this is what happened.

by Janetha on March 22, 2011

in meals

hey guys! it’s me, janetha g, yep.. i know, i’ve been MIA. i have been on twitter on facebook but really haven’t felt up to light hearted blogging. special thanks to eden, holly & christin for sending over spur of the moment guest posts for meals & moves! love you three.

i know you guys probably all wonder where i have been and what the crap is going on, right?  well, here i am. my family hit a major bump in the road on saturday.  and i am going to tell you what happened. i am sharing this with you all not because i want sympathy or because i want to dwell on it, but because it’s a big deal and part of life. plus i want to have it here so i remember.. blogs are journals, didn’t you know?

my mom and i both agree that what happened is something that should be out on the table because there may be others out there who have dealt with, are dealing with, or will deal with a similar situation and it’s good to talk about struggles. plus someone might be able to help her. you all know that i am not one to hold back—i mean, my drugs & alcohol post and suicide post are prime examples of my tendency to put it all out for all to see.  but what happened on saturday wasn’t something that (directly) happened to me.. so i didn’t want to blurt it out due to privacy issues.

it happened to my mom. AKA momma b. AKA my best friend.


circa thanksgiving 2009.

and momma b says i should blog about it. in her words:

I want you to know that if you want to blog about this I am just fine with that because I feel like there may be someone else out there who I might be able to help if they hear my story, you can decide but just saying you have my permission and blessing to share if you want to.

SO. here it is, in a nutshell.. well as small as a nutshell as possible, that is.

saturday around 11 AM i got a call from my dad. i remember his words exactly, as they are burned into my brain forever. “janetha, honey, we are at the hospital. mom had a stroke.”

the tears started flowing as marshall & i listened to my dad explain that my mom had walked upstairs and asked him what day it was. he said saturday, thinking she was joking around.  when she looked down at her sweet new blue puma kicks she recently snagged in vegas and asked him “where did these blue shoes come from?”, he knew something was wrong. after a few more minutes of talking to her, my dad realized that she thought  it was 2008. and she had no clue as to what was going on. TWO THOUSAND EIGHT.

he rushed her to the ER where they did all sorts of hosiptal-like tests. he told me he would call when he knew more.. and we hung up.

insert a whole bunch of freaking out. like. a whole bunch of FREAKING OUT. she’s so young! only 58! she’s so fit! she works out regularly! she’s so healthy! she eats well! why, why, why, why.. times 7 million.

around 4 PM on saturday, marshall and i were able to go up to her house to see her. the hospital had released her and said her memory should slowly start returning. they diagnosed her with a transient ischemic attack (or a TIA). not as bad as a full blown stroke, but really bad none the less. luckily all her motor functions were present. she could walk, write, talk, etc.. but she sure didn’t know WHAT she was talking about. that was the scary part. we spent a few hours with her and they were the worst hours ever. she did remember what year it was, but she couldn’t remember anything short term.  she would get suuuper excited when she remembered something, but then 3 minutes later she would remember the same thing. again. and again. and again. nothing stuck. i can’t put the feeling i felt into words. it’s like my mom was there, but she wasn’t there. and i hated it. every bit of it. i will stop trying to describe it, because i just can’t.

my brother and dad gave her a blessing on saturday evening. saturday was a restless night. i prayed that she would wake up normal on sunday. please, please, please god.. just let my mom be normal. and, miracles of miracles.. she woke up and was more like herself! things were still cloudy and she had a headache.. but she remembered what you said to her. i told her it was like she was super drunk for a week solid and just totally blacked out and now was trying to remember. she’s getting better and better as the days go by, she woke up today with no headache at all.

anyway, i’ve been spending a lot of time with her—that’s where i have been. cooking and eating and just being around. she went to a stroke center here in SLC all day yesterday and she has been lined up with a really good stroke specialist. they are going to find out exactly what happened to her on saturday. it’s still up in the air. and, since she can’t remember, we have no idea how or where in the house it happened. she was in her workout clothes, but she KNOWS she didn’t workout because she wasn’t sore the next day. how awesome is it that my mom forgets a whole day, but knows she didn’t work out due to lack of DOMS. love that lady.  hopefully this doc can give us some answers as to why this happened and how to prevent it from happening in the future-or at least know what to do immediately if it DOES happen again.

i talk about momma b a lot on my blog and i know a lot of you feel like you know her and SHE feels like she knows all of YOU. we both feel like this is something that you all needed to know about so you could understand what’s going on with us. we cannot express how grateful we are for all the comments, emails, messages and whatnot you all have sent our way. and blindly, not even knowing WHY you were thinking about us. i am blown away—and i know it made a difference.

so thank you. times a million. plus one.

so now i am trying to move on from the horrible experience.. but it is a little hard for me.  it is something that will forever be on my mind and there is no escaping that. you never forget the best day of your life but even more, you never forget the worst day of your life. but for now i am going to try to come back to blogging and act normal, k? because that’s what i need. normalcy. and i know that’s what my mom needs, too, and she likes to read my blog.. so blogging as usual shall commence starting now.

last night i made up a DELICIOUS new recipe and took it to my parents’ house to devour.


chicken pot pie casserole.


i mean, did you think it wouldn’t be a casserole? you know me. obsessed.


recipe coming soon!


it was too good!! marshall had seconds, my dad had thirds and i ate leftovers for lunch today. i am sad the leftovers are gone!

one awesome surprise that was delivered to my mom’s house was this edible arrangement~


susan, danica and holly—YOU GUYS ARE AMAZING. thank you!  


we ate almost the whole arrangement last night.


the best part? the bananas covered with dark AND milk chocolate AND peanut butter inside. um. yum.


side note: looks like i need some sleep.

who needs flowers when there’s chocolate covered fruit? thanks so much, ladies! love you.


that was last night. tonight, i came home to another wonderful surprise:


elise and her husband kyle sent NIBBLERS!


so, so thoughtful. thank you elise! i took half of the cookies to momma b and they are officially almost gone. i attacked the snickerdoodles immediately. just sayin.

it blows me away how amazing blog friends are. i think we need to buy an island and all us bloggers need to move there and live there and eat cereal for the rest of our lives. deal? sounds good to me.

well, i will be back later with a less heavy post. it feels good to be back and even better to clue you all in on what’s going on with my fam. thank again for all your support.

no questions for today, just lots of love to you all!

xo. janetha g.

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Healthy Coconut March 23, 2011 at 12:25 pm

Janetha, thanks for sharing with us the details. I know it’s hard watching your mom go thru this, I too had a scare when I was in high school when my dad had a heart attack. That day change our lives forever.

I am constantly being reminded that my parents are getting older. I take my mom to her doctor’s appt every.week. It’s too hard for me to think about what the future look like as they get older and older so all I can do right now is spend as much time with them as I can and show them my love like you have done for your mom and family . so my thoughts are with you and hopefully your mom will recover soon and it can be prevented from happenning again.

Danielle March 23, 2011 at 12:29 pm

Sending you and mama B good thoughts, blessings and hugs! I hope you get the answers you need soon! (BTW, made the quinoa casserole and it rocked)

Jenny March 23, 2011 at 1:01 pm

I can’t imagine what you and your family have been/are going through. I got teary eyed reading this and thinking about if this happened to my mom. I send healing and hopeful thoughts to Momma B and your entire family! Modern medicine does amazing things and I hope the Dr.’s will be able to give you all the answers and help you need.

Jess March 23, 2011 at 1:19 pm

So sorry, I hope your mom is OK and she recovers well. <3

lauren March 23, 2011 at 1:24 pm

Keeping your entire family in my thoughts!

Christina March 23, 2011 at 1:26 pm

I’m glad to see your mom is feeling much better now! I cannot even imagine the feeling, it’s by far a worst nitemare scenario. I’m glad that you were able to be there with her throughout the week and help her as much as possible. I hope she continues to get well fast and that those docs figure out what happened!

Krista (kristastes) March 23, 2011 at 1:37 pm

Awww Janetha I am so so so sorry to hear about momma b, but I am glad she’s getting back to 100% day by day. Your whole fam is in my thoughts and prayers. Lots of hugs to you both!!!!

Sarah March 23, 2011 at 1:51 pm

I’m so sorry to hear about momma b. I’m glad that your dad figured out that something was wrong and took her to the hospital right away! You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. I hope momma b. has a speedy recovery and that you all get some answers!

jackie March 23, 2011 at 1:58 pm

i am so sorry to hear about your cute momma. i am glad to hear that she is feeling better bit by bit. keeping you guys in my prayers!

paijery March 23, 2011 at 2:07 pm

Oh Janetha I can’t even imagine what you’re family is going through right now.
I am sending you guys a billion well wishes and positive thoughts. LOVE YOU XOXO <3

Michelle March 23, 2011 at 2:44 pm

I just stopped by to catch up on your life and oh my goodness. Please know I am sending your mom and family lots of love and well wishes for a speedy recovery! xo

Gabriela @ Une Vie Saine March 23, 2011 at 3:11 pm

Oh Janetha, I am so, so sorry to hear this :( I’m keeping your mom and family in my prayers, and hoping that she keeps recovering quickly. A big hug to you!! And now I have to go call my daddy and tell him I love him :)

Erin March 23, 2011 at 3:43 pm

Hoping for a quick recovery for your mom! She’ll be in our thoughts!

cardiopizza March 23, 2011 at 3:52 pm

Thinking of you and your family! I’m so sorry to hear this.

julie March 23, 2011 at 4:17 pm

i want mamma b to read my comment because i’m literally crying thinking about this happening to deej. you and i are so close to our moms so i can’t even IMAGINE going through what you’re going through. UGH ugh ugh ugh ugh i’m so happy for you that she’s doing better!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! love you and mamma b so much and let me know if you need ANYTHING!!

thedelicateplace March 23, 2011 at 4:42 pm

whoa that is shocking! mama b get well soon! she is in far better health than my mom and i’m speechless this happened to her this young?! many many hugs to you j , and hopefully restful sleep soon! x

Brooke March 23, 2011 at 5:03 pm

I LOVE YOU JANETHA!!!!! I am so sorry this has happened and you had to go through it all, but especially that first call from your dad. It brought tears to my eyes because I know how close you are with your mom and it reminds me a lot of my relationship with my mom. I am SO happy to hear she is doing better and I started praying right when I read that tweet asking for blessings. I know she will get better because she is the healthiest and happiest woman out there!

XOXOXO you are a rockstar

Emily (cuz) March 23, 2011 at 5:31 pm

Janetha & Aunt Sue:
Wow, that was so scary to read and after I talked to my mom today and she told me what was going on I am just so grateful that she has the best doctors helping her out! Dad had a stroke several years ago and didn’t even know it! I am amazed at all you and Aunt Sue do and what amazing shape you are in, you are true inspirations to me and the women in my family :) We are thinking of you both and the whole family and sending lots of love and prayers your way! Aunt Sue, you are one tough lady, we love you and miss you both! Take care and please keep us posted on how things are going! Love, M

Bess March 23, 2011 at 6:21 pm

Janetha, I just read this post even though I had been trying to keep up from twitter, etc…I am so sorry you and your family had to go through this!! I know how it feels, my grandpa had a horrible stroke and he was an avid tennis player, exercised every morning, didn’t smoke or drink…sometimes its so confusing and we don’t know why these things have to happen…its certainly not fair! But I know your momma is gunna be okay and she’s gunna be in my prayers!!! Lots of love to you and your fam, girl!

apartmentnearchinatown March 23, 2011 at 7:02 pm

What a scare. I’m glad your dad was around and that you were able to go be with her. What a supportive family for a supportive momma! Many thoughts and prayers for your mom’s recovery. You have always portrayed her as a strong woman, so that’s how we all see her :) Take care!

Becky Hutteball Burgess March 23, 2011 at 7:05 pm

thanks for the posting Janetha. I love Sue so much. she’ll need your laughter, so stay strong. Love all of you

Julie March 23, 2011 at 7:41 pm

I am so sorry to hear the news about your mother. I am fairly new to your blog, and when I read the news about your mom, it hurt my heart. You have touched many people’s lives with you kind and caring blogs. I only hope the thoughts and prayers of your readers and friends will help you get through this time. I wish your mom a speedy recovery. My prayers are with you all.

Susan March 23, 2011 at 8:07 pm

Love ya to the moon and back JG! Relieved to hear Momma B has great doctors to get her through this. Having the well wishes and prayers of all us bloggers has got to be good for something, right??? ;)

Penny March 23, 2011 at 8:17 pm

I’m so sorry Janetha!
My mom had a stroke when she was 55. She is now 66 and has had a couple of TIA’s since her original stroke. I know how scary it is and I’m so sorry this happened to your mom.
I will keep you all in my prayers.


katshealthcorner March 23, 2011 at 8:23 pm

I love those Edible Arrangements! :D I have always wanted one!

My Grandma had a couple strokes. I totally understand.

Carla in Sydney March 23, 2011 at 8:30 pm

My thoughts are with you, Momma B and your family at this time. I am glad she is starting to feel better and I hope she makes a swift and full recovery. Thanks for sharing this….I can only begin to imagine how scary that phone call was. xx
PS: LOVE those edible blooms!!

Danica March 23, 2011 at 9:01 pm

178 comments ~ I LOVE that everyone is showing you LOVE! I so owe you an email ~ I am so behind on everything not work related this week….I LOVE you and I will catch up soon ~ promise!

I am so glad you all LOVED that arrangement and I think the peanut butter surprise in the middle is what made it stand out.

LOVE You, LOVE Momma B, Love Marisa….Ok, all of you :D

Hugs, kisses and Jay says all of the above too :)


hayleycepeda March 24, 2011 at 5:00 am

Oh Janetha I can’t even imagine…I am so so unbelievably sorry about what happened to your mom, but praise the Lord that she is doing better. I feel like your mom is MY mom when I read your posts and I know you and she are like best friends (if not, ARE best friends). I don’t know what I’d do if something like that happened to my mom, and the scary part is that they are both very healthy. I’ve been trying to catch up on your blog lately, which is why I’m so behind on this story. Please know that you’re all in my thoughts and prayers…I’ll be thinking about Momma B everyday and hoping that each day that passes makes her a little bit better. XOXO

katecooks March 24, 2011 at 9:01 am

i can’t imagine how rough this week has been for you. like you, i love my mom more than anything and would hate to see her suffering. i am SO happy that things have taken a good turn and that she has you and your family there for love and support. i’ll be thinking of you guys!

Renée March 24, 2011 at 10:01 am

I’m so sorry to hear what happened.
I know it must have been a rough week for your family, I wish you all well.
I hope your mom is doing well and continues to make a quick recovery!

Shannon March 24, 2011 at 10:20 am

wow janetha, just read this and i am so sorry to hear about momma b. i’ll keep her (and your family) in my thoughts, wishing her a speedy recovery!! {{hugs}}

cleaneatingchelsey March 24, 2011 at 10:58 am

Oh my goodness! I would be a crazy lady if anything happened to my momma. I am so glad she is on her way to getting better!

Jenn (GH) March 24, 2011 at 11:48 am

Whoa…sorry I missed this post but even more sorry about what happened to Momma B. So scary. I’m glad she is doing well and I will lift your family up in a prayer. (((HUGS)))

Alison March 24, 2011 at 3:23 pm

I am so sorry to hear about what happened to Momma B. I fully admit, I have become a regular reader and I feel like know both of you and my heart just aches for your family.

I was glad to hear that she is starting to return to normal and that you have a fantastic doctor lined up to take care of her. It sounds like a really scary experience. Hopefully they will figure this all out very quickly and keep it from happening again.

Momma B is so lucky to have such a loving and caring family to watch out for her.

Please let me know if there is anything that I can do. I live close by to many, many Trader Joe’s and would love to send you some goodies- just let me know. :)

Sending prayers and best wishes to all of you in Utah. *hugs*

Sara March 25, 2011 at 8:18 am

Clearly I’m way behind on by blog reading, but wanted to still add in my thoughts & prayers for your family. I know when I saw my grandmother slide into dementia, it was REALLY hard to watch her personality seem to drain out of her when she couldn’t remember things. It’s scary how fragile our mental state is, and how much that makes up who we are on a day to day basis. I hope Momma B recovers quickly and that your family has strength through this difficult time! <3

April March 25, 2011 at 9:57 am

I hope your mom is feeling better! Sounds like you had some good family time which is just what she needed :)

biz319 March 25, 2011 at 11:21 am

So far behind on my blog reading – glad to hear that it sounds like your Mom may be okay – fingers crossed that the dr. appointment goes well on Monday!!


Becky March 30, 2011 at 7:22 am

Hey Janetha. My heart goes out to you and your family. As I was reading your post I couldn’t stop the tears. I am so happy she is doing well. You are such a special person and a great daughter, and I know how grateful your mom is for all that you do! Just be there for each other and thank you to Momma B for sharing. I can only imagine how hard this was for all of you.

~ Becky
aka… missbeck (team Bad A$$)

Gina April 2, 2011 at 9:09 am

I’m definitely keeping your mom in my prayers! Hoping for a quick recovery! Stay strong, girl :) we’re all here for you!

Barbara Sell December 5, 2011 at 5:17 pm

My mom had a stroke on nov 16 and she cannot remember anything. I was wondering how long your mom was confused?

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