Friday, September 3, 2010

Laying Low

The dog days. Ah, summer, an unusually eventful time of year for me of late. Let’s recap.

Twenty-four months ago, doctors found and coiled my unruptured basilar tip cerebral aneurysm, saving my life. I spent July and August recuperating and reflecting on my personal miracle. Dr. Wayne Olan, I have no words.

Twelve months ago, I took my first solo vacation in more than a dozen years. During an intensive, week-long course in Soho, NYC, I learned to draw -- see differently, really. (I also practiced yoga at the Jivamukti Yoga Center alongside Russell Simmons(!).)

This summer, I invested in myself with a minor cosmetic surgical procedure that resulted in an unexpected complication called Keratitis. The condition causes the clear covering over the cornea to become inflamed. Have you dealt with it? It was a bewildering and disheartening ordeal. I looked awful and felt worse.

I’d never heard of it, nor could I find information online that would reassure me about treatment and recovery. I read that I could lose my vision. I also read the condition of that blurred my vision might remain.

I found it difficult to maintain my usually upbeat disposition. I downloaded the audio version of Pema Chodron’s book, When Things Fall Apart, Heart Advice for Difficult Times, and listened to it over and over. Pema, I am grateful for your words of wisdom.

Dr. Erica Edell, my ophthalmologist, reached out to every colleague, finally locating a specialist who eased me off of steroids and antibiotics and suggested a non-medical course of treatment that saved my vision and my life. Dr. E, I am eternally grateful.

As the fog lifts, I look back over a quiet period when I disappeared from my life, online and off. I’m so happy to be back.

Dites moi, SVP, how was your summer?


  1. Wow, that is an amazing odyssey. Thank God you and your doctors found this aneurism before it took a turn for the worse! I can only imagine how an experience like this affects your outlook and thinking. So glad the world is still blessed by your presence.

  2. what an intense summer for you indeed. glad things are on the up & up for you! definitely missed you while you were away. glad to have you back! hugs!!