The Difference a Year Can Make!
November 2012 would forever change my life. I had an MRI of the brain and was diagnosed with a meningioma that was about the size of pool ball. It had consumed my right acoustic nerve, but I had no hearing loss. It was pushing on my carotid artery and was wrapped around my brain stem. Doctors indicated that I had about 2-3 more months before one of the two snapped from the pressure and that was it. At the time, I was only 32.
Later that November, I had surgery to remove about 90% of the tumor. Tests came back benign. Following surgery, I was transferred to the Shepherd Center in Midtown Atlanta. I had to relearn how to do EVERYTHING. Walk, talk, think, speak, etc. you name it. Not a good sign for a chemical engineering graduate from Georgia Tech. I endured radiation the months of February and March to treat the 10% that they couldn’t remove surgically due to its location. I will need an MRI every year for at least the next 10 years to confirm stability.
The awesome news is that I was fully restored to my technical job late April of 2013. Doctors said that I would be progressing well after surgery to be doing something by Christmas of 2013. I have permanent hearing loss in my right ear, some facial nerve damage, and minor double vision. My cognitive skills are back and you cannot tell by looking at me that I had brain surgery. The icing on the cake is that my wife and I just had our first baby girl mid November 2013. What a completely different hospital experience from a year ago!
I was strong in my faith prior to surgery, but I was still nervous. It’s normal human nature. God has been and always will be in control. “Thy will be done”. Truly amazing! Famous verses like Proverbs 3:5-6, Philippians 4:13, and Jeremiah 29:11-13 all were very encouraging before my surgery and throughout my recovery. However, my most favorite passage of all is Psalm 118:17-18 – I will not die but live, and proclaim what the LORD has done. The LORD has chastened me severely, but he has not given me over to death (NIV). I believed this before my surgery and throughout my recovery.
To those who are reading this – it won’t necessarily be easy and it might get frustrating at times. There is hope. My goal is to proclaim what the LORD has done. Hard work, perseverance, and trust in the LORD will help significantly along the way.