Story of shock, hope and healing.

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June 11, 2016 - Forsyth, Montana

Months before my brain tumor was discovered I was nauseous on and off, and felt dizzy quite often. I was moving, planning a wedding, had gotten a new job, and simply chalked it up to stress. I woke up Monday morning the week of my wedding feeling sick once again, my fiance had gone to work and I figured I would get through the nausea by myself no problems. Hours went by and I couldn't stop throwing up, I had never felt so helpless and sick in my life. I had called for help from a few friends but everyone was out of town, and I called the local hospital for an appointment (figuring I could drive myself there) but shortly after I called I lost my eye sight. I passed out on the floor of my house and was woken up by a friend who hado come to check on me and she ends up rushing me to the ER. Shortly after I arrived I had a seizure in the bathroom, and passed out. The doctors quickly admitted me and realized I had a pulse of 33. My problem quickly worsened and they kept asking me if I had and medical issues; to be honest that was the first time I had ever been in the hospital and I had no idea what was happening to me. I was in and out of conscientious and they did test after test on me and had no idea what was wrong. I flat lined 3 times, had a pulse of 26 and it looked dim for me for a while. They had decided to admit me to a larger hospital an hour and a half away because they didn't have all the technology to help me like the other hospital did. Before they airlifted me they did a spinal tap, a x-ray, and a head CT. My head CT showed a black mass covering the left upaper quarter of my brain. They quickly took me to the larger hospital and neurosurgeons begin examining me, it turned out that I had a tennis ball sized cyst full of spinal fluid on the top part of my head and directly behind my eye I had a egg sized tumor. On my twentieth birthday I was rushed into a 12 hour surgery to remove both masses, they were worried I may possibly loose sight in my eye, my sense of smell and possibly my taste. Once my craniotomy was done I made the personal decision to have the best possible attitude I could have. I was in constant pain, and was so sad my wedding had to be postponed but I knew I had to remember how lucky I was to be able to have the chance to see my family, my fiance and my friends again. That choice really effected the way I recovered, I made each day a good day and because of that I think I really helped my recovery process. I was up and walking a few days after surgery and had seemed to be doing fine. After spending a week and a half at the hospital I was released but shortly after I was home I noticed fluid leaking from my incesion. I was re-admitted and rushed into a second surgery where they fixed my sutures, put staples over them and drained fluid from my head. I spent another 5 days in the hospital and even though I felt frustrated and in pain I kept a good attitude because I kept reminding myself how blessed I am for getting one more day. The day I left the hospital I was told my tumor was benign, and my doctor said even though it could come back it is less likely than they were thinking. I am now home and healing and looking forward to the things ahead of me, and also being greatful for each and every day. Looking back on my childhood I was a relatively healthy kid and showed very few signs of having a tumor. I had some sight issues (occasionally had a lazy eye after reading for hours) and I had migraines occasionally, I played sports all througout high-school and was a straight A student. So the thought of having a tumor was something that never crossed my mind. It really made me realize how little I knew about Brain tumors, their syptoms, and the treatment needed to eridicate them. It has become a mission of mine to share my story and raise awarness. I urge parents to educate themselves on tumor symptoms, and watch their children or loved ones for signs. I also hope that if a sign ever arises that the child or adult will have the opportunity to have a head CT to assure there are no masses or tumors on the brain. You never know what you may be able to catch before it becomes a problem.