Days of Rest

Eight days after my brain stent placement, I’m doing very well. I went back to work on Tuesday and worked four full days. I did take two 15-minute breaks a day to step away from my computer to sit and close my eyes. It did help.

Thankfully, I didn’t come back to an excess of projects that needed my immediate attention. There was just enough to test my eyes. And it was my eyes that felt it the most. After a couple days of headaches, those eased, but fatigue and eye strain weighed heavily on Friday. Based off previous non-emergency brain procedures, none of this is unexpected.

I went to bed early every night, listening to my brain and body. Sleep was welcome and thankfully my kitties let me sleep in this Saturday morning.

During the week I received two special “Get Well” boxes in the mail from family & friends back in NY. I appreciate that they took the time and spent the money to do something to help in my recovery. Tea, tasty bites, and heart-felt messages remind me I’m not forgotten and I welcome the support.

I won’t know for SURE if the stent is secure and stable for another six months when I’ll have ANOTHER angiogram. In the meantime, I’ll continue to live each day, try to take care of myself, and be careful to avoid any injuries.

As we celebrate Easter tomorrow, I too, celebrate another battle with this brain aneurysm with hope, renewal, and new life with more brain bling.

Back at Work

I eased my way back into work today. Sitting in front of the computer was something I hadn’t done since last Tuesday. I took a 15-minute break in the morning and the afternoon to step away and close my eyes which helped, but I was still feeling it by the end of the day. Not painful, just pressure and my eyes ached.

It wasn’t a busy day, so that was helpful and my co-workers were gentle with questions and communication. I’m very lucky to work at such a great company that allows you the time to recover. I’ll see how I’m feeling tomorrow morning. Since I now work from home, at least I didn’t have to do the 60-mile round trip drive.

My non-brain related eye thing is also doing better. Left eye still purple, but the swelling has gone down and the cut, although still a wee bit raw, is healing nicely.

I’m only a week out from a brain procedure, so I should cut myself some slack and listen to my head and body and rest.

Day 4 Update

I should have listened to my own advice and learned lessons from previous brain procedures. Rest, rest, and listen to your body. However, I felt a little better yesterday (Sat.) so I did more, which in turn, I am paying for today.

Yesterday my head pain wasn’t as bad, so I tried to wean off the Tylenol. I only ended up taking one all day. But that also meant I:

  • Made my own big breakfast
  • Took a shower
  • Walked (slowly) inside for 15 minutes
  • Lots of blogging, TOO much blogging
  • Sat up watching a lot of TV
  • Put dinner in the oven

I did take a nap or two, but I should have only done one or two of the list above and not all.

Day 4 Update

Overall I’m doing very well 4 days after the flow diverter deployment. That sound like a space vehicle segment. “T-minus four hours to flow diverter deployment.”

Head pain has been hit and miss depending on how much I’m doing. I removed the dressing on the groin incision site yesterday after showering and the plug site looks very good. Not even any bruising, which is great. It is still tender, but getting better. None of that is unexpected.

When I left the hospital on Thursday, I was experiencing some pretty strong abdominal muscular pain. I had no idea where that came from and it made sitting, standing and moving in bed quite painful. Thankfully, it finally feels like that is easing up. I must have had a minor muscle pull that was self-inflicted. I did speak to the Dr’s office about it on Friday.

My balance is still a little wobbly and I’m doing everything very slowly from sitting down, sitting up, turning around and walking. Sudden movements cause a stir and bending over is rough. Everything brings on fatigue.

It has taken me about 5-6 hours to feel decent today as a result of the activities yesterday. Pretty good head pain and discomfort around face, ears, and neck. So it’s back to the two pills of Tylenol every six hours. The good, old-fashioned ice pack I bought is really coming in handy and feels great.

My non-brain related eye injury from the cat isn’t quite as black as it was, but still pretty purple. There is some yellowing on the actual eye ball on my OPPOSITE eye, which I’m a little concerned about, but we’ll see if it’s still there tomorrow. The cut itself is healing nicely.

Please Note: I AM seeing all your comments on Facebook and the blog posts. I just can’t reply to all. I do have to go in and approve many of the comments on WordPress when I see them before they show up. But I wanted you to know I DO see them and I am extremely grateful for all the love , prayers, and support. THANK YOU!!

FYI: These posts are half typed and half using the terrific keyboard dictation feature

Realities & Fears

FYI: These posts are half typed and half using the terrific keyboard dictation feature.

One thing I’ve realized in the last 15+ years of hospital stays with my brain aneurysms, is that a hospital gown, or Johnny as they are referred to, is the great equalizer.

When wearing the gown, no one knows how rich or poor you are, your political leanings, the internal trauma you have endured, and for how long. It’s the costume of reality in a hospital. The Johnny doesn’t care.

The richest most powerful woman in your state is essentially just another patient like the young man who washes dishes at a restaurant laying next to her. The opening at the back of a Johnny not only displays our backsides, but also exposes our extreme vulnerabilities while staying in the hospital.

Any modicum of modesty is thrown out the window as one relinquishes personal “duties” to the nurse working your room at the moment. God bless them ALL!

There was a woman and her teenage daughter in the waiting area for admissions when Dave and I arrive. The older woman had MS and her daughter had cerebral palsy. They both required assistance walking and the daughter had communication issues.

Having one person with a disability in the family can be challenging enough, but I had tremendous amount of respect and empathy for this woman and her daughter dealing with daily struggles to live a “normal” life. And the mom was upbeat, chatty, and smart.

Observing this woman and her daughter maneuver the hallway and communicate with the hospital staff was a swift dose of potential realities for the brain procedure I was about to undergo in a few short hours.

Although I had a tremendous amount of confidence in the staff and doctors here at Maine Med, it IS still the brain and there is aways some potential for something unexpected to happen.

With the only other exception being the heart, if something goes wrong during a procedure in the brain, it can effect the rest of your life in a dramatic way. Just what we needed to see before heading up to pre-op.

My fears dissipated after speaking to my doctor before the procedure and I was ready to get this over. I knew whatever came from it, that Dave and I could handle it.

But I’m still not a fan of the Johnny, however.