Then in early 2017, she had back pain that was running down her left leg and her family noticed her speech was beginning to slur.
She had an MRI on a Friday and was sent home in February. That's when the seizures started.
Doctors at Sebring Hospital were mystified and after a several-day stay sent her home and told her to come back if the problems happened again. She went home and within 48 hours couldn't manage to pour a cup a coffee. The seizures were back. Family had her taken to a different hospital this time and she was immediately rushed her to Tampa General Hospital. There as a 10-day stay in ICU. There was a brain biopsy. And finally the diagnosis. This vibrant grandmother who was looking forward to family and travel was diagnosed with Glioblastoma Multiforme. It was in both sides of her brain.
At the urging of her children - Doug, Tammy and Jodi- Sandy and David moved to Columbus, Ohio, so she could be treated at the James Hospital connected with The Ohio State University. The care has been extraordinary. And her fight has been legendary. Chemo. Radiation. Electromagnetic Therapy. Avastin. Immunotherapy. There is nothing she won't try to keep this terrible cancer at bay.
At times, it has stripped her of all freedoms - walking, talking, thinking - but she pushes on. She fights for her life and she fights for her family.
Early on, she made the choice that when she dies - hopefully years from now - that her body be dedicated to science. She wants others to learn so no one has to go through this disease. So if you give on behalf of her, know it's a good cause and that SJ, as she is lovingly called, will never give up the fight.
Each day, 500 people will be diagnosed with a brain tumor. To show my support, I will be participating in the American Brain Tumor Association's BT5K Breakthrough for Brain Tumors Run & Walk. Money raised by the BT5K will provide critical funding for brain tumor research and for supportive patient care.
You can support me in my efforts by making a donation to the American Brain Tumor Association.
Click on "Donate Now" to donate safely and securely.
Your donation not only supports brain tumor patients and their families but it also supports the breakthrough research to improve, extend and ultimately save lives.
And remember, your donation is tax-deductible! You can learn more about the American Brain Tumor Association at www.abta.org. Thank you in advance for your support of my efforts on behalf of brain tumor patients, their families, and the researchers pursuing the breakthroughs.