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Acoustic Neuromas / A New Me -

When we hear a diagnosis that really scares us, we don’t always immediately realize that our life will never be the same. It is changed forever.

“You have a brain tumor,” the neurosurgeon said in a calm these things-happen-every-day voice. “The good news is it is benign, but you will need surgery to remove it.”

I am a nurse and had never heard of an acoustic neuroma. I soon learned it is a rare (1 in a 100,000 people) benign tumor on the eighth cranial nerve. This tumor can cause deafness on the affected side and/or balance issues. Balance and extreme dizziness had caused my family physician to refer me to the neurosurgeon. I had good hearing.  

Most diseases dictate one type of treatment. Not so with acoustics. First of all, if it’s small (under 2 cm) and not creating big problems, one solution can be to wait and watch with MRI’s. Maybe it will remain small and not require treatment.

No matter what size it is, some patients feel an urge to get it out of their head. I didn’t feel that way. Most surgeons want to operate. No surprise, right? They say this is the best treatment. Trouble is, there are three surgical approaches. Each of the approaches carry a risk of side effects. Another group of doctors feel radiation is appropriate for many patients. Here again patients are faced with decisions – what kind of radiation is best for me?

It’s tough and I quickly went crazy researching and trying to figure out what to do. Lots of research and opinions can be over-whelming. I want to share my journey with you in the hope it helps you in your journey. That’s what this blog is all about.

I quickly realized even though it was benign, my life was forever changed. The old me was gone, as it is with other serious diseases. It took time but I learned a new me is different, but can be good. I started to pray very specific prayers. I also made a list of Bible verses that I found helpful. As time went on, I realized I could combine my prayers and verses. They formed steps toward my recovery. Since then I have discovered many of the same steps can be applied to other diseases that are life altering.

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A special message to my
readers who question God and his ways—Can you think for just a second of the
Bible as a solid piece of chocolate? I have used a few chips of that chocolate
on the pages in this blog. They are some of my favorites that are still helping
me on my AN journey, as well as in other life situations. There are many more
delicious morsels waiting for you to discover.

 Do you own a Bible? If not,
Do yourself a favor and go buy one. It can be overwhelming to see the
selection. First of all, you want one that you can read and understand. All the
scriptures verses in this writing are from the New Living Bible
translation.