Like it is, in RL

I’m breaking my vow (again) which opposes stepping back from the avatarian me to divulge personal information. But this is important — even more so than the last time, when it was good news about moving from Dallas to Indy to regain employment.


Last Sunday morning, I was suddenly (and I do mean suddenly) struck with a change in my vision (the input from each eye no longer overlapped), and the vertigo and nausea you’d expect as a result. The condition went away sufficiently to drive to work Monday and Tuesday, but Wednesday (two days ago as I write this) it came back with a vengeance. Thursday, I cadged a ride from my RL girlfriend to the ER at the local hospital, and spent most of the day there, mostly waiting for a CAT scan and an MRI of my head.

Good news is: both scans uncovered no evidence of a stroke. No surprise to me — I hadn’t felt a loss of any of my usual faculties. Weird news is: the MRI revealed a “mass” on the left temporal lobe of my brain.  The consulting neurologist walked me through the images, and explained that its location probably has no correlation with the vision change… nevertheless, there it is, about 1 cm in diameter, sitting on top of the normal brain tissue.

There are two likely origins: either it’s what he called a “primary tumor”, or a metastasis of cancer elsewhere. The second likelihood will be confirmed or ruled out by another CT scan of neck to crotch (I am, after all, a long term smoker…).  After the day’s ordeal, and the sudden news, I elected not to stay and have that scan done yesterday — so that topic is still in limbo. It’ll be scheduled as an outpatient procedure some time early next week; then the neurologist will call me in to his office to discuss results.

Regardless, the brain lesion itself will need to be biopsied, which requires surgery, and all that you might expect that goes with it: hole saw into my skull (a “cookie craniotomy”, he called it) and removal of the offending tissue – also not scheduled yet, not until after we determine if it’s primary or a metastasis.

Obviously, malignancy (either in the brainbox or elsewhere) will require further treatment — but, as of today, that’s unknown. One big reason why it’s unknown is so I don’t have to spend this weekend under a darker shadow than I already have.


So, there you have it. I’m sorry to dump, but there are too many online/inworld-only friends for whom I have no other channel than Twitter, and this was obviously much more than 140-characters’ worth.

More news as it develops.



12 responses to “Like it is, in RL

  1. Lalo. It’s amazing how quickly these things happen. I’ll be hoping it’s benign or simple or whatever one wishes for good results. I’ll be watching for updates, and thinking good thoughts for you every moment. Chin scratches for Mouse, from me. And hugs for you, Lalo. xoxox

  2. Oh, Lalo, how frightening for you! I will be hoping for the results of the tests ahead to be the most benign and uninvasive possible. Never feel like you’re dumping. We’re the big, disjointed, and terribly dysfunctional family that social media gathers, and we’re here to listen, to send virtual hugs, and to cross fingers with you. Big hugs, and please do keep us posted.

  3. A friend at work had a visual anomaly that led to tests discovering cancer in another part of his body. For him, it was fortunate that the symptom showed up, because it allowed diagnosis and treatment months or even years earlier than otherwise might have occurred. He went through a couple rounds of chemo and is now cancer free, feeling very good and optimistic.

    Like Whiskey, I send best wishes for a good outcome.

  4. Lalo, going through my feed of the day just now I saw others sending their best wishes to you. I had no idea what was going on so I came to your blog (which I admit to being remiss in reading). The news literally smacked the sense out of me, as I know it did you.

    I’ll be paying much closer attention now, and all my best wishes and thoughts are with you.

    B’ezrat HaShem – Elora/Sivyaleah

  5. Hello, everyone. I’m Lalo’s RL partner. He’s been seen by some fine physicians who have connections to the best of the best. Yesterday he received timely and appropriate evaluation. Lalo’s network of RL friends (equally supportive, appropriately diverse, similarly dysfunctional) has rallied behind him, too. My gratitude to each of you for your caring messages.

  6. Lalo and Emspar it is good that you have one another during this scary time. I just know that it will be benign, treatable and that you will come through this in good health after. Take care both and you’re in my thoughts as well.

  7. the vike fog lifts, focus… i’m so sorry, lalo. but what you said – no better friends and family, yes… if only we didnt have to learn it this way, no? but at the least, we do.

  8. Just read your blog post and I’ll admit it knocked the wind from my sails. Been trying to think of what I could say to you that you probably haven’t heard already, so I’ll just paraphrase something that a far wiser and better man said to me over a year ago…

    There aren’t many people in all the pixellated worlds who I admire more than you, Lalo — so don’t be gone long, please? Hoping for success with your biopsy results, your continued good health, and a very long life indeed.

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