful

David Kastrup

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