Since I’ll be waiting a while to find out what the mass in my head was, I figured I’d type out everything that happened to me in the last week to clear my thoughts out.
Exactly a week ago I was just arriving in Port Aransas for a vacation with my aunt, uncle, sister, and some close relatives. We had been there for merely a few hours when we decided to go out to eat at a cajun restaurant.
I remember when we left for the restaurant, I had a dizzy spell when leaving the house. Specifically, the right side of my body went kind of weak. It only lasted for a few seconds, and then I felt fine.
I remember that my mom called as soon as I arrived at the restaurant. I had sent her a care package since she was completing a four-week flight attendant course (which she passed.) Nothing was out of the ordinary there, and we talked for about five minutes.
I remember going inside, and eventually talking to one of my relatives about something (I can’t remember what) and eventually not being able to think of what to say. He was interrupted by his daughter, though, and I didn’t have to complete my thought.
That was probably a sign that something was wrong.
Very soon afterward, my gumbo came. It was the first food item to arrive at the table.
That was when I had trouble grasping the spoon. I sat there for about five minutes, wondering why I couldn’t grasp the spoon, and hoping that no one would notice. For some reason, I was embarrassed by the fact that I couldn’t hold the spoon or speak well. I eventually stopped trying to clasp the spoon, and tried to figure out what was wrong with my hand.
Eventually, I realized that something was very wrong with me. I thought that maybe it was a stroke. I got up and walked to my uncle — my leg still worked — and in the process of telling him that my arm wasn’t working, I started to lose my speech and my breath.
We shot out of there as soon as we realized there was an issue. It was just me, my aunt, and my uncle who left.
In all honesty, I was terrified that we weren’t going to make it to a hospital. Port Aransas isn’t close to a hospital, so I had no idea how long it would take to get to a doctor. Like I said, I assumed it was a stroke or heart attack, and I figured time was an issue.
I just remember pounding my chest and coughing to keep my breath.
We pulled into a gas station when we learned that an ambulance was in route. I think the other drivers were wondering why the heck we had just stopped in the middle of the parking lot.
The ambulance arrived within the minute, but I couldn’t say anything to them except for ‘no’ every so often. They gave me an oxygen tank which helped me to regain my breath. On the way they also drew some blood since I couldn’t tell them about myself.
When we got to the hospital they put me in the emergency room, and did some tests or drew some blood or something. I wasn’t really paying attention.
Within the hour the rest of my family showed up. I still couldn’t speak, so two of my cousins were somehow able to translate what I was trying to say. Luckily, they figured out that I had to use the bathroom, because that wouldn’t have been pretty.
Soon after they ran some MRI’s on me. I’m not a claustrophobic person, but I became one inside that machine.
Sometime that night was when they found the source of the problem. They called my aunt and uncle into look at the MRI’s and informed them that I had a tumor/cyst on about two-thirds of the left lobe of my brain.
They told me about the tumor, but I didn’t really didn’t grasp it.
As the night progressed, the anti-inflammatory medication that they attached to my IV started to take over and I slowly regained some of my speaking abilities.
The next morning, after not receiving much sleep, my dad showed up withBeth for moral support. At around noon a surgeon come in to tell me that they had to do surgery that day. I obviously didn’t have much of a choice if I wanted to get it out. They said that death wasn’t a risk and that they were going to try and avoid the parts of my brain that could paralyze me.
I recall crying on my way to surgery. Less than 24 hours ago, I had been fine. Now, I was about to get major brain surgery.
I don’t remember much after the picture of me in a hairnet. I assume they put me under.
I remember waking up in post-op in pain, but that was because I had just had my head sliced open.
My speech was much better as well as the movement in my right hand.
The next day, Saturday, my Pastor showed up as well as Nick and Jacob, who I hadn’t seen in two years. He lived in the Corpus area.
That same day the surgeon, Dr. Burke, came in and took off my turban and removed the drainage pipe from my skull. That’s what gave me a lovely black eye.
Eventually, as I began to wear out, everyone left.
That night was when it hit me. I had gone from perfectly healthy to seemingly near-death. I cried a lot. Mostly, because I was scared. I didn’t know what it was. In fact, I still don’t know what it was.
We got out of the hospital on Sunday afternoon, I had a blood pressure scare on Monday for a few minutes from getting in the shower, and we went home on Tuesday.
Now I wait.
I could get really scared, and sometimes I do, but there’s not much I can do. I can only wait, and try to see people.
It’s been exactly a week since I found out about this. I still don’t know if it’s entirely sunk in yet, but I can only wait. So that’s what I’ll do.