Yes, recovery from brain surgery is an uphill climb that’s exhausting, but it’s worth the trip. For those of us who have experienced having a brain tumor, life is precious. Each life event that we experience post-treatment is a gift. When I found out I had a brain tumor, it wasn’t my past that passed before my eyes but my future. Would I be here for my daughter’s wedding. Would I meet my grandchildren?
Our brains are vulnerable. Our brains map who we are. Having it invaded is very personal. Recovery is a steep climb for every one – a hike up a hill for some and a mountain climb for others. All we can do is take it a day at a time, experiencing progress in some areas and setbacks in others.
There are incredible support systems with people who are happy to share information. While our families step in to provide immeasurable support, we also benefit from one another. There are amazing communities of people in local support groups, on Facebook, and in forums that have a unique sense of humor and compassion. We have learned to laugh at life even as we are in pain. We can make jokes about the awkwardness of not hearing many things. We share tips for keeping a dry eye healthy or a compromised balance system functioning.
What I learned as I’ve healed is that, as in anything, the future “you” is still undefined. Recovery takes time and patience. We are in a society that expects instant results. I expect instant results. Instead I’ve frequently felt like a human pin cushion. I’ve had more needles in me in the past five years than a porcupine has twills. Through it all though, I’ve connected with family and friends in ways that I otherwise would not have.
It is my journey of LIFE, but I’ve got great company.