Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Thomas's Story, Part 2 of 3

So, as far as brain tumors go, it was a big bad one. Technically speaking, an ependymoma. We saw it highlighted in green on the MRI readout, growing out of the fourth ventricle with big ram’s horns and looking like something that might appear in gigantic replica over a heavy metal concert stage.

Our neurosurgeon - twelve hours in and we already had our very own neurosurgeon -- walked us through the tumor itself and the possible outcomes of surgery. Our social worker -- we got one of those, too -- cried along with us at that point.

The day of the surgery, all of our family and very close friends came up to the hospital. I'd never really understood hospital visits or vigils before; showing up when there isn't anything useful to do just isn't my style. Now I understand. Our loved ones came to stand by us, like a congregation that stands when scripture is read. There comes a point where there is nothing to do but put your body in the way of what's coming.


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