Hello, my name is olivia and i live in berlin, germany. i am 36 years old, i have a 3 year old son and since 2 weeks i know that i have a 1cm aneurysm.
the neurosurgeon told me that i have to clip it in a open brain surgery and i am very very scared. the last 2 weeks have been very hard, since i on one hand am so glad they found it and on the other hand i am so sad and scared. i started this year with so much energy, finally started to feel like myself again after the birth of my son, going back to acting classes and trying to focus on a career and be free again (my boy just started going to daycare and it’s the first time in almost 4 years i feel like i can do something again).
what is hardest for me right now is that first of all i suddenly seem to feel and be so sure that i’ll die. and that scares me so much. i dont know if i know something deep inside or if this is just a psychological way to deal with the possibility of death to prepare me to the seriousness of this illness. i just deep inside feel like im saying good bye to everyone…
the truth is that i was never sick, never had something serious and noone in my familly every really did. i am healthy and young and strong or so i though. i have trouble dealing with life after birth already, my body changed so much and i feel like i lost so much of what i identified myself with by getting pregnant (and that was a wonderful and beautiful ecperience, so how will i be able to cope with the changes after something like this?).
i am scared that it will change me so much. and i am so worried that i’ll lose the rest of my “best years”, you know what i mean?
i also dont know how to handle recovery with a 3 year old and we dont have any family here in berlin. i am swiss and canadian, my husband is israeli. they are all far away. and i react very sensitive to medicine, who knows how i’ll react on brain surgery?
my aneurysm is pressing against my left optical nerve… anyone has experience about this spot? how big are the chances on big neurological deficits and long term problems? like epilepsy or will it affect my speach or language? will i still have a good short term memory? and i know this sounds very superficial but how does the scar heal and will my skull still look the same? the problem is that i am an actress and he wants to cut a piece of my forehead out. but with cutting the muslces and nerves there, my mimic will change no? and im worried about my ability to think and talk fast, learning text by heart and also i worry about confusing languages. can this happen? i do speak 3 languages daily but not everyone in my environment understands all of them so will i speak the wrong language to my husband, etc.?
i am sorry for writing so much, even more so to write another post with actual serious questions. to be honest i feel just so alone with all of this. all i get to hear is that i have to be positive and it will all be fine but thats not how i feel. and since giving birth i also dont feel as strong as i used to, frankly i’m constantly exhausted and my immune system isnt great anymore either…
i reacted with quite some physical trauma after giving birth and it took me so very long to halfway feel like myself again. and i react very strong on medicine (i never took anything else than ibuprofen, paracetamol, advil and maybe 2 or 3 times something else and 5x antibiotics…). will this shake me up like crazy?
last but not least i suffer from strong panic attacks (i am seeing a psychoanalist since some years now) and i am VERY scared of vomitting. and i hear over and over that you vomit after the surgery and that REALLY scares me and i know i should be more scared of other things, rationally i do but emotionally i am REALLY scared of that. and of being intubated and dying.
oh and i dont know at all how to deal with all of this. do i have to write a will? a letter to my family and my little boy? sometimes i think i should make a video for him so he’ll see me how i was before, in case i do have some damage after the operation but to be honest i cant even think about that, i cry so much just imagining this. 2 weeks i was very rational about it all, informing myself and trying to deal with it but since yesterday i just cry all the time. i am so sad and so scared. i dont want to die. i dont want to have neurological or physical damage. i wont be able to deal with that i think.
and do i have to run around germany and figure out which doctor is the best and talk not only to the neurosurgeon but also find someone that will do it endovascular? can this aneurysm be treated endovaskular and did the neurosurgeon say no because hes more specialised or is it really safer to clip an aneurysm?
im sorry. this is really alot and i am all over the place. sorry.
and thank you for reading and all the best for you all. olivia