Hello! Part of my brain was removed 9 years ago, AMA!
Bio: Greeting fellow jellybags, my name is AceBobcat. I am an epilepsy survivor. I was born with the disease, as well as a rare tumor called a DNET (Dysembryoplastic NeuroEpithelial Tumor). I had the tumor taken out at age 7, but my seizures only seemed to worsen over time. At age 14 I had my entire Right Temporal Lobe and part of my Parietal Lobe removed. November will be the 10th anniversary of my second surgery. I live a relatively normal life now, I function like any regular person would. I haven't had a seizure in nearly 10 years.
A few extra facts about me: I was born in Okinawa, Japan, and grew up in Kansas City, MO. I'm bisexual. My favorite author is Edgar Allen Poe. I love penguins. I've also been suffering from depression for 2 years. I'm am avid wrestling fan and a gamer. And I think Back to the Future III was the best of the trilogy.
proof: Me now (nsfw- the bird): http://m.imgur.com/xYH2Jds
My twitter feed: twitter.com/AceBobcat I post plenty of pictures of myself there.
A shot of my scar from 4 years ago when you could actually see it: http://m.imgur.com/c50Wi1R
My YouTube of you want video proof: YouTube.com/acebobcat
Edit: Alright! This has been fun! Thank you for all of the questions, I enjoyed both reading and answering them all! Let's do this again sometime! Ciao!
My mother was in the military when my father (also in the military) knocked her up. They were both stationed in Okinawa during the Gulf War.
Does that give you any sort of citizenship in Japan?
Nope. I was born on the Air Force Base, technically American soil.
Question: Do you even anime, bro?
Dude, when I take dumps, when I scream, my hair turns yellow.
did you keep it? was the option of keeping it even brought up? would it not be totally cool to have a jar full of formaldehyde with a chunk of your own brain floating around in it?
Lmao, it would be pretty sweet, now that I think about it. If I bring a girl home, it'd be like "So this is my bedroom, and this is part of my brain..."
Edit: I did not get to keep my brain. It never actually came up!
In a zombie apocalypse, would you feel you have an edge in survival since zombies might be less attracted to your incomplete brain?
I don't think I'd have an edge in that capacity. I do think I'd have an edge because I think I'm smarter than most people. lol.
The amount of down votes to this is fascinating.
There's, what, two reasons to downvote this? 1) people dislike the fact everyone's not the same and disapprove of the fact that advantages such as intelligence are actually advantageous. Because of this, 2) people perceive a collective mentality as superior, regardless of circumstances. They'll stand next to billybob and be perfectly fine going with the flow and not taking a personal vestment into a subject.
Being smart and more mobile, able to better understand the world around you, and make any decision in it with greater efficiency and timeliness would be a quality any surviving humans better hope they have to rebuild society. Unless the situation forces you to be jampacked into camps like sardines due to sheer numbers of zombies.. Where you're forced to be vulnerable to the lesser people's decisions. Then you're just a body.
The loss of individuality in today's culture is so depressing. The notion that excellence is detested and looked down upon by the populace (of USA) is a horrifying aspect of today's society.
I'm pretty sure it was downvoted because people perceive it as arrogance, which is true of me to some extent. If you call not being modest about your intelligence arrogance, then yes, I am one arrogant motherfucker.
If you could have would you tried cooking and eating it ?
What would you do if after the surgery you discovered the you could read minds. The Right temporal lobe was actually inhibiting your power, and the surgery unleashed it. Would you use your new found power to discover what women want - like Mel Gibson in that movie... Mad Max i think it was called?
I think that, for a certain time at least, I would. Then, after a while, I would start to become cynical and just say "Fuck the world," due to what and how much I was hearing.
Aren't you already cynical for assuming that you'd hear bad things?
Faster than I would have.
There was only one Jesus. He's dead.
"He never existed."
If you don't belive in his teaching, whatever, but he influenced most of the western world regaurdlss if he was divine.
There was a Jesus.
Actually, what I said isn't true. There's a Mexican guy at work named Jesus.
Apparently none of his teachings included spelling.
How has this effected your fine/general motor skills if at all?
P.S. Edgar is the best! <3
The only side effect from the surgery was I lost a little peripheral vision in my upper left corner of my eye.
PS: You're damn right, he is!
I had part of my brain removed as well. My brain surgery was about 7 months ago and I am luckily recovering way better than the doctors predicted. I rarely speak of it to people and most people around me don't understand what i went through. Most of it was a mental thing (no pun intended lol). I'm a father of a little girl and it was kind of torturous for me to think that she might grow up without a dad. She did nothing to deserve that... Anyways, thanks for sharing. It's nice to hear from others who have gone through brain surgery. I rarely talk about it. My question is: how has this been mentally for you? My neurosurgeon told me the tumor is coming back and we will deal with it when it happens. Do you worry about things like that? Do you appreciate the little things more now? I've noticed that it's difficult to stop and smell the roses all the time.
My problem is I smell the roses too much. I never really let thoughts like that bother me. I mean, at first, I worried if I was actually cured, but 10 years down the line, somewhere along the way you forget about it, and you relax. I've always kind if taken things in stride. "Oh this it's a thing? That's a bit concerning. Oh it's gone now? Cool."
Of course, I don't have the pressure of having a cold to take care of, and the worry of how she'll be taken care of if I die. I wish you the best if lick in your recovery, brother. My father was never really there for me (or my brother, whom I've only recently gotten into contact with), but I admire those who actually try to be loving fathers. I want you to be the best god damn father you can be. Love her unconditionally.
Have you had an IQ test done? Has this in any way affected your intelligence?
I have not. I want to, though. As far as I know, I've been the same I've always been, save the epileptic fits.
Neuroscientist here, always interested to hear the personal stories. Do you really not have any motor/memory/etc problems?
Nope. I think I was young enough for my LTL to take over for my RTL.
Did you get to see the parts of your brain that they removed?
Nope but I did get to see the tumor!
Did you have a long recovery from the surgery? As in, relearning how to function in any capacity.
It took about a few days to a week for me to recover. I never really had to relearn anything. I was still me!
It looks like you left so this may be too late but I'll ask anyway.
Do you know if they removed part or all of your right claustrum? Or the insular lobe directly medial to it?
Also, did you notice any difference in your consciousness as a result of the removal that you had to adjust to over time?
All I know is that they removed my entire right temporal lobe. I don't think they removed the entire claustrum.
Nope. Other than the fact that I was blacking out half the time before and now I'm not, no particular change in consciousness.
A friend of mine in college had a large portion of his brain removed when he was three years old and his scar looked a lot like yours. However, you could tell he wasn't like everybody else. He seemed a little spaced out at all times and would regularly miss normal social cues. He was also embarrassed very easily and really had no sense of humor.
Do you think you have any issues or anything due to your surgeries or anything?
Nope. I come equipped with a large sense of humor, as well as vast knowledge of languages and science.
What's a seizure like? What's your favorite of Poe's work, and what's your favorite video game?
It depends on the seizure actually. Sometimes you just black out, sometimes you just have a weird feeling in your head, and if you have a seizure in your sleep, you have really weird dreams. I dreamt I was boxing a giant rat once.
My favorite work of Poe's is either The Raven or Tell Tale Heart. I also enjoy The Cask of Amontillado.
Favorite game is either GTA V, or Deus Ex: Human Revolution. I tend to enjoy games with great stories and freedom of choices.
Do you notice difference from other people that you associate to a result of your surgery ?
Nope. Maybe because I rarely associated with anyone to begin with! :)
I've always been able to be social, but I've preferred to be in my own company most of the time, where I am at peace with my thoughts.
Do you ever forget something that should be easily remembered? (ex.city born in, middle name of father, etc.)
Well, I have a very selective memory, so all the important things are there. Although, I always forget the first 3 numbers off my social security.
It's probably 603.
It's actually 873
This may sound like a very stupid question but I really have no idea if I'll ever have the chance to ask anyone. Do they put something in place of what they removed? If not, does the area just fill up with fluid or something? Does the extra space make a hazard for the rest of your brain, like in a car accident or something, your brain has more jiggle room and thus more hazzard to hit your skull harder?
Nope. Nothing in the place. They just glued the skull back on and it filled up with spinal fluid from there.
Did you notice any change in worldview? I have a friend who sustained serious brain damage in an accident who reported rediscovering god. I personally interpret that as becoming reconnected with his higher self, his inner voice, or however else you can secular-ly describe "it." I've wondered how much of his experience could be attributed to neurological change versus the trauma of being in a near death experience. By the way, I'm glad you are living a comfortable life post-op!
Not from the surgery or anything to do with my condition, but after a breakup, I changed my world view by a lot. I actually used to worry about what other people thought of be. After watching The Breakfast Club a zillion times, one line always stuck with me.
"We're all pretty bizarre. Some of us are just better art hiding it, that's all."
I decided to embrace myself, and my personality, no matter how bizarre. If they can't handle me, uncensored, unmitigated me, then they're not worth my time.
Do you take Topomax for the seizures? Do you get migraines? Did the surgery affect your personality much like Phineas Gage? Do you attend a TBI support group? TBI patient myself so thank you for this AMA and sorry for the barrage. ;)
I think I took Topomax, Kepra, and another drug. I don't think it effected my personality at all. If anything, I think the time away from human contact effected me more so. I took a year of home school before I went to high school. That scared the shit out of me. So. Many. People. lol. I got over it after High School, now I don't care what other people think of me!
I never attended any support group. Dealt with it all by myself! Looking back, though, it kinda woulda been helpful :)
The brain is amazing. Always just a matter of which area is affected. Best wishes to you.
Thank you! :)
Why were you born in japan round eye?
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