My husband, the zebra

I use to always tell Brad his spirit animal was an Elephant and I was a peacock. He would jokingly yell that fat jokes are not nice and I would defend myself claiming Elephants like him have a great memory. Peacocks, on the other hand, were bold, beautiful and oh so forgetful.
Our little routine often played out as a result of my bad listening skills and was the trademark conversation of our marriage. Based on no facts and pulled straight out of the blue, I used my animal analogy as the explanation for Brad’s overachieving competencies and my normal brain, but stellar good looks.

Over the past four months, I have determined that maybe my very well thought out analysis of his spirit animal was wrong. As of meeting the new doctor yesterday, I have determined that Brad is actually a zebra!

“When you hear hoofbeats, think of horses not zebras!”

In the medical community, there is a simple saying taught to remind folks to look at the most obvious explanation. When you hear hoofbeats, it should logically be a horse… right? Well in our case, we are lucky that Brad is a zebra! Being a horse would have resulted in a brain tumor. Finding the horse is what we tried to do for four months. Many educated people looked for those logical horses, but the hoofbeats didn’t belong there. Thank God!

Yesterday, we met with a neuroimmunologist. I swear this is not a made up word even though it sounds like Dr. Seuss himself crafted it. Dr. Shanin spent 90 minutes reviewing Brad’s case with us. He knew that horses were ruled out and went straight to hoofbeats belonging to a Zebra. While he has some ideas of what it might be, he even is double checking prior work to make sure the interpretation of the hoofbeats were right. As D is unique and can’t check all boxes of any diagnosis, I am thrilled with rechecking. The newest hunch is autoimmune disease and vasculitis. While we seem to be now pointing the right direction, I have learned not to cling on to a hunch. For all, we know this zebra might be rainbow striped and turn out not to be this hunch at all.

So like many doctor appointment’s before, we do not know much about the long-term outcome, but we do know the steps needed to get us closer to naming D.

  • Blood work
  • MRI of brain and spine
  • Present findings to another case review (This will be the third time Brad’s zebra case has gone to a review like this)
  • Possible spinal tap

We meet with Dr. Shanin again on March 2nd. Until then, we will live by this little tale.

Each morning on the African savannah, a Lion wakes up.
The Lion knows that to eat, it must be faster than the slowest Zebra.
At the same time, a Zebra wakes up.
The Zebra knows that to survive, it must be faster than the fastest Lion.
The moral is ………
It doesn’t matter whether you’re a Lion or Zebra.
When the sun comes up, you better start running.

Brad is good at running in the figurative sense of course. In our 11 years together, I have only seen him actually run once. 🙂 Every day, you got to wake up and try your hardest to make the most of the day. Frankly, you gotta start running.

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