Crystal has been struggling with a brainstem cavernoma symptoms/bleeds for several years now! When she contacted me, thru my "Brainfart Facebook page", she told me that she has been told "inoperable" and, like I did at first, had just accepted it! I may of encouraged her not to accept that fate, but she would of never gone this far without her courage and amazing determination. First, she found a doctor that studied under Dr.Spetzler at the Mayo Clinic, in Florida. Then, she moved herself and her daughter, left her beloved church and friends, to Florida, to be closer to her new doctor. That Neurosurgeon did offer the surgery, and even tho he was skilled and confident for it, her symptoms have kept getting worse, and she decided to send her Scans to Dr.Spetzler. He came back with an offer for surgery as soon as she wants, no more waiting!!!
Friday, April 11th, 6am. Crystal is on her way to Phoenix right now! She is to have her pre-op tomorrow, for Friday' surgery! Please pray for Crystal as she lays her life in the hand of Dr.Spetzler. Pray that she feels complete peace. I can't say how important that is enough. It is so hard to go in for a surgery that you know will change you, but you just dont know how... The will to survive and climb your way back up is amazingly strong, but it is little to compare to the desire and need to feel complete peace.
As I saw Crystal go courageously into her Journey to be pro-active for her own health, I was so proud of her, and still am. She thanked me so many times...made me cry with her sweet words, too. That is when I realised that I may of felt helpless and insignificant many times, but I dont need to win a Nobel price, or have a high paying job, to make a difference in the world. Just be doing something so small as to encourage someone, can make a impact on someone's life... in return, they do the same, and that person does the same, and so on. It just makes me want to help more and more people. Find even more ways to reach out. I want people to find Dr.Spetzler right away when they type into google "Cavernous Malformation in brainstem" or "Brainstem surgeon". It makes me so sad that people have to dig, dig, and dig some more!! I am happy that they find him thru this blog, but I want them to find him easier than that. I want all of Neurosurgeons to know about him, and to stop telling people to go home to die, but to say "But, there is a Surgeon in Arizona that takes on cases like yours" Why dont they do that, why??? That's another post....
Crystal is beautiful, inside and out. She has an amazing Mother and family member to support her, a loving "new" church that welcomed her dearly, and friends that care deeply about her. She is a single mother to a beautiful little girl who is to turn 9 at the end of the month. She is worried at the idea of her mommy not being back home for her birthday.
Let's just pray for a great surgery outcome, no permanent deficits, peace for Crystal, her mother, her daughter, and all her loved ones. I know she will do great. At Barrow, a nurse told me that Brainstem surgery patients were of the most resilient, happy, positive people she has ever worked with. Simply because to choose to have this surgery, knowing you will lose functions, temporarily or permanent (or both), you simply have to be one of these people. Now, i know people who didnt choose it, and were blessed to have a great surgeon to do the Emergency surgery when they needed it, but i can tell you that I have never been around a bunch of funny, positive, crazy people, as I am with my group of Brainstem surgery survivor. hahaha We have down days, but we sure know how to laugh.
Crystal is one of them, which is why you never heard me ask "please pray for a positive attitude" because its already there. However, Peace, Peace to keep the good spirit despite the pain, struggles and uncertainty, is everything. Without Peace, it is incredibly hard to remain calm and happy in a situation like this. Hope? We have hope. We have plenty of it. Faith? Would it surprise you that every single person that reached out to me, found Dr.Spetzler and had surgery, are strong believers? I find it amazing... This is not a spiritual Blog. But my faith in God is clear. I dont preach to those reaching out to me either, but it happens that everybody is a beleiver! If yourself do not believe in God or the power of prayer, I know that you will think of Crystal, and anybody that I share about. Send them what you do best, thoughts, vibes, whatever it is. I know you have and will continue to do so.
Like her Facebook Page: Crystal Crazy Cavernoma, to keep up to date with her progress!