Recuperating Hayden holds work meeting

June 14, 1994|By Larry Carson | Larry Carson,Sun Staff Writer

After two weeks' recuperation from brain surgery, Baltimore County Executive Roger B. Hayden held a 90-minute work session yesterday with County Administrative Officer Merreen E. Kelly.

Then he set out on a 1.5-mile walk.

Mr. Hayden said in a telephone interview yesterday from his sister's northeastern county home, where he is recovering, that his stamina is returning but he still tires quickly.

"I go strong for a while, but then I've got to take a little rest," he said.

The executive is on a diet that includes red meat daily to rebuild his strength after the surgery May 23 to remove a mass of malformed blood vessels in the back of his head.

The condition, diagnosed 20 years ago, was congenital. But Mr. Hayden said after the attack that it had caused nothing more than headaches until May 8, when a blood vessel broke.

An apparent workaholic before the incident, he said he is following his doctor's orders and not pushing himself too hard.

"This is important stuff," he said several times.

His daily routine isn't terribly exciting, the executive said. He has breakfast and tries to walk early in the day either along a few back roads with light traffic -- accompanied by a family member -- or at a nearby school recreation area. He then reads a bit and watches television or sees relatives who come to visit.

"Last week I took naps," he said. But he added that in the past few days he hasn't seemed to need as much rest.

Of the boredom that can be part of a slow recovery, he said, "There are always times when you wish it would be faster."

Despite that, he said, he will not risk his health by returning to work too soon.

The 49-year-old executive plans to continue recuperating this week and next and will meet with Mr. Kelly at least once a week. Then he will evaluate his condition and decide when to return to work.

The broken blood vessel took away part of his right-side vision, a condition that he said has not improved since. Doctors told him his vision might change several times in the weeks after the operation.

Mr. Hayden said reading is difficult because of the vision changes but that he can watch television.

The severe headaches he once suffered finally are gone, he said, though the places where surgeons operated are sore.

And he's sporting a new hair style -- "a buzz cut," he called it.

The executive said he has received hundreds of get-well cards.

Mr. Kelly said Mr. Hayden was in good spirits when he and executive secretary Marina Brockman visited him yesterday.

"He was right on top of every issue," Mr. Kelly said.

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