noun ~ one who lives through affliction
verb ~ to remain alive; to carry on despite hardships or trauma; persevere; to live; persist; to cope with a trauma or setback; to outlive
Considering the definitions above it's safe to say that I am a survivor. I can add 'spinal detethering survivor' to my growing list. But wait ~ since I have avoided brain surgery does that make me a 'brain surgery survivor?' Those of you who have had brain decompression probably totally don't agree with me at all ~ and I totally understand where you are coming from. It's a right of passage!
The old survivor guilt feeling is creeping back again ~ I know ~ it sounds narcissistic ~ but I know this feeling. I felt it when my brother died when I was two years old. Why was I left here on earth to live and he died? Then again I felt cheated when my labor/delivery of my first child ended in an emergency c-section to save both of our lives ~ again ~ I survived a near death experience ~ but felt cheated out of going through the whole natural child birth experience. That's a HUGE right of passage ~ I was up for the challenge ~ but God had other plans for me.
This brings me to today ~ it's been exactly one month since my spinal detethering. They knocked me out ~ opened up my back ~ exposed my spinal cord ~ detethered me ~ then I woke up. Alive ~ survived ~ again. I spent 17 months preparing myself for the decompression brain surgery that was scheduled for March 7, 2008. I was ready to hunker down and just muster through it all. Then ~ all of the sudden ~ my surgery has been canceled and I don't have any more Chiari symptoms! Just because I don't feel the effects of my dear brain tail doesn't mean it's gone ~ it's still there, but now it's fully hydrated and happy. My brain tail has received a last minute stay of execution from a call from the governor ~ so the brain tail has survived a near cauterization! Survivor
You can dismiss my post as the rambings of a fully hydrated brain tail ~ me, I am pondering my responsibilities as a survivor and how I can give back others who are going through hardships and trials.