A STROKE survivor who was left unable to speak is celebrating a milestone after making a speech as his daughter’s wedding.
Bill Eales, 84, from Ringwood, suffered a stroke in October 2016 and is one of thousands of people living with communication difficulties after a stroke.
He said: “I could talk a little bit but I soon realised I had a problem. Every day in hospital they showed me cards with objects on. I knew what they were, but I couldn’t say it. It was really frustrating.
“I easily forget words and sometimes I know exactly what I want to say, but it just doesn’t come out. I once went to a coffee shop and as I went to ask for my usual order, the words just disappeared.
“The waitress impatiently reeled off lots of different coffees she could make me, but I was so confused and felt under pressure. The words just wouldn’t come out. A few days later, I used a Stroke Association card which explains that I have aphasia to inform another shop keeper when I was buying a present for my brother in law’s birthday.”
Bill attended a series of Stroke Association communication support workshop sessions which helped to build his confidence.
He said: “I’m really proud of my recovery; three weeks ago, I was able to make a speech at my daughter’s wedding. That was a huge achievement for me.”