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Howard Wallen hasn't added a story.
Written diligently on my phone over many hours as we are presently without a working computer in our home...
While it seemed that nothing but fake news was all that one could find wherever one looked, my world just got very real with some information regarding my health.
Briefly, here is the gist of it all...
Recently I've been struggling with issues of balance and hearing and was referred to a neurologist and subsequently to have an MRI of my head.
These scans revealed a growth on my right side, and I was diagnosed with a vestibular schwannoma.
So, what is that anyway?
I know, it sounds like a sandwich, but in fact is a slow growing tumor originating off of my auditory nerve.
Sometimes called an auditory neuroma, these growths are considered pretty rare overall.
The good news is that it is self-contained and benign.
The growth is not actually in my brain, but rather beginning to press on various nerves which are associated with my ability to walk, balance and function particularly affecting my right side.
Apparently this thing has been growing for 20-30 years and first began to reach a size to where its presence affected the aforementioned nerves a few short months ago and has me to the point of my not getting around that well.
Given the size of the tumor and the ways it is impacting my life, the best option is a surgery to remove the growth.
Eventually, if not removed or somehow reduced in size, the tumor will continue its slow but steady growth and my functionality will decrease and at some point my brain will run out of room to accommodate this impeding guest.
This could be another 20-30 years but I am already experiencing significant loss of my abilities and quality of life.
I am a total proponent of our own innate abilities to reduce and/or reverse growths and such in our bodies and surgery has been something that I've shied away from even until recently.
Hell, I've spent most of the last 20+ years working tirelessly to hold this perspective for clients who have lost sight of these very truths.
That said, I still come from the same place but am humbly, after much inner dialogue, choosing to go ahead with the surgery.
Honestly I reached this decision after realizing that I lacked a certain strength and really needed help.
The surgery is scheduled for the morning of the 12th and will take about 5 hours.
This is unfamiliar ground for me, as it surely is for most.
I am pretty scared and well out of my comfort zone!
Following the surgery, my stay in the hospital should only be 3-5 days with a possible indeterminate time at an in-patient rehab facility thereafter.
The length of time at the rehab will depend on how well and quickly I can recalibrate and recover my abilities to balance and walk, etc...
As far as recovery and returning to work, I'm being told a month depending on how I respond.
The other day I had the occasion to speak with a local woman who underwent basically the same procedure a few years ago and she related it taking almost 3 months before she was feeling ready to get back to her job.
Everyone is different and each case unique, I get that. What I mean to say is that there are many unknowns...
Hence my creating this campaign to ask for your financial assistance.
I have not worked in at least a month, and it's been 2 or more since I've done anything full time.
Fortunately I do have insurance, albeit limited coverage, through my wife's employer, but the bills are already beginning to wrack up.
With doctor visits, running here and there, plus 2 MRIs the costs are already well beyond our means with the surgery, hospital stay and potential rehab yet to come.
I'm not going to endlessly post asking for your assistance.
If you can or want to donate towards this, cool.
And if you can't or don't want to, also cool.
Share or don't share as you see fit, both are good.
I'm not going to make any promises here that could come around to weigh upon me should I be unable to fulfill them.
Please don't be put off by the goal, as this amount was only set to not limit our cause here.
Of course anything offered is a great gesture of kindness and totally appreciated!
Lastly, I really hope to impart that what is most relevant and welcomed is your words and love during this time.
Yes the money piece is important, and something that really takes a lot of my energy as I worry about that side of things but what I truly seek right now is connection with those I love.
If you are reading this then in some way you fall into that category.
I'm not very communicative especially on social media, and definitely even less so as of late.
I wasn't in the right awareness until now to fully disclose all that I've been dealing with.
Part of my way of addressing things is to reach further into my own depths for understanding.
Sometimes this can be interpreted as polarizing or dismissive but I assure you this has not been my intention.
I'm simply trying to be okay, like we all are.
I guess I'm a stoically private guy when it comes to my personal life, but for those who do have interest I wanted to share some of what's been going down with me.
Peace and Thank You, Howard
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