Our Story

One fine day in May, Stealthy Dad went for a bike ride, towing our two sons: three-year-old G-man and his baby brother, the Cadet, who had just celebrated his first birthday. The bike trailer comfortably fits two and we expected they would soon fall asleep, as usual.

An hour after they left, a call came in. The ID said it was Stealthy Dad, but I could not recognize his voice. Did he drop his phone and did some drunk pick it up? He said he needed help and he did not know where he was. Where was he? Where were the kids? Was there an accident? I hopped in the car to try to find them, with no luck. Finally, I convinced him to hang up with me and dial 911. Within a minute, the sound of sirens led me to where Stealthy Dad and the kids were, only half a mile from our home.

Stealthy Dad had suffered a TIA, also known as a transient ischemic attack, or “mini-stroke.” He and the kids had stopped at a neighbourhood park to play. Suddenly feeling weak and unbalanced, how he got the Cadet back in the trailer I will never know. G-man stayed at his Daddy’s side. As I approached, G-man walked up and calmly said, “Daddy’s hurt. The Ambulance People are giving him a bandaid.”

A week’s stay at a specialty hospital and a gazillion tests later, no one could explain why a healthy, fit, 40-year-old man would suddenly suffer a mini-stroke. He did have chronically high blood pressure, a trait he may have inherited from his parents. From that point on, he would be on preventative meds and would need to follow a low-sodium diet.

Typical low-sodium diet plans are geared towards a more mature crowd. This diet change might be a permanent one for us, so unless I endeavored to make separate meals for the kids I was going to have to learn how to make tasty, low-sodium foods that the kids would like. We also sub in ingredients that are reportedly good for vascular health: oats, flaxseed, and olive oil.

As of this post, five months have passed since Stealthy Dad’s mini-stroke. His blood pressure is under control and our life is as back to as normal as it could ever be.

- Stealthy Mom, October 2011


  1. How scary! I'm so glad to hear your husband is doing fine. I just got a couple new cookbooks from the library - Eating Right for Your Type (my numbers are all really good but my husband's aren't that great) and Nourishing Traditions. There is so much information out there, so many different approaches to health and nutrition. It's hard to know what to believe and how to proceed.

    1. We were pretty scared for a while. It's been close to a year without further incidents. *whew* TIAs are wake-up calls that need to be heard.

      It took me several rewrites to respond to your comment. There is no easy answer, but so many opinions. I ended up with an essay, that I copied to the page called "What Drives Us." Thank you for getting me started...

  2. Got 'em coming from Amazon.... Thanks for the ideas!

  3. This made me cry. My hubby also has high BP, inherited from both his parents too. So scary, glad he is ok and things are progressing.

    1. Your kids are tiny, too. We're too young for this, right?

      After a week at Methodist in Omaha and several trips to specialists we know there was damage to the lining in a major artery. Was it the source of a clot? Was it caused by a clot? We will never know what happened. We just don't want it to happen again.

      I can tell you that blood pressure can be lowered through diet. His is still "high," but not "I-can't-believe-he's-still walking-high. Baby steps, right?

      Take care!


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