A little over a month ago, we received word from my neurosurgeon, Dr. Gonzalez, that my MRI results from this past fall showed that my aneurysm has not grown.  Last Thursday, we had an in-person follow-up to that call.

At this point, we get the chance to see Dr. Gonzalez about once a year, generally for this update to discuss the MRI results.  It's hard to put into words how this experience feels.  To be in the presence of another person who literally, by the grace of God, saved your life, is kind of a lot of take in.  He is so humble and loving, absolutely the most willing and gracious tool to be used in the hand of God to effectuate such miraculous works in people's lives.  At the same token, aside from the warm and wonderful reminders that I am here and I have surpassed all medical prognoses of my situation, this type of meeting still manages to be a little bewildering.  It's still crazy to think this all happened to me, to think that I am meeting with my neuro-surgeon about the after-effects of a nearly fatal  stroke.  Life is so strange sometimes.

(It was 8am ok -- yes, I was still half asleep)

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Nonetheless, the wonderful takeaway from this visit was that despite having this aneurysm, since it has not showed any growth over a few years now, most likely it will not grow in the future and the chances of it rupturing are extremely, extremely small.  He said my life should not really be inhibited by this in ANY WAY (except, of course, no boxing or bungee jumping -- darn!)  Even better, the opportunity to have another baby some day is a viable and a safe option for me.  Wow!  That one in particular really made my heart sing.  I truly do have a deep desire to have another child again someday, if that's what God has for me, so this was such wonderful news!

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Of course the positive appointment prompted a celebratory detour to an old favorite in Westwood, just down the street from UCLA.  Profeta is such a lovely little spot, just perfect for sitting in the morning sun, cheers-ing with the black gold, and smiling sweetly at each other in light of so many good gifts.  I am so thankful.

***An especially wonderful side note --  Dr. Gonzalez informed me that he and several other neurosurgeons and even UCLA's CEO, Dr. Feinberg, have gotten tables at the Casa Colina Tribute to Courage gala.  I assumed UCLA must always attend this gala, but he said since Jay and I are part of the UCLA family, they really wanted to be there to support us in this special way this year.  This event will be humbling and unique, even more so knowing we will be surrounded by people who played parts in me even being here.  As I mentioned, Gabby Gifford's husband, Commander Mark Kelly, will be speaking.   You can still get tickets (until Monday).  Casa Colina just released this blurb juxtaposing our stories...

 

Commander Mark Kelly was set to take the Endeavour on its final mission to the

International Space Station and Jay Wolf was working through his third year of

law school when the inconceivable happened. Their wives, Gabrielle Giffords, a

Congress member meeting her constituents in Tucson, and Katherine Wolf, making

lunch at home in Malibu, suffered different but equally unexpected devastating

injuries that left them with massive brain damage.

Brain injury is a challenge that doesn’t end in a month or a year, even when

the injured person has returned home.  But when a whole family pulls together, a

way can be found that makes rebuilding a life together have meaning, joy and

dignity.  We want to enlist your enthusiastic support of our fundraising gala,

Tribute to Courage on Saturday, February 25, 2012.  The evening will celebrate

the power of the human spirit as we hear how these courageous women struggled to

reclaim their lives with the help and support of their husbands, families,

friends and strong rehabilitation teams.

We hope you will choose to join us by sponsoring this event and that you will

take an active role in making this event known in the community.  This will be a

landmark evening for Casa Colina.  Thank you for your support of the highest

quality of life for all survivors of brain injury and their families. If there

is additional information you need about the Tribute to Courage or Casa Colina,

please contact me or Krista Struve at 909-596-7733 ext. 2223 or

kstruve@csacolina.org.