Jernej Sluga is the new president of Aphasia International Association 2019-2022.
He himself is a stroke survivor who shares his story about his ‘second’ life.
My ‘second’ life
Jernej Sluga graduated in electrical engineering and worked as a sales manager at Špica International. In his ‘previous life’, as Jernej likes to call the period before the stroke, he was a successful ice-hockey player and ski teacher. Six months before the stroke, he won a local cycling competition. One day before the stroke, he went skiing with his wife and three children.
At first it seemed he would not be able to walk or talk again. But things turned for the better against all odds. His doctor is still amazed at what Jernej has achieved driven by his iron will. Six months after the stroke he again conquered the distance he had cycled before the stroke. For four years he walked to work, an hour to the office and an hour back, although with difficulty.
He slowly began to talk again with the help of his speech and language therapist. His progress was so impressive that after a while he was even able to help other stroke patients with speech difficulties – he supervised several speech therapy sessions motivating others by his stamina and accomplishment.
Jernej still works for Špica International. He can use only one hand, but it serves him well: he can drive a car, put on his ski boots, carry his skis and even ride a bicycle, constructed especially for his needs. He doesn’t need help.