Hydrocephalus: “Mind over Matter”

Hydrocephalus: “Mind over Matter”

There’s a little well-known phrase I’ve come to adopt of late, “Mind over matter“.

My late grandfather used this quite a bit when he was still alive. He died from lung cancer about 8 months after diagnosis. The day he died, I was at his bedside but didn’t realise what was happening at the time, I was 12. I literally heard him taking his last breath from behind the curtain…a sound I still remember after 27 years.

I posted some time ago about (different stages of Hydro), this post together with those three words are what brought me to today’s post.

I know that majority of what I write to highlight the negativity (reality) of the condition. I also know that I am justified in the feelings expressed in them because it’s what I’ve experienced at that particular point in time. However, today I want to say to you that even though I suspected ETV failure at the time, I’m doing much better now. (Just to clarify, I don’t think I had nothing to worry about and remain mindful).

I also want to say that I have definitely been feeling good as far as my Hydrocephalus goes. This realisation came when my 6-year old daughter turned to me one night and said, “Mum, do you feel good?” I found the question a bit odd but realised a few seconds later, she was actually referring to my health as I’m always saying “I’m not feeling good“. She smiled at me and looked pleased or even happy with my response. I smiled back at her as she closed her eyes and fell asleep.

I loved that! I love the fact that she spared a thought to me and I loved that it seemed to make her happy in return. However, it’s also made me think…As young as she is, she worries about me. This is not necessarily a bad thing, however, I don’t want her to have to worry about me…not just yet.

The beauty of it all though, I know that despite me always saying that no one in my house cares about me…it’s not true. It means that they don’t have to be older to understand, it means I have a caring daughter and most of all, it means that I really do feel good…

I feel that I need to give praise for not having had any hydro symptoms in a very long time. To say that I feel confident my ETV (Endoscopic Third Ventriculostomy) is keeping my CSF (Cerebrospinal Fluid) flowing and that I have been “treated“. I know as well as anyone with this condition, that there is no cure.  But, applying the mind over matter principle, I feel that I actually have been…(treated that is).

It’s been proven in many studies that changing your attitude or perception of something, can actually turn negativity into positivity. I am a realist by nature and know that this doesn’t work with everything but I leave room to open myself up to the possibilities.

Maybe my grandfather died so quickly after diagnosis because at some stage, he accepted what was to come. Maybe he was fully at peace and trusted…maybe I have come to a point where it simply doesn’t matter anymore. Maybe in my mind, this condition is just an extension of me but it doesn’t define me. Maybe if I want to believe (I can allow myself that much) that from this point forward, I will be just fine…then that’s OK!

Many of us have challenges in life, irrespective of what they may be, which break us down. But, we don’t have to allow it to take over our entire being. All things shall pass…and this will too…(literally or figuratively).

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