The Power of Gratitude for Stroke Recovery

Stroke recovery for Dave Kim

Classical music has been a part of Dave Kim’s life since the age of four, when his father, who was a warden, would require that he practice for four hours a day. This discipline and dedication led him to becoming the first five string electric violinist to perform in the San Francisco nightclub dance scene. For decades, he’s lived his greatest passion by playing his music with DJs from all over the world.

While it’s Dave’s innovative sound that typically inspires his community and fans, recently, it’s been his strength and spirit. On August 18, 2016 Dave suffered a stroke that left his right arm and leg paralyzed. Friends recently started a YouCaring fundraiser for Dave, in order to alleviate financial stress at a time when he cannot work and needs to focus on recovery.

In a recent article about him in the Huffington Post, Dave says, “When I woke up in the hospital, I kept thinking, ‘Am I ever going to be able to walk again, kite surf, play music or play with my kids?’ Suddenly, all of those thoughts turned into thoughts of gratitude. Instead of being terrified, I looked back and realized that I’ve spent 38 fantastic years playing the violin all over the world. I’m also very thankful that I’m a dad and have been able to raise my two sons. Suddenly, everything turned into gratitude.”

I met with Dave a few weeks ago at his home in San Francisco and asked him, “what has all of this has been like?”

Dave Kim at his home in Sausalito, CA

After a deep breath, Dave responded with, “I quickly moved from a place of panic and pure terror to reaching out to my community and my faith in god…I couldn’t do this by myself. This was not something I was prepared to do. I surrendered myself and said, OK, day by day, I am going to work through this.”

As we sit in his home in Sausalito, California, Dave continues,

“I am really blessed to have been living my passion and performing music all over the world. None of us are guaranteed tomorrow and I am really grateful for the things I’ve accomplished.”

I ask him about the possibility of him being able to play music again.

“It’s really up to me. As much as I put into it, is what I’m going to get out of it. I know I am pretty far ahead for this having happened less than two months ago. The doctors are encouraged seeing me up on my feet.”

In a video Dave made on the 75th day since his stroke, he updates his community with, “today marks the 75th day since my stroke happened and I would say I am about 75% recovered.”

Dave’s phenomenal progress is a testament to the power of his attitude of gratitude and his unwavering spirit. His community has raised over $25,000 so far, and as the fundraising efforts continue, Dave works hard every day to walk again and use his arm again so he can do what he loves most, inspire the world with his music.

To support Dave’s fundraiser, please visit here.

Also, check out the Huffington Post article and Dave’s TedXSF talk here.