April 2nd, 2019
This was my first day back to work from a 15 week maternity leave. Although, I was very grateful for being able to take all that time off with Brooklyn, it did not make going back to work any easier. I know Jax and Brooklyn were in great hands, but I was nervous because I had never left Brooklyn for more than two hours. As I was sitting in an education class at work, I missed a call from my doctor. I had to go pump, so I checked her message and she said she had hoped to catch me and had to leave for the day for her own emergency, so she hates to inform me this way, but told me to go check my MyChart as soon as possible. I felt like I was going to faint, I was instantly sweating, felt my vision tunneling, as I was frantically trying to log in to MyChart.
Back track a couple months. I am really not even sure when my symptoms started, maybe 6 months? But I started experiencing head/facial pain/numbness on just my left side of my face. If you could draw with a marker exactly down the middle of my face it would be just the left side. It would hurt to brush my hair on that side, my ear, just that side of my nose, everything just on the left side. It would last anywhere from 1-3 days. I just figured I had something weird like pinched nerves. I saw the chiropractor regularly, so I wasn’t too concerned. Then after having Brooklyn this kept happening,but more frequent, and now with more symptoms. I was having more headaches. I had black spots flashing in both eyes on the outside, twice I had fuzzy half moon shapes in my left eye for about 20 minutes. Nausea. Some pins and needles feeling in the fingers. I felt like my balance was off, I kept hitting my shoulder on doors, like I was miss judging the turn into the room. I also would occasionally lose my balance when leaning down to pick something up off the floor. I was a little more concerned as these new symptoms came on, but was convinced they all could be from being postpartum. It could be hormones, exhaustion, dehydration,etc. The next time I was at the Chiropractor, I decided to tell her some of the symptoms and she suggested I go get checked out. As did Matt and family, but I still didn’t make an appointment because honestly who has time to take care of themself when you have 4 little running around right? ( I know.....dumb because I can’t take care of them if I don’t take care of myself, but that was my argument) It wasn’t until a friend called me and asked if I made an appointment yet and I said no. She said I am hanging up and calling you back in 5 minutes and your telling me when your appointment day and time is. I am forever grateful for her pressuring me to make my appointment.
Last week I met with my Primary Doctor and she was leaning towards the diagnosis of Atypical Migraines, but wanted to do and MRI of my neck and head because the thing about neurological symptoms is they can be the same for a lot of different things and she wanted to rule out big bad word “Brain Tumor.” To be honest, I wanted to rule that out too!
My MRI was schedule for March 30th a Saturday morning. It was pretty uneventful, I had one when I herniated a disc in my lower back before, so I knew what to expect. My doctor said since the appointment was on Saturday, no immediate news is probably good news and I would hear from her early in the week.
Now circling back to when I logged into MyChart. She had typed a long message but all I could concentrate on was the words “sorry this is not good news” and “ you need to see a neurosurgeon as soon as possible!” Not only was I getting this terrifying news, my doctor had said in her voicemail she was out the rest of the day for her own emergency so I couldn’t reach her, I was stuck at work for many more hours, and I had just left my newborn for the first time for this long! I was an emotional wreck and the rest of my day was a blur and I can’t say I really retained anything. The GOOD news is what they found appears to be a Retrocerebellar Arachniid Cyst ( these are not cancerous tumors) it apprears to be in the back of my head, pressing on surrounding structures (more so on the left) and probably causing some or all of my symptoms.
Yesterday was filled with many phone calls trying to get a better understanding and getting on the schedule to see a neurosurgeon. I have an appointment next Wednesday with one neurosurgeon and have another doctor reviewing my MRI, so I can get on his schedule as well just in case I want/need a second option.
I have an amazing family and already feel so loved and supported and know as tough as I sometimes try to be on the outside, really appreciate all their generous offers and love/support!
The thing I am most anxious about is the unknown, and I know worrying doesn’t get you anywhere, but it is hard not to do. Much easier said than done! What if I need Brain surgery??? That opens a whole new can of what ifs and worries!! Or can they keep it in there, keep an eye on it, and just try to manage symptoms???
Anyways, In the mean time your love and prayers are appreciated! I will update after I learn more at my appointment next week!