It’s My Brainiversary

I know the news world is focusing on the 10th anniversary of 9/11 but they have forgotten it is also the 10th anniversary of my brain surgery at Mayo Clinic. Here is a gross picture of my head after surgery. Every time I see this I think why didn’t I have my surgery closer to Halloween – I would have had the best costume of all.

In case you don’t know the story, I had a MVD for my HFS — I love to say that, it sounds so techie. MVD = Multivascular Decompression and HFS = Hemifacial Spasms.

My HFS started about five years before my surgery with a small, but consistent tick in my left eye. I worked with my friend Amy at the time and for some reason she was having trouble with stuttering so we were going to start a new comedy duo Twitch & Stutter but it never happened.

The HFS kept progressing, as it is known to do, to the point where I couldn’t read because my eye twitched so and it would wake me up at night. The worse part though was I was so self-conscious of the twitching when I was around people that I started to just stay home as much as possible.

I finally went to a neurosurgeon who recommended the surgery and I decided to go ahead and 10 years later I’m still twitch free. But the thing that I really like is that my experience has helped a couple of other people. First there is Mike Wuest, someone I never met who read about my experience on the HFS website and went to Mayo and had the surgery done. But the best is my friend Lori, who I use to work with, who just had the procedure last Friday. She is home and healing now but I was able to refer her to my doctor and to the Mayo clinic and now she is going to also be spasm free.

I have a hard time with the concept that everything happens for a reason but if is nice to know that my problem/solution helped at least two other people.

So 10 years later I am thinking how lucky I am that the surgery went well (yes I’ve heard ALL the brain surgery jokes) and that the HFS has never reoccurred.


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