2016 was a very interesting year for me, I had just started a new job and felt like I was in a great place. Unfortunately, daily I would get migraines, which would often lead to me taking excessively much aspirin to function. I ended up going to my optometrist, thinking my glasses were outdated and a new prescription would solve my issues. My physician informed me that it seemed like I may have a neurological problem, I was then referred to another physician who eventually ordered an MRI. She then called me on a Friday morning and broke the news to me over the phone – I then rushed to get a follow up MRI the next morning; I spent the entire weekend fearing the worst. The feeling that I would hope nobody feels is that at a moment life this, there a surreal feeling of not wanting others to know you have been diagnosed with a brain tumor. Fortunately, my family was there to provide the support I so desperately needed – Especially my mother who told me “You will be fine”.
That Monday I got a call to come in to meet with who would eventually be my Neurosurgeon Dr. Thomas Steineke (who did an AMAZING JOB). He informed me that I had a sizeable Acoustic Neuroma (size of a golf ball) the good news was my tumor was benign, the not so good news was removing it would most certainly leave me deaf on my left side. To be honest, the thought of being deaf on one side never even fazed me – I knew I was extremely fortunate.
November 7th & 8th (30+Hours of Surgery) – I woke up and realized my life would definitely be different. I will not go into detail about my recovery, as I really do not like talking about it in detail… I ended up being in ICU for 35 Days + then had months of PT/OT/ST.
It has nearly been 2 years now, I am doing great. I think about my brain tumor daily, being deaf on one side is an odd feeling (like having water in your ear 24/7). You can almost feel overcome by too much loud noise around you, but I can honestly say I feel normal and I am happy. When I say normal, please do not take that negatively… for me feeling “normal” was always a concern after surgery.
Thank you so much to my family, friends, and anyone who supported me in anyway before and after surgery.