This has been my first post in a while. On March 18 around midnight, I had a strange sensation in my head. It felt like lightning struck the center of my head and radiated down through all of the veins. I felt some funny sensations, dizziness and such, and it bothered me enough that I told my roommate just in case it “turned out to be serious.”
The next morning my alarm went off and off and off. My roommate came to turn it off and found me lying in the floor by my bed. She called 911 and this crazy journey started. I’d had a brain aneurysm burst. May is National Stroke Awareness Month, thus the perfect time to share this with you.
A brain aneurysm is a weak bulging spot on the wall of the brain artery, very much like a thin balloon or weak spot on an inner tube. Over time, the blood flow within the artery pounds against the thinned portion of the wall and aneurysms form silently from wear and tear on the arteries. As the artery wall becomes gradually thinner from the dilation, the blood flow causes the weakened wall to swell outward. This pressure may cause the aneurysm to rupture and allow blood to escape into the space around the brain. A ruptured brain aneurysm commonly requires advanced surgical treatment.
I’m still learning about aneurysms, and I’m anxious to talk the doctor who worked on me those early weeks. But my mother and sister tells me that I wasn’t expected to live, much less fully recover. Today I am at a rehab facility in Atlanta relearning basic skills like walking. (I have no paralysis or permanent damage, but being in a hospital bed for a month wipes you out. When I first left Columbia for Atlanta, I couldn’t walk, stand on my own or even sit up without falling over.)
I’ll post more about my experience in the next few weeks. In the meantime, thank you for all of the love and support. I’ve received prayers visits, emails, social media messages, flowers and donations to help offset medical expenses. I’ve often said that I feel like a square peg in a world of round holes, but the outpouring of love and support I’ve received makes me realize that whatever I’m doing, I’m doing it right.
You can follow my daily progress via Facebook at MPBStrong.