Hello. My name is Wendy and I’m a brain tumor/cancer survivor.
On the evening of October 15, 2014, a mere two weeks before my son’s ninth birthday I had a grand mal seizure while reading with him in his bed.
The seizure struck suddenly, and I didn’t know what was happening. I was frozen in a fetal position and I couldn’t speak. I literally felt an electrical surge run through my body and it was as if I had somehow short-circuited. Thankfully, my son noticed something was wrong, and he called out to my husband.
As I was drifting in and out of consciousness, I remember thinking I was having a stroke and dying. In my mind, I pleaded with God to not let me die that night in my son’s bed.
My husband ended up calling the paramedics and they took me to a local hospital. When I came to, I still couldn’t speak but somehow, I was able to push out the word ‘stroke’. Suddenly, I was whisked off for a CT Scan of my brain followed by an MRI and throughout this entire time, I continued to drift in and out of consciousness.
The next thing I knew I was in a hospital room and my husband was there. I remember a doctor informing us that a mass was seen on my brain scans but all I heard was; blah, blah, blah, brain tumor, blah, blah, blah…biopsy.
A few days later a biopsy was performed and the brain tumor diagnosis was confirmed. I wasn’t scared during this time as I was still in shock. Elated that I didn’t die in my son’s bed, I was also thankful that this was happening to me rather than him or my husband.
On December 9, 2014, Dr. Linda Liau and her team at UCLA performed a craniotomy to remove as much of the visible tumor as possible. Recovery from the craniotomy has been a long process as the tumor was large---located in my left frontal lobe---and split between my supplementary language and motor structures. As I worked to regain my speech, the ability to walk and so forth; I was blessed with support from my family and friends in addition to some of the best physical, speech and occupational therapists around. The American Brain Tumor Association has been a great resource for me as well and that's one of the reasons why I'm participating in the BT5K run/walk Los Angeles.
P.S. A few months ago I set up a blog: http://2ndchance2live.com to share what I have learned with anyone who is interested. The purpose of the blog is to document my experiences, memories, and self-discoveries. I have read several books and stories about others who have had similar experiences, and each has helped me to get to a place of acceptance of my new normal. My ultimate hope is that by sharing my journey others will find their way to acceptance and be comforted by the knowledge that they are not alone.
My Personal Web Log
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