Gifts from The Head and Heart

Well, last night was the first night in 12 days I have slept the entire night without waking up in pain every three hours. I woke up, it was still dark out and I was very afraid to look at the clock thinking it was probably 2 a.m. again but it was actually 5:30. I was THRILLED!! I slept all night and wasn’t in extreme pain.

So the start to the day was very good and I wasn’t in too much pain. Ate breakfast, took my pills and walked for 30 minutes inside. I guess putting my sneakers on makes it feel more like I’m walking than shuffling. However, after I walked, I was quite shaky and haven’t felt real good the rest of the day. Figures. I tried laying down, but couldn’t get to sleep. My head is hurting a little bit more today and I’m still feeling my jaw ache from the muscle being cut. I get the rest I need, but still don’t feel good. Oh, well…’s not quite two weeks since the surgery. I shouldn’t expect miracles overnight.

Dave, god love him, is cooking a Scottish stew for us for dinner and the house smells wonderful. I only have the mental retention for so much and at specific times of the day, so I’m glad he figured it all out.

Today also brought a pletheria of goodies delivered to the house: A wonderful set of hand-knitted hand warmers from a high-school classmate, a thoughtful exercise stability ball from friends in Boothbay Harbor, and a fabulous breakfast gift basket from a cousin in Virginia. None of these were expected, so each gift was a lovely surprise and very appreciated. Friends/family from three different states.

Because I have been through a recovery process due to brain aneurysms before both in 2006 and 2011, I guess I forget just how serious this was or could have been since I’m doing pretty well after the procedure. I forget how scary it must be for my friends and family and the apprehension they all go through FOR me. Dave has gone through so much and I am so, so very lucky to have such a loving and caring man like him in my life.

In some respects, I went through the easy part. I was OUT for the procedure and others were left to stress over me. I’m sorry they had to go through that. I guess because I’ve been through a more life-threatening experience during my rupture in 2006, these other procedures don’t seem quite as serious, even though they could certainly be. Anything regarding the brain can cause serious issues, but the faith I have in my Dr. and the staff at Maine Medical Center make me feel far more confident.

Making the decision to have this aneurysm clipped and taken care of wasn’t one I took lightly and I had to look at all my options. Obviously, since the successful clipping and learning the outer wall of the aneurysm was very stressed and thin, I can certainly say NOW that it was the exact right decision to make and I’m so glad I made it. I cannot imagine putting my family through any more right now so soon after the loss of my other sister right after Christmas. Just unbelievable all that we’ve gone through the last several years.

However scary this procedure was for me, I am damn sure I made the right decision. I AM going to take care of myself. I do NOT want to put my family through any more and I want to continue to enjoy my life with Dave. I ain’t dead yet.

Unfortunately, since 2006, there isn’t a day that goes by that I do not think about brain aneurysms and their effect on my life. I cannot dwell on it. If I did, I’d not be able to function. Thanks to the wonderful medical professionals in this state, both mental and physical, I have found ways to funnel my fears and frustrations into helping others survive and thrive. I don’t complain on every website I can find…I’m one of the lucky ones..I’m a survivor and if I can do ANYTHING to help one person get scanned, or one person get a closer look at something or feel like they’re not alone, I will have done something for those we have lost. That’s all I can do. We’re finally getting a support group started in the state, and although I don’t necessarily look forward to sharing my stories over and over, I know it will help and I know it’s also good therapy for myself to be with other survivors.

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