Archive for February, 2003

Cause and effect

Thursday, February 27th, 2003

Each of us in our own way faces each day and seeks to get better. We are all different. Some of us will take longer and some not so long to accomplish similar things. The operation has affected all of us in different ways: sometimes our balance, our face, our senses, and many other things too. Yet in our differences we have a common bond both in affliction, in place, and in time. We all have different family, friends and acquaintances to help us. And we’ve come to realize how important each and everyone of those varied relationships are. And finally we have each other – all the surgery patients. [During recovery after surgery]

Shifting focus

Thursday, February 27th, 2003

As time moves on, your focus changes. It’s as if you’re going to get a injection at the doctors. You try to concentrate on something else to not feel the prick of the needle. But in the end all your senses are heighten. You can’t help but focus on that one area. You pinch yourself somewhere else to override that focus. Yet you still feel it.

Leading up to surgery, your focus also changes. You’re heading down an unknown tunnel. Once committed the wheels of the process grind away. From travel plans to preparatory doctor office visits. The operation is just around the corner. All that exists is the upcoming operation. Then into the tunnel you go. And hours later you’re on the other side. You return to the light and sounds and the world again. But you’ve changed.

Now your focus shifts from the surgery to yourself. Each daily routine, each step, each reminder of being human is heighten. You chat, you talk, you express what has changed to whoever will listen. You contemplate what will be. You hope. You realize your weaknesses and your needs. You cry for what will no longer be, and give thanks for what remains. You hold those near and dear to you. You begin to understand that your caregivers and supporters are your lifeline back to the real world. And the changes continue.

Very slowly your focus moves on. From yourself to the bigger world around you. To interacting with others. To helping those who are acquaintances, co-workers, friends, and family. To listening to those whose focus is on their unknown tunnels, and to those just on the other side of one. To worrying about them. To working. To living. To being back in the real world. [On before, during and after brain surgery for an acoustic neuroma]