Celebrating An AVM/Stroke

I have a question for all of you. Am I the only one that celebrates the day of their stroke-avm discovery or surgery? I will reach a significant milestone on Tuesday July 28th, in that it will be 5 years since my brain surgery-brain bleed-aneurysm-stroke & near death experience. My family looks at me a little bit wacky, but to me its like a day to celebrate what was a rebirth of sorts. Having all this changes your life, some not so good changes, but in other ways you have new friends and experiences that you treasure. Granted, I’m not crazy, and wish life would be all perfect and none of this would have happened. But the fact is it did, And to me it’s a time, especially at year 5, to really celebrate my survival. Do any of you do the same thing?

James. I can understand your wanting to celebrate the day of your second chance at life. You could call it your “re-birthday”! lol

congratulations on your milestone. i will be celabrating the year anniversary of the descovery of my avm(never blead) the day after you. i think iced cream is in order, maybe a cake once i hit one year post op (and avm free.) Have a happy life changing day.

i dont think that is wierd at all…i know i celebrated the first year after my surgery…and just how far i had come in that year considering doctors had said i would never walk again i defied all odds and proved them wrong i had plenty to celebrate and i will continue to celebrate every year to come…good on you and congratulations on your 5th annvirssary…party hard and enjoy xxx

I think its wonde3rful to celebrat this day!! I did the same one year past gamma radiation,so happy you are doing well!!

It’s not strange at all my sister has made my son a batch of cupcakes for his first and second anniversary.

James, first- congrats on the 5 year mark. That is wonderful news! And totally worth celebrating. Let your family think you are a weirdo (being normal is so over rated anyways) and celebrate the day away!!!
I am almost at my two year anniversary of starting my treatments with Dr. Yakes. And I’m thrilled with the progress so far. While I am not at all AVM free yet, I’m STILL planning on celebrating the 2 year mark! So if anyway is a crazy person, it’s me. Or maybe I just like excuses to indulge in goodies :slight_smile:

Hey… What a coincidence, MY surgery was on July 28th!! Of course, mine was 2005, so I am coming up on my 4th anniversary. To answer your question, heck yeah I celebrate the anniversary of my surgery. It’s possible that some people consider it an odd thing to celebrate, but many of the people with which I am close celebrate right along with me. Last year a few of my co-workers threw a small party at work to mark the occasion. Just today I was at my parents’ place with my wife and son and my mom just came out of nowhere and said, “You’re anniversary is just a few days away!”

While I remember many milestones, July 28th, the day of my surgery, is the only one that I “celebrate” at all.

Some other dates that I do not celebrate, but most certainly remember:

October 30, 2001 - The day that I went to have an eye exam to try to figure out why I was having headaches and a hard time focusing on my computer at work and was sent by the optometrist to have an MRI after finding that my peripheral vision was “not right”. Had my first MRI that afternoon. Got a call from the radiologist that evening to have me come back for another MRI the next day.
October 31, 2001 (Yep, Halloween!) - Had the 2nd MRI and was first diagnosed my AVM. The next week, I was lying on a table having an angiogram.
January 2005 - Woke up late at night with a numb arm, uncontrollable shaking and confusion. Went to the ER, was admitted to the NICU, had another angiogram and spent a week in the hospital, not knowing whether I was going to have surgery or not.
June 13, 2005 (at least I think it was the 13th) - Date of my 3rd angiogram, which was performed to run a Wada test prior to my surgery.
June 20, 2005 - Married my wonderful wife.
July 28, 2005 - Had my craniotomy, spent the better part of a week in the hospital, spent the following 9 months recovering.
December 25, 2005 (Yep, Christmas!) - First (and hopefully only) Grand Mal seizure after being weened off of Dilantin following surgery.

Such a funny post. I thought I was the only one. For my 1st year anniversary of my bleed, I actually drove 4 hours to the scene of the crime.

It’s a life-changing day, so I guess it makes complete sense.

Just wanted to let you all know that I had a great celebration today. I did a special “AVM” edition of my radio show “The Morning Coffee Mix”, and played songs that related to stories I shared about my experience 5 years ago. So it was cool to educate folks also about what happens to folks that both have AVM’s, TBI’s, and strokes. Afterwards I went to Chili’s with some of my dearest friends, and had a molten lava for desert. That’s the desert with hot chocolate cake covered in a scoop of ice cream that covered in a hard shell. Kinda a nice symbolic desert don’t you think, lol! It was cool to see I’m not alone:::)) Thanks for all your comments and congrats to me on the five years!! Here’s to the next 5 for all of us!

Well i don’t celebrate the day i found out or the days of my surgeries. But my family thinks i’m weird because i have pictures on my phone from MRI’s that show my avm. But hey its a way to deal with this i think. And when some one questions what i have its nice to have a visual lol.

My daughter, Lizzie, celebrates the day of her hemorrhage too. December 19th - it’s her rebirthday, because she died and came back on the operating table. It is also, unfortunately, the first day of her life as a disabled person, but as time goes on her life continues to improve. Her incredible spirit did not die on that day, thank God.

hi James!

i say… YES! definitely! celebrate away! i celebrate the day of my hemorrhage, or bleed, or stroke; whatever you want to call it. December 19, 2006 is a day that will be forever etched in my brain. i of course celebrate my birthday (December 25), but i also celebrate December 19th. it’s my “re-birthday”. I died and came back. the fact that i didn’t leave forever is cause for a celebration… don’t ya think? celebrate the fact that you are still here and that the big man upstairs gave you a second chance at life… and hey! more presents for you! ha…

Hey James,
I thought about to do the SAME thing! Isn’t that strange?
Well I am pretty new with AVM stuff, but I want do the same for myself. I want to do for my stroke day and GK (surgery day is coming up very soon) I think we are all positively see what happened with us, that’s why we want to celebrate! We NEVER want to go back then, but we are all proud of what we had to go through! Right…?

Hello, I’m new to this site, and I love that yours was one of the first posts I read! I had an aneurysm and AVM 2-for-1 bleed. My five year ‘alive’ celebration is this nov. I love to celebrate the beginning of my second life. I even get myself a present (first year, lovely diamond earings, simple but timeless). I had an AVM/anneuryms and was touch and go for 3 wks, and it was an incredibly crazy-hard first 2 yrs of gruelling times at first. You’re not crazy, they are. My experience was horrific, but I like to think of how far I’ve come, and that every day since is a gift. I consider it my second birthday too, since I had to create a ‘new me’ afterwords. Thanks for the post, my family never ‘gets’ how much I celebrate my recovery, fearing it’s living backwards. I think denial is worse and embracing the horror of it all by celebrating the achievement is healthy and healing. I actually cebrate the day I worke up from the coma as my 2nd b-day, b/c the docs didn’t think I’d be waking up. Makes it special to me!

Hi, you are most def NOT alone. I reminded my husband that it was 4 years ago on july21,2005 that he almost lost me. He had a very negative reaction to my reminding him, said I don’t like to think about that day.It puts me in a bad mood. I told him I can’t help thinking about it because I am constantly reminded by the after effects. ( left side affected)~oh well

I celebrate the day my AVM bled, I was given a 1% chance of living. Also I celebrate my birthday. I was born on August 26, my other birthday is November 9

October 8th of this year was the 1 year anniversary of my surgery!!! I woke up and jumped outta bed and called everyone to tell them… i was excited about my battle… I think we all should be. living with AVM isnt easy.

James- I plan on shouting my 1 year anniversary to the world! I tell everyone that i just needed to get "rebooted" I was given a second chance at life-I go to anything even remotely resembling a celebration! Every day I wake up is a bonus for me! I had embolization for AVM and suffered a stroke- but 4 months after it happened I was back at work!