Stories about aneurysms aren’t often good ones. In fact, according to the Brain Aneurysm Foundation every eighteen minutes someone suffers a ruptured aneurysm. Nearly half of those people die. Ana Tovar not only beat the odds, it seemed almost impossible she would suffer a brain illness in the first place. “Everything happens for a reason,” Tovar says with tears in her eyes.
Have you ever had the feeling God was trying to tell you something? That’s how Tovar says she feels after surviving a brain aneurysm, which is amazing in itself, now consider this. Tovar has been the office manager for a brain injury doctor for years. In 2006, Tovar’s 19-year-old son Ariel Mack Franco suffered a traumatic brain injury in a motorcycle accident. “He was such a good kid. He really was,” says Tovar. After surviving seven years and thirty-six surgeries Mack passed away in July 2013. His mom fell into a dark depression. Then in late March of 2014 Tovar fainted in a public place and someone called 911. “They (paramedics) looked me over. I refused to go to the hospital. I felt I didn’t have to. The next day I was going through the same symptoms. I felt I was going to faint”.
She went to the emergency room and couldn’t believe she too was suffering a brain illness. Tovar had a brain aneurysm, the same thing that killed her sister. Tovar was rushed into a six hour brain surgery.
Tovar was only out of work one month. Her surgery scar is just about the only lasting damage. She made a full recovery and says miraculously the aneurysm made her appreciate life again and pulled her out of the sadness of losing her son. She says she now has an even greater connection with her patients. Tovar also says she feels the reason behind all of this is so she can encourage other brain injury patients not to be afraid and not to give up. “I don’t give up. I do not give up and I have an awesome angel looking over me,” smiles Tovar.
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Thank you to Damali Keith for writing the story; My Fox Houston for committing its resources to publishing the story; Brain Aneurysm Foundation for supplying some facts used in the article; Google for helping me find the story; and all the people who, directly or indirectly, made it possible for me to include the picture, video, and text I used in this post.