After returning home from surgery to remove my AN and when my eyes adjusted to reading I would page through these stories. I have to admit I was discouraged from reading AN stories and was told they were negative people complaining. But, the more stories that were similar to mine helped me to become more patient with myself. It helps knowing there wasn't a new and different development or perhaps if there was, the stories offered direction. The ANA is a great place for info and to know you are not alone. Some may say "it's all negative." I disagree and encourage people to use the info here as tools to help.
Before setting sail with our children to circumnavigate the world on a sailboat in 1984, we read many books and articles both negative and positive. It was the horror stories, the disasters at sea, the negative comments about difficulty of life onboard that we found most beneficial. How else would we have known to buy that particular piece of equipment for the "just in case" senario or having on hand the proper medicine or tools needed to keep us safe and healthy? See the negativity in a new light and you will see the benefit of reading peoples accounts of what they experience. One can relax, knowing it is not a new development or that something is wrong. When they say healing takes time it surely does. I heard this alot and wondered, "yeah, but how much time?". Reading accounts from the 2, 5, 10-year AT people who can at times, continue to experience problems of balance, hearing challenge, headaches, etc. helps the "newbie" to have more patience with themselves.
My husband and I had a great desire to one day get back on board our sailboat and cross more oceans. This is not my desire anymore as my eyes won't hold still while moving around and the thought of living on a tilt lurching up and down trying to move around safely on the boat doesn't appeal to me. I no longer have the energy and strength you need to cross oceans and move about at night on a pitching deck during a gale. This is another chapter in our lives and soon will come to resolve as I hear him talking about sailing her to the Bahamas to swing on her anchor while he flys over and now and then taking his job with him. I feel this is a great solution for him. Being at anchor appeals to me and will look forward to many visits to "the old homestead" so long as we don't cross oceans. Between us we have relied on one another greatly to get us through many possible disasters, storms, bumps in the road and most recently BT/AT (short for before tumor/after tumor) and continue moving forward as best we know how.
Knowledge is power.