Friday, January 25, 2008

Before and After

I've been wanting to do this post for a while, but keep forgetting. Happenings of yesterday made me remember.

Yesterday - I was up at Walmart picking up a few groceries. As I was heading to the check out I got a sharp pain in my head. Best way for me to describe the location is it was where your head starts to curve from the back to the top. That is not near the location my tumor was removed. The tumor was in the area of my head where it curves from the back to the bottom right before your neck. What got me worried is it gave me an instant headache that was different from any headaches I normally get (I don't get headaches very often, not even when I had the tumor). It also made me get dizzy when I was checking the parking lot as I was backing out. I haven't had a dizzy spell like that in a long time now. Once I got home my neck felt stiff and sore and I started to get tired and weak. All this was bothersome so I called my neurosurgeon's office and left a message for the PA to call me back. She did, and she felt it probably wasn't really anything to worry about right now, and to just keep an eye on it. After thinking and talking with my mom about it, we think we figured out what it was. The weakness clued us in. Yesterday I had a sugary bowl of cereal for breakfast, something I haven't had in a while. And from past experiences, we know sometimes I don't handle that well. And I did remember that I had gotten hungry for lunch much earlier than normal. So I probably had a sugar rush that may have given me a mild but sudden migraine.

What was most upsetting is when the PA called, I discovered she was a new PA, and a good portion of the staff that was working for my doctor this summer is no longer there. This was still a very nice and caring person, but I liked having it where when I called, they knew who I was right away and were very personal with me.

Something else that had been bothering me is the back of my head where the surgery was performed. Right now I have a lot of pain and sensitivity in the back of my head due to all the fusing of the nerves back together. I was told this could last a long time (brushing my hair is quite painful). One of the things I was told to do to help reteach the nerves what feelings are OK is to rub and pat it back there. I've been doing this and have noticed that the bone feels odd back there. I finally remember to ask Larry to check it for me. He said it's OK. It's just where to bone was put back in and it's just different now due to the way he had to replace it.

Anyway I've been wanting to post these comparison pictures for quite a while of before and after the surgery. I just with I had some high school pictures loaded on here so you could see the before before pictures. The ones before the tumor effected me.

  • This picture was taken on vacation a little over 4 months before the surgery. You notice my head is greatly tilted. This is due to the tumor. This would happen in almost every picture I took since spring of 2001. To me it felt like I was looking straight at the camera. If someone would turn my head towards the camera properly (like when we would take family pictures), if felt like the whole world was spinning.

  • This picture was taken after Larry's work Christmas party a little over 4 months after the surgery. This is the first picture I took after the surgery where I noticed I'm looking straight at the camera without someone telling me how to hold my head.

These pictures bring me great joy because it really shows the difference my surgery has made and how important it really was to have and how God is so wonderful and has taken care of a problem that was really bothersome and embarrassing to me and one I thought I would live with my whole life.

Another rejoice. A couple weeks ago I had a first in a number of years. I walked up and down some stairs without holding on to a rail or some one's hand. I really have a new appreciation for children learning to walk. ;)

Wanted to share this more for myself than anyone else, but I hope you find it interesting and it that I am able to show more of God's glory and greatness through my experience. Have a wonderful day!!

This is how I found Flash this morning. Too funny!!


Hurtado Family said...

Wow! I notice a difference! How amazing....Its good you callded the doctors office..definitely keep an eye on things like that. It might be a good idea to write it down so you can compare and notice when things like that happen.

Worm's Woman said...

Good idea!! I think I definately will do that. How are the boys?

Anonymous said...

YAY MY TOBY BOBY!!!! You are doing so so so so much better. I am so proud of you and happy for you and excited for you, too. They seem like such small steps when looking from the outside...but I know what you mean...after my back surgery it was like that, too. You just keep being thankful for every small little thing and never stop being grateful for what you have been given. I know I am glad you have been given it!!!