Last Saturday marked a special day for me. Three years ago, I was prepped for surgery, wheeled in the operating room and injected with anesthesia. I remember my last fuzzy thought being that that might be my last memory. They operated that day to remove a benign brain tumor in an operation I had a 10% chance of never waking up. It was two days after the 4th of July where we had gone to three different fireworks displays and eaten our weight in greasy, fried fair foods. My life was about to change, but not in the way I expected it.
We marked the day (I hate to say “celebrated” because it sounds weird to say, “WOOHOO, you had a brain tumor!”) with pizza and cake. It was kind of like a birthday party, except the tumor was thankfully not present. My husband asked me if I was going to make it a special event every year. I responded, “Maybe when it stops affecting my life, I’ll stop remembering it.”
That day forever changed me. If you would have asked me upon waking up if I thought I would be married with a crazy, bicultural baby in less than three years, I would have laughed…or cried. I can happily say that what looked like one of the worst days of my life became a blessing in disguise. It forced me to evaluate how I was living my life and how I prioritized things. It forced change in some relationships that needed to change. It was painful, yes, but it forced me to evolve beyond the stasis in my life. And things have turned out rather beautifully, I’d say.