Thursday, February 05, 2009

The Surgery Story

OK. I have had some requests for the brain surgery story, so - here goes!

When I was thirteen years old I started having strange episodes when I would get a little dizzy and have sort of heavy breathing. As this was happening, I also got pictures in my head of people or places that seemed familiar to me - but as I thought about it I realized they were only familiar from other episodes. Needless to say, I thought I was weird. I never said anything about these events to another person for fear they would think I'm crazy, too.

Fast forward about ten years.

I was now a "professional" woman, working with customers, and I realized these episodes might become a problem. Whenever one of them occurred I had to concentrate very hard to continue paying attention to what was going on around me. If I let myself, I could just "check out" for a minute or two and come back to reality when the pictures were gone. I didn't want to be with a customer, space out, and then ask a question which had just been answered 30 seconds ago. So when I went in for my annual check-up, I mentioned these incidents to my doctor.
Honestly, I thought maybe I had poor iron or low blood sugar. I really didn't think it was going to be a big deal. I just wanted to take care of the little problem before it became a real problem.
But my doctor said those episodes sounded like seizures to him, and sent me to a neurologist.
The neurologist confirmed my doctor's suspicion and for the next seven years I tried various anti-convulsants in different doses, but nothing controlled the seizures. Ultimately, my neurologist said no drug was going to work. Though I had never had a grand mal seizure he said there was no way to guarantee the little ones wouldn't become big ones, and he recommended brain surgery.
At first I thought the idea of brain surgery was crazy, but as we consulted with doctors it just made sense.
I went through lots of testing and monitoring in preparation - including one test when I had half of my brain "put to sleep" at a time and then had to perform various tasks. That was fun!
On January 30 or 31, 2003 (Can't remember exactly which day...) I had one surgery to have electrodes implanted directly on my brain. These electrodes allowed the doctors to monitor my seizures and find the exact part of my brain from which the seizures originated. Then, on February 12 I had another surgery in which they removed a portion of my brain about as big as the tip of your pinky finger. And with the removal, I gained a great excuse for whenever I do stupid things. Give me a break, I don't have a whole brain anymore! LOL

In the end I realized the whole ordeal really wasn't about me or my seizures. It was about God being glorified. I had so many opportunities - to share my faith, to pray for other people, and to trust in His care for me - that I would not have had if it weren't for my situation. Once again, God showed His goodness and power to me very intimately.
And the bonus is - I have been seizure-free ever since the surgery!

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10 comments:

luvmy4sons said...

Wow. What an ordeal. So amazing that it worked. As a nurse I have seen TERRIBLE stories about seizures and brain surgery. God was surely with you! Thanks for telling it. You are a walking miracle. I get an excuse too when I do stupid things...see I don't have all the blood supply to my brain since the accident with the tree...missing one artery! I am a half wit-TRULY,well, a 3/4's wit anyway! LOL!

Stacey said...

Wow, what an incredible story. And, as always, you give God the glory :) So glad you've been doing well ever since.

And I don't have an excuse for my strange behavior....but I have been blessed with friends and family that love me regardless! LOL. Have a splendid day!

realworldmartha said...

That is so amazing! What a blessing it was resolved.

Chatty Kelly said...

That is AMAZING! Wow. Thank you for sharing that. Brain surgery - just incredible! Probably your brain was just too big before, and now you're like the rest of us. LOL!

Leah said...

What a neat story!! I love how you glorified God in the midst of such an ordeal. Isn't it wonderful to know that He is in the middle of everything that happens to us--we just need to look for Him.

Leah

kreed said...

Wow! Who knew?!?! Well, you did, I guess! Glad you are seizure free - Praise the Lord!

Jessica said...

So glad all is well with you now! I had no clue seizures could cause something like that. Interesting. Did they ever say why that happened?
It must have bee scary, but like you said, what an amazing way to glorify God. :-)

Slowly Dying 2 Self said...

How awesome of you to share "your" story and knowing that it was for God's glory.

smooches,
Larie

Amanda said...

Oh my goodness!!! What an amazing experience!! I am glad you are Ok! What a powerful testimony to God!

Many blessings-
Amanda

Happyhome said...

Wow! What an encouraging testimony. Great reminder that He WILL be glorified in our trials.