Wednesday morning the 17th we head to the hospital bright an early. We met the whole Neuro Team. They Go Big over at Barrows! Everyone was very efficient but friendly and calming. While we were waiting in our little pre-op room my brother Matt showed up. He made things less stressful and fun. Pretty soon it was time and Tom was wheeled away.
We went to the O.R. waiting room where they gave us a pager to keep us informed every hour along with an amazing nurse named Janice. Her job was to go in and out of all the O.R.'s and get info for the family. She sure made our life fun in the waiting room. She was a ray of sunshine in that dreary room.
We had a whole corner of comfy chairs that were filled with friends and family while we waited for Tom. **I will NEVER again send Tom alone to the hospital while I have surgery like I have in the past. I feel so bad that I didn't think to have someone with him.** I could NOT have made it through the day without all the distractions I had going on. We played games, made everyone a bitmoji, told stories, read magazines, ate and ate and ate (stress eating of course), colored in those new cool coloring books, looked at Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, who knows what we did but we had fun doing it!
About two hours after they started surgery the nurse came in and said the surgeon wanted to meat with us. What? This was supposed to be a 4-6 hour surgery or more! We went into a room and waited. The surgeon came in and said that they tried to bring Tom out of the anesthesia so they could do the functional part of the surgery and they couldn't control him so they had to put him back under and try again tomorrow. They had cut his scalp and cut his scull but hadn't touched his brain so it would be safe to try it again. Tom had woken up and not know where he was and tried to get up and ripped the Wilson halo out of his head. When they doctor told us both girls and I said, "ahhhhhhhh" because you DO NOT WAKE TOM UP FROM A DEAD SLEEP! He will fight you, HaHa. Although in this case it wasn't very Haha!
We waited to go see him in recovery and boy was he funny! Good thing he was so funny since we had to do it all over again the next day. Made it easier not to be mad at him (wink)
Fast forward to the next day. His surgery was scheduled for around four but they got him in early and was wheeled out about 1pm. The party continued in the O.R. waiting room with Janice, all our friends and family and our comfy corner. This time we didn't get to see him until 10pm. Now that is a long day! Round two was a success. They tried to wake him but he had another reaction so they put him back under and finished the surgery. Our doctor and his team were amazing. They explained everything so we could understand, they were nice and kind and patient with all of our questions and the best part was they performed a successful surgery and removed the tumor from Tom's brain!
We initially thought the tumor was the size of a ping pong ball. But after they got in there they found that what we were seeing was the nucleus of the tumor and it ended up being the size of a softball if not a grapefruit! (Dr. Sanai's words) We just can't believe Tom didn't have any other symptoms than that one seizure! They said the tumor was slow growing and had probably been growing for....years!
Now looking back there were a few small signs but we just thought it was because of getting older. Tom had been having a hard time hearing in a large group or with noise in the room , his eyesight was getting blurry, and he was having some memory issues -things like names, dates, times and small things. I thought he just wasn't listening to me when I told him things. In fact, four months prior I had him stop drinking his favorite diet coke because I read that it caused memory loss! Nope, it was the tumor! The doctor said that this tumor was caused by a gene mutation and was NOT hereditary, something Tom ate or was exposed to or anything he did. His brain just decided to grow this tumor. I joke that Tom is so smart his brain had to grow a new storage facility to house all the information he keeps putting in there. This is a joke. Tom didn't understand the joke. I guess you can't joke with people who just had brain surgery. They take everything very literal. Oooopps! Wife fail.
I am so very thankful for an amazing support group that has literally carried our little family through this shocking and scary ordeal. I could not have done it without our family and friends and church family near and far. We have received calls, texts, emails, notes, cards, food, treats, our house and animals have been taken care of, all of our needs have been met. Toilet paper, shampoo, random things we needed just showed up! I know this a little thing but those darn bitmoji's saved my sanity this week. I kid you not. When I would get one of those in a text it made everything better. I think humor is great medicine in stressful situations. And bitmoji's are very humorous!