Paul Berger shares:

I understand numbers and can read them, but it is hard for me “catch” them when spoken. For example, if you tell me your phone number, I may only get half the numbers. But if you write it down, I will be able to call you. My speech therapists explain that this is part of my stroke-related aphasia, a problem with processing the words.

Before my stroke, I never realized how much our daily conversation uses numbers, numbers, numbers! The cost of things, the weather forecast, the time of an appointment, the date to meet for lunch, and the score and plays in a baseball or football game.

I try to practice every day to improve my ability to catch numbers:

* I listen to the weather forecast and the stock market numbers (the Dow Jones) on the radio in the
car. I try to remember the numbers. Then when I return, I check the numbers on the computer or TV.

* When I’m watching TV with Stephanie, and I hear numbers, I’ll write them down and ask her if I’m
correct.

* Recently, I was in a local government office where you take a number and wait your turn. The
number board was not working, so I asked the person sitting next to me to help me listen for my
number. I was anxious while I waited, and happy that I heard my number correctly when they called it.

Many stroke and aphasia groups play “Bingo” — also a good way to practice listening for numbers.

If I can do it, you can do it too!

Other insights and tips for coping with life and taking control of your recovery after stroke are available on my website Stroke Survivor .