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11:33 am: Brain Surgery
I'm having brain surgery on October 7th at 9 AM.

That sentence was kind of a punch in the gut the first time I wrote it. Right up until that moment I was very nonchalant about the whole thing. "Yeah, it's brain surgery but it's easy brain surgery. No worries!" And really that's still true. As far as brain surgeries go the removal of my arachnoid cyst is really very simple.

It helps that the cyst pushes right up against the skull. They don't even have to see my gray matter, let alone touch it. They'll just remove a small chunk of my skull, opening up a window directy to the cyst, peel back the top layer of the cyst itself, and then pop it to allow all the fluid to drain away.

Things I never want to hear in connection with my brain ever again: "remove skull," "peel," and "pop it."

There are risks, just like with any surgery. The biggest risk is infection, the second biggest risk is that my brain will "fall" into the hole created by popping the cyst, which could do actual brain damage but the doctor doing this has done several of these in the past and doesn't seem worried.

I'll be under the knife for four hours or so, then in ICU for one or two days. After that I'll be in the hospital for another 2-3 days. Assuming nothing goes wrong I'll then come home. Assuming nothing goes wrong (and I am, as the doctor noted a "healthy guy" so there is no reason to assume otherwise) I'll be home in 3-5 days.

There will be some physical and cognitive healing to do. The physical healing will be just the back of my neck healing up and dealing with the pain. I am certain I will be sent home with some really good pain killers and I will use them as needed.* I'm not too worried about the physical side effects, honestly. I understand it will hurt and I'm ready for it.

Cognitive, though?

I have no idea what to expect on that side of things and since the brain is largely still a mystery my surgeon couldn't really tell me what to expect beyond dizziness and trouble with my balance. Will I be able to talk clearly? Will my sight be effected? Will I suddenly only want to skip everywhere and never walk again?

Okay, that last one I could deal with.

I don't know. It'll probably be the simple stuff the surgeon mentioned and nothing more. Hopefully. I guess we'll find out.

Forward into adventure.

*I know the risks of addiction and will be very careful.


[User Picture]
Date:September 18th, 2014 06:21 pm (UTC)
I am so glad that a brain operation is now a 5-day thing. It's amazing the world we live in now.
[User Picture]
Date:September 18th, 2014 06:22 pm (UTC)
It really is pretty amazing. They're going to open my skull, poke around, close the skull, and send me home in less than a week!

At the same time, I'm like "5 days in the hospital? What the hell!? How am I supposed to be productive and help Laura with Lois if I'm stuck in the hospital that long?!"
[User Picture]
Date:September 18th, 2014 06:41 pm (UTC)
You are supposed to get better so that you CAN be productive and help Laura with Lois again. And feel better and thrive, of course.

I can only imagine you must be terrified, but it sounds like a simple (and fascinating) procedure. I'll be thinking of you.
[User Picture]
Date:September 18th, 2014 06:47 pm (UTC)
In theory I completely understand that I'm supposed to rest and relax so that my healing process will be sped up and I'll be able to help Laura and entertain Lois with my shenanigans.

But theory and practice are different sometimes. Thoughts vs emotions, all that good stuff.

As for being terrified:

Kind of?

I'm worried more about the recovery than anything else. There's a bit of me that's being all "Nah, everything's cool, no worries" to hide that part of me that IS scared but for the most part I really am kind of on-the-level with it not being super scary.

Ask me on October 1st how I'm feeling and we'll see if I'm still cool as a cucumber. :)
[User Picture]
Date:September 21st, 2014 06:47 am (UTC)
Now comes the hardest part, coming up with an extremely impressive lie to tell about your new scar.
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