Jill says she eventually realized she had to call for help. The only problem was that the part of her brain that understands numbers and making phone calls was the part that was damaged by the stroke. "'911' was swimming in a pool of blood," Jill says. "That was right where the site of hemorrhage happened."
Calling for help became a four-hour process, Jill says. First she found a co-worker's business card. "I put the business card next to the telephone pad and then I matched the shape of the squiggle to the shape of the squiggle on the phone pad. Then I would push that," she says. "I had to cover the number that I had already dialed because I would drift out into no consciousness of reality."
When she finally managed to dial her colleague's number, she heard him speak but couldn't understand him. "I think to myself, 'Oh my gosh, he sounds like a golden retriever,'" Jill says. Then she tried to answer him. "And I think, 'Oh my gosh, I sound like a golden retriever.'"
Until that point, Jill says, she understood her voice inside of her own brain. But when she tried to communicate with the outside world, she had no luck.
Despite not knowing what words her colleague was saying to her, Jill says she understood that he would be able to help her. "Not by the words that he said, but by the inflexion in his voice," she says. "He was soothing. He knew it was me, and he reassured me that he was going to get me help."