September 28, 2017 was the hardest day of my life. After a long and hard fought battle with a brain tumor, I lost my mom. In honor of my mom and the struggle she endured, I am training and actively qualifying for the NYC Marathon, which includes this race, the NYC Half Marathon. Every step and every breath I take will be for her since she is no longer here to do that. Every time I run, I remind myself that I am doing something my mom couldn’t do in her final months. Please support me on this journey in raising money for a cause that means so much to me. Thank you all for your support.
In January of 2010 my mom was diagnosed with Meningioma, a benign brain tumor. As a family, we were all hopeful of the outcome of the condition based on the doctor early prognosis. He was optimistic and assured us that surgery would be able to remove a majority of the tumor. The next couple of years seemed to prove that the doctor was right with routine MRI’s showing no changes, but just when we thought she was in the clear, to our surprise and disappointment, we were told that the tumor had grown back. Despite aggressive medical efforts like Gamma Knife and Proton Therapy, the tumor was relentless and continued to grow in size while debilitating my mom. Things that people take for granted were slowly ripped away from her. Over time she needed to have one of her eyes removed, lost her hearing in one ear, suffered facial paralysis on half of her face, endured memory loss, slurred speech, and eventually could not walk or take care of herself. It was devastating to see someone so full of life become a shell of her former self. As time went on and abilities were stolen from her, she was depressed and no longer the person we once knew.
In May of 2017, she was admitted to the ER and little did we know, but this was the beginning of the end. In a four-month time span we quickly saw our mom deteriorate before our eyes. She no longer could feed herself, but instead was hooked up to feeding tubes and required a blood transfusion. A month after her stay in the hospital she was sent to a nursing home where we were in hopes of her to recover only to be told that hospice was the next step. In July, she returned home in the hands of hospice care. My mom was a hostage in her own home and her own body. All day she laid in a hospice bed where she would lay in silence and during meals she would be transported in her wheelchair where she would be spoon-fed like a child. Some days I was lucky to get a word out of her. The days of having back and forth conversations where long gone. If I was lucky, she would know who I was as her memory was affected. By far, this was the hardest thing I have yet to experience. On September 28, 2017, I watched my mom take her last breaths as I said my final good byes. It is a day that I will never forget and I often replay that scene in my head. Today, January 17, 2019, on what would have been her 71st birthday, I decided to start this fundraiser so I can make a difference and help others and their families who have been affected to aide in the continued research for brain tumor awareness.
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 Team Breakthrough Endurance program. Money raised 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.