What They Don’t Tell You Before Brain Surgery


A craniotomy is obviously a hard thing to go through. It’s even harder to recover from once you get over the initial shock that follows. You start to think about life before, if you can even think right at all. You could use the bathroom by yourself. You could shower by yourself. You could understand the simplest things.

You were tired, but never this tired.

Your body can’t seem to regenerate fast enough and when you think you have the smallest power surge you wake up four hours later confused on when you even closed your eyes in the first place. The medicine keeps you sick. Your appetite is nonexistent and you can’t help but wonder when this will all end.

When will you stop throwing up? When will things began to feel okay?

It feels like there is no in end sight. You’re stuck watching the people you care about look at you with smiles that don’t quite reach their eyes. You began to feel worse, and that’s when you realize this is just week one.

Week two isn’t much better. You’re moved onto rehab if your body is slowly getting better. They’re pricking your finger and stealing all the blood from your body every morning at six. Your veins are turning purple and you just want to cry all the time. Your emotions are broken and you can’t watch even the happiest cartoon without feeling like your world is exploding right before your eyes.

It’s the kind of sadness that sinks into your bones and straight to your soul.

It makes you ache. You start to wonder when you’ll be able to walk by yourself. When you won’t be a fall risk anymore. When can you go home and see your dog. When will your veins stop showing through your now translucent skin. When will you be normal again?

One month later you still can’t get your emotions on check, and the best news you’ve heard is that you can drink in moderation. You start to want liquor to erase your thoughts, but after half a wine cooler you’re filling tipsy and this is not how you wanted the night to last. Your emotions are still running with a mind of their own, and you sit in your bed all day playing a video game you weren’t able to play just weeks before. The light doesn’t bother you eyes and you began to have hope. The kind that reaches into the darkest parts of you and pulls you out of despair.

A craniotomy is a very hard thing to process. It’s a very hard thing to recover from. As I go a little past one month post operation I still find myself in a little ocean of self pity and wanting to just be normal. It’s not that easy though when looking at the scar every time you go to the bathroom. It’s nerve wrecking to know people can see it because your hair isn’t growing back fast enough.

It’s a lot to take in on your own.

It’s a lot of stuff and the doctors don’t even began to tell you the half of it. Sure they tell you about the surgery, but they don’t know about week one, two, or four months down the line how you’ll be doing emotionally. It’s a craniotomy though.

It’s just a lot more to take in and no article you Google will ever be able to fully prepare you for this.