Wednesday, May 6, 2015

My Testimony - Part 3

To read from the beginning -- Part 1 is here, and Part 2 is here.

Today also happens to be World MoyaMoya Day - I am happy to be able to shed some light on this rare disease on behalf of my family and my cousin's daughter as well.

In January of 2013, I had a health scare. I had a TIA (mini stroke), I was slurring my words and unable to answer John’s questions, so I spent about 5 days in the hospital having all sorts of tests. I was released from the hospital and followed up with a neurologist in Memphis, but the doctors couldn’t tell me much other than I had evidence of several mini strokes and small veins in my brain. They told me then that as long as my blood pressure stayed in control, everything should be fine. As you can expect, Memphis doesn’t have the world class medical providers that we were used to, but God protected me. 

In October of 2013, we moved back to Houston… and during that move, I had another TIA. In my Dad’s driveway – I was totally disoriented and slurring my words. I took some aspirin and continued on with the move. I didn’t take it seriously; like I should have, but thankfully God was in control. After the first of the year, I started a wellness group and we challenged each other to drink nothing but water. Initially, I thought I was detoxing from caffeine… but it kept on going and I had a migraine every single day of January 2014. I went in to see my doctor, and then a neurologist. 

The neurologist diagnosed me with MoyaMoya Disease in March, and the only treatment (there is no cure) is brain surgery. Thankfully we were back in Houston, and the Chief of Neurosurgery at Houston Methodist has lots of experience with MoyaMoya. It’s basically that my blood vessels are too small and it causes pressure to build up in my brain – so they needed to bypass those vessels in order for newer larger vessels to grow. I needed a bypass on both sides. 

in the ICU after surgery

 day after surgery

So I had my first brain surgery on May 1, 2014. I recovered for 8 weeks from that one, and then had the second on July 8, 2014. I’ve been extremely lucky, because this is usually diagnosed in children. My cousin’s daughter is 12 and had surgery for the same thing a year and a half before I did. God kept me from having a major stroke, and I’m forever grateful for my relationship with Him because I’m not sure how I could have gotten through all that we have without Him. 

second surgery scar

shaving my head

We still struggle with getting over all of the issues that came along with being out of sorts for basically the entirety of last summer. Tyler still has issues with being left without one of us, as a lot of you have seen with his fear of being in Sunday School without John. He still thinks every time someone comes to see them that I’m going to leave and go to the hospital. I know that in time things will settle down, and we’ll find out this summer how things are going when I go back for a day surgery procedure where they will test my blood vessel growth. 

God has been with me for my whole life, and even though it took me a while to come around to Him… I know that he knew what he was doing. He got me through all that we’ve walked through up to now, and I know that he will be there with us for all that will come in the future as well. I pray that my story has blessed ya’ll in some way.

If you'd like to read more about my MoyaMoya Journey, click this link to all of my stories regarding my experience. 

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