Friday, January 31, 2014

Worries, Fears and Blessings.

There is something wonderful in my blog posting today.  Over the past couple weeks I have been filled with dread, fear and worrying.  About 2 1/2 weeks ago, my optometrist told me that he was concerned about some swelling of my optic nerve. He said it was caused by extra pressure in my brain and he really wanted me to go in and have it looked at by a specialist.  He told me he was worried I may have what's called PseudoTumor Cerebri.  PseudoTumor is a false tumor that mimics the symptoms of a brain tumor.  I have had migraines, dizziness and numbness for months this solidified any thoughts as to where those may be coming from. Regardless of whether or not there were other explanations for the symptoms, now I had a doctor telling me that these symptoms could all be connected and it could be a PseudoTumor...but then it occurred to me that a false tumor, mimicking the symptoms of a normal tumor...hold on now, I have the symptoms of a brain tumor.  It was a very difficult and emotional couple of weeks for me.  I fretted mostly over how I would tell my father and siblings if there was a brain tumor.  My poor father lost his mother to a brain tumor, his wife to cancer, and his father to a whole slew of problems. I couldn't bare the thought of having to tell him or any of my siblings that I might have a brain tumor...so I didn't tell them anything.  I was so scared and worried about how much it would devastate all of them if that is what the doctor said.  I just couldn't imagine what would happen. I even dreamed up a trip to Vegas to sit down with my dad and 2 of my brothers to give them the news face to face...under the guise of just flying in cause i missed them. (guess I can never use that one huh).  I figured out how I would get my dad there and how how I would work it all out...I just had to figure everything out, just in case.  I couldn't very well tell them something that big over the phone...

It is very difficult to lay in a small tub with your head
padded so it doesn't move for over an hour... just in
case you were wondering. 
So that's been my last 2 1/2 weeks.  Yesterday I went to my appointment with the specialist.  Dr. Patel is a Neuro Ophthalmologist with the Dean McGee Eye Institute at OU.  He did my exam and looked at my eyes and talked to me about my symptoms... and then he said, okay, I need you to get an MRI immediately, today if at all possible and then we will schedule you for a spinal tap and then start you on medication.  The MRI was to rule out a brain tumor. The spinal tap is to test the pressure and screen the cerebral spinal fluid in my brain... YAY for me.  I think it was the urgency he sent me for an MRI that really got me even more freaked out.  I was pretty convinced between about noon yesterday and 8 am this morning that I had a brain tumor.  Justin wasn't. He seemed pretty sure I was fine. Regardless of my worries yesterday, I knew that everything would be okay, no matter what the results were of the MRI. I told a friend that regardless of what I found out, I was going to be okay.  We would work through whatever we found out and everything would be okay.

So when the phone rang this morning and the Caller ID read an OU number I tried to stay calm...but I wasn't at all... The doctors secretary said: Ms Clayton Dr. Patel would like to speak with you do you have a minute to talk with him now.  I said yes and she said okay, just a minute.  Then Dr. Patel picked up the phone and told me he got the results and the everything came back normal.  He then went into the explanation of what comes next, the spinal tap getting scheduled, a follow up downtown and medication started after the spinal tap.  It didn't matter much to me what he said after the MRI was normal. My brain is good!  I don't have a brain tumor.  I don't have to figure out how to tell my family that.  Telling them it was normal would be easy.  I took a few deep breathes and listened to all the doctors instructions and then send Justin a text to let him know it was clear.  "Told ya" was what he had to say. 

As I shared the good news with the people I needed to share it with it was reassuring to realize that I had a long list of people to notify, because it meant that I had a lot of people that cared for me.  And had it been the worst case scenario, I knew I would have been well taken care of.  It is amazing to me the caliber of friends I have here in OKC and every where that were concerned with what was going on.  I am so glad to know that i have amazing people around me.  If I don't get to live close to my family, I am so grateful that I am blessed with amazing people that love and care about me. Those who thought about me and prayed for me and watched my kid most of the day yesterday and ran me all over town to doctors appointments and sent me messages by text and email to let me know they were thinking about me.  I have truly amazing friends around me, so thank you to you all.

And just for comedic affect... here is an awesome clip sharing my sentiments exactly!



So rest assured... IT'S NOT A TOOMAH AT ALL!!!!

Incidentally, I should explain the actual results as we know them right now. I do have swollen optic Nerves.  As of right now the assumption is that I have Pseudotumor Cerebri. We will not know that for sure until AFTER the spinal tap which as of right now isn't officially scheduled yet. At the spinal tap they will measure the pressure in my brain and spinal cord as well as run some other tests on the actual cerebral spinal fluid. They will test for meningitis and other infections that could cause increased pressure (Just to make sure).  There is still not a ton known about what I have, but like I said the assumption is Pseudotumor Cerebri (PTC).  Once I have the spinal tap I will begin taking a medication used to treat Glaucoma, which helps to reduce the production cerebral spinal fluid.  This will decrease the pressure.  Best of all, one of the best ways to treat PTC is the loose weight if you are overweight.  Since I am 6 pounds down since starting weight watchers last week, I am counting myself on the right track for it all.  Its amazing what random extra 20 pounds can do to your brain!  Glad to be on the right track there. 

Its all a long drawn out explanation and a long drawn out process of figuring it all out, but I have a few extra blessings to count today and I am so glad to be able to count them. Thanks to anyone who thought about me, prayed for me, whether or not you know what was going on.  Thanks to you all!  And thanks to everyone that helped me yesterday with various things throughout the day!

1 comment:

Mandi Rolfe said...

Glad everything turned out to be okay! Brain tumors are so scary. You are truly blessed!!