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What a Blessing an Accident Can Be….

Published on October 23, 2014 in Share Your Story

What a Blessing an Accident Can Be….


To All: My Story….On March 26,2009 it was raining, I was returning from a routine GYN appointment (always a favourite) in White Plains. I stopped in Port Chester to pick up something, and I proceeded home on Regent Street , just as I got to the Carvel on the Greenwich/Port Chester border (perhaps the dumbest intersection ever) I felt my car fly across the street.

At that moment I couldn’t distinguish exactly what was happening, but as the Parranderos continued to play on the radio, and I definitely was still conscious-I knew something BIG hit me. As I turned my head I saw a very large Suburban with a very young male driver plowed into the driver’s side of my car. O.K. I am alive, I can move, I’m not bleeding-go ahead girl-CRY, and so I did, as I stood in the rain blubbering lots of cars drove by honking, gawking with annoyance for the inconvenience to their commute-but nobody stopped to help-ok-anyway cops came, ticketed the kid who totally admitted to running a STOP sign, and life went on. The next day I went to work, and being the prudent and paranoid nurse that I am, I ordered myself a CAT SCAN-just in case.

So I go, and as I am in the scanner, I notice the technician seems a bit nervous and starts to act very concerned about where I was going after this test. I chalked it up to my authoritative manner and charm. Later on that night I found out that what I had was a Colloid Cyst-ok what is it? It turns out that it is a silent-almost always asymptomatic, rare brain tumor that most people die from before ever experiencing a symptom, and I have it! So I go to the neurologist who calmly tells me that my scan shows hydrocephalus (pushing of the brain to one side) and that I need to have surgery within 1 or 2 weeks. Now I’m panicked. I call my mother, my job, my sister, my friends-what the f*%k, am I going to die? I was apparently close. You see this tumor had been there for my short 39 years on this planet, and little by little it grew and insidiously was starting to kill me-needless to say I went to Yale and had the freakin thing removed!

Well 2 weeks after surgery I became sicker and sicker fever ensued, swelling started in my head-I was brought to the ER at Yale-and it was discovered that I had meningitis from the surgery-7 days in the hospital antibiotics and now steroids-great. I go home for about 10 days and guess what-I go back for the same sh*t again! So now I get Lumbar puncture #2, more antibiotics-more steroids, brain splitting headaches this sucks. So I get discharged after a few days, I go home-but I’m still not right-these headaches are killin me! The neurosurgeon doesn’t believe me, I think he thinks I’m crazy, so I end up getting yes a 3rd lumbar puncture (that wasn’t done correctly) so now I have a cerebral spinal fluid leak, a headache that may just cause me to commit suicide-and I get admitted yet again for 5 days!

But wait it gets better, so I am in the hospital on day 2, and a brand new nurse is taking care of me-she gives me a bunch of new meds, pulls out my IV that wasn’t working and than goes to lunch without replacing the IV. So in my drugged and sickened state I must have tried to get up (I don’t remember anything) but some visitor found me on the floor blue having a seizure-I am so not kidding. So now I have to go out on disability-naturally, and I go home and I wean off the steroids-which was the absolute worst withdrawal I ever (the only) experienced in my life-panic attacks, migraines, tremors, fever you name it-but I did it after 3 weeks of hell. At last, I am getting there, one night I woke up to find some blood on my face-I go to the mirror and notice a little scratch right over my incision site-hmmm vexing.

Could I have scratched it or could this be yet another complication in my all ready harrowing post operative period. Well I called the surgeon the next day, and they told me to put Bacitracin on it, after about 2 weeks it still didn’t look right, so I took it upon myself to show my dear friend Bob (plastic surgeon) this “scratch”. As soon as Bob saw it, he knew right away this was no scratch-but rather something quite serious.

I was sent immediately to the neurosurgeon who than sent me to his plastic surgeon colleague who agreed this was no “scratch” within 2 days another “scratch” developed and I landed myself once again in the hospital and in the operating room again having more surgery-this time to remove the plate, screw, and bone from my skull-which turned out to be infected! I can’t get a break. So I spend another 7 days at Yale, receive antibiotics, got a new titanium plate and I get to go home on IV antibiotics for 1 month (thank God I’m a nurse because I am administering all of this to myself!) Anyway-the point of this long horrible story is to say that no matter how bad things got or get I have never been so grateful to be alive. I have come to realize that there are people who honestly love me, and care for me-and there are people that I actually love and care for. Little stuff means nothing, anger is a wasted emotion, vanity is for suckers-and whether or not a God exists-someone or something looks out for me-Thank You.

Opinions expressed within this story belong solely to the author and do not reflect the views or opinions of the National Brain Tumor Society.

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