I am a born again Christian and have 4 wonderful children and am married to Jay, who grew up here in Ohio his whole life.
I am a simple girl. My husband likes to joke that I grew up as a hillbilly, and I cant say that he is wrong. However, I take it as a compliment, because Hillbillies are the happiest, most caring and courageous people I know.
|May 2013, 2.5 months Post-Op|
Before my illness, I was a cleaning lady. Right after I was first diagnosed, I had to stop working, as my symptoms were making it impossible to work a physically demanding job, and my continuously confused mind was making impossible to work a "thinking" job. I know that God as a plan, and I am patient.
I was first diagnosed with a cavernous malformation in June of 2012, after months of odd and unpleasant symptoms. I started writing this blog shortly after. I then learned that my cavernoma had bled twice. All of it has really started 2 years before, when my first bleed (which is in fact a hemorrhagic stroke) went undiagnosed.
I had surgery March 1, 2013. I was initially told inoperable by numerous neurologists/neurosurgeons due to the location. With the help of the internet and friends, I became more pro active with my own health and found Dr. Robert Spetzler, an amazing neurosurgeons, who is not afraid to operate the inoperable. He is considered the best in the country, if not the world. We traveled 2000 miles to get to him, in Phoenix, Arizona, at the Barrow Neurological Institute. After surgery, I was moved to Acute Inpatient Rehabilitation where I re-learned how to walk and all that good stuff. This was the most rewarding, and oddly, one of the happiest time of my life.
I hope that in sharing my story, I can build awareness on the subject that is Brainstem/Deep brain surgeries , as it is usually labeled as "inoperable". It has been a very hard road, but I have been blessed greatly, and one of these blessing, is to be here to hopefully bring some hope that there is indeed, always a way.
I am doing well and recovered to have a very good quality of life. Something I was told was impossible. I feel great overall and have embraced the new me, which is a much better me than if I didnt have the surgery at all. The journey God saw me thru, being pro-active by educating myself, finding the right Neurosurgeon, and listening to my "guts", has made me blessed.
**Now 2017, I hit the 4 years mark. Click here to read various post surgery/recovery updates and read more detailed accounts of the permanent deficits, what is still improving, and what is not my "new normal".