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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

I'm Normal?

I got the preliminary results of my CT Scan today. Quote Arnold Schwarzenegger in Kindergarten Cop, “It’s not a tumor!” I was hoping, praying, that would be the outcome. Really, it’s not anything less than I expected. I’m getting the feeling I’m in the “testing because I have insurance” carnival.

When I was 18, I was in the hospital for just over a week. It started with double vision that I went to the eye doctor for. Honestly, my first thought was that I had just gotten my hair lightened and that it was some allergic reaction to the coloring process. My optometrist referred me to an ophthalmologist. That’s where one of the nurses in his office ruffled my Mom’s feathers with exclamations of “Oh my God! Oh God!” when I was taking the “can you see the red dot?” tests and some I could, some I couldn’t. Mom had issue with the lack of professionalism and scaring her child.

Yeah, Mom thought, “her child,” even though this was officially the first trauma in my life that I didn’t have to share with my parents. That was something totally new for me. I had to sign everything myself, including I had to give the doctors permission, if I wanted, for my parents to be told anything. Sure, I was working, in college and owned my first small business at the time, but I was also living with my parents. It never occurred to me that “adult” was more than being able to legally go to bars to see bands and that I could vote.

Anyway, the “oh God!” was because I was showing signs of potentially having a brain tumor! There would be many tests to come! I was sent to another specialist for an EKG and something else. That’s the specialist who put me in the hospital. I think that was also the point where I really did realize that I was a control freak. I hated that things were moving so fast and I was starting to lose understanding of what was going on. I was also regretting that going to my optometrist, since the problem started with my eyes, seemed like the logical choice, rather than my doctor. I totally trusted the doctor I had then and wished he had all the information about what was going on. He’d explain things to me.

Well, I got lucky. The resident on my floor in the hospital was awesome! He explained everything to me in plain English, from “what is this test for?” to “Why did they add a new pill?” It frustrated the nurses a little because if the little cup had more than the water pill I’d been taking since I checked in, I wouldn’t take it unless they could tell me what it was and why it was given to me. I was wheeled around for so many tests, including the first CT scan I’ve ever had. Here’s a great illustration of how perfect the resident’s bedside manner was for me. After the CT scan, he came into the room with a clipboard and a smile. He told me the results were in from the CT scan. “They looked at your bran and there’s nothing there!” Yes, that’s an actual quote from 27 years ago that I still remember because it made me smile on so many levels!

It ended up that I had a Pseudo-Tumor, caused by increased pressure on the spine. I had 3 spinal taps to get it normalized! It also took an additional 6 weeks to get my optic nerves right. Although I wasn’t seeing double anymore, my world was still bouncing up and down when I looked at it. There is still a slight flutter in my left optic nerve, which is why sometimes, if I’m tired, I’ll read with only my right eye open.

Today I called the neurosurgeon’s office to see what I could find out about the CT scan last week and set up a follow-up appointment. The follow-up is 2-1/2 weeks from now. There are no abnormalities in my brain and its time to pursue my mobility issues in another direction, in the original direction I thought we were going! I think this officially marks the first time anyone has ever called my brain “normal.” I try not to insulted by that. It just means normal shape and physical stuff going on. If it had been a written test, I wouldn’t be so normal! Besides, it was determined that there was nothing in my brain when I was blonde. So now, follow up appointment is in mid-April. See? “Normal” is not a priority!

I can say that I’m happy that all these tests say there’s not more wrong and the snail’s pace means I’ll be home for Opening Day and an undisturbed baseball marathon tomorrow and, although with the wheelchair, there is no question about David and I being able to go to the concert we have tickets for that is the Sunday before my appointment now.

And then, things start going MY WAY! :)

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