As many of you know, Aliza is back in a difficult place with ongoing complications from her stroke. In late July, the day after that last TraniWreck show (which she felt so great about and grateful for–thanks to all who performed and watched!) she developed an infection and as a result had to have her skull prosthesis removed. As a result of that surgery, a lot of her post-stroke symptoms have come back: her aphasia is pretty bad and she’s having a hard time using her right arm, leg and foot. Talking and walking are difficult again.
This is, needless to say, a huge bummer. Aliza is now facing the same intense symptoms she had in the wake of her first and second strokes. We all know Aliza is incredibly strong and a major trooper, but this third round of heavy-duty symptoms is a physical and an emotional challenge.
I’m writing because Aliza needs your help again. You’re included on this email because you offered support and assistance to her in the past. It can be hard for friends and family to face this kind of repeated illness, but the fact is that Aliza needs a lot of support right now—both logistical and emotional. I know that she would deeply appreciate your presence in her life at this point.
Some ways to help include:
-Just checking in. We know Aliza is a very social person, and right now she’s fairly home-bound. Letting her know you’re thinking about her—through Facebook comments, phone calls, letters, etc. —would do a lot to buoy her spirits. Some of you live far away, so this is an easy option to reach out. Please know, however, that she might not be able to respond to all comments or always pick up the phone (aphasia makes this really hard at times) . But rest assured your words mean a lot to her.
-Visiting. Making a plan to spend some time with Aliza can help lift her spirits. Also, if you’re willing to help out around the house or with errands, that would be a huge help. Aliza’s mobility and her energy are pretty limited right now, so things like washing dishes, doing laundry, etc. go a long way toward helping make her daily life tolerable, and hopefully help her not to overexert herself. To set up a visit, just call Aliza. Calling between 10-6ish is best, as talking on the phone gets harder in the afternoon/evening.
-Food. Preparing food is really difficult as Aliza’s can’t use her right arm. If you can make extra and drop something off for her, or find some other creative way to help nourish her body, that would be amazing. Aliza can’t have any gluten, including wheat, oats, barley, rye, I think that’s it, but if in doubt please check with her. Also she is mostly vegetarian, although she does eat fish. As with visiting, just call Aliza to figure out a drop-off or ask questions . Calling between 10 and 6 is best, as talking on the phone gets harder in the afternoon/evening.
Dora in particular has been working with Aliza to build sustainable support systems (in-home professional support, transportation, etc) but the fact is that community support will be essential to Aliza’s emotional and physical health for the next several months as she weathers another difficult period. If you can help in any way I know it will make a real difference to her well-being.
Please spread the word if you know of other people who care about Aliza and would like to help!
Susanna and Dora