Above all, my family is most important to me. My partner, Angel, and my three boys have been so supportive since my diagnosis. When I started noticing my left hand becoming less coordinated, I thought I was developing carpal tunnel syndrome. After a few months of not improving, I visited my primary physician and said I needed an MRI. As a nurse, I figured I had suffered a stroke or had a brain tumor. My own doctor didn’t believe it, but agreed to the MRI. Afterwards, I took the disk with the scans home and saw the tumor for myself.
I was diagnosed in July of 2009 with a Grade 3 Anaplastic Astrocytoma tumor in the right frontal lobe of my brain—the section that controls movement on the body’s left side. Doctors removed most of the tumor, but left some of it as to not restrict the function of my left leg. The use of my left hand is gone, and my arm is weak. As a result, I can no longer work as a nurse.
Even though I have this diagnosis, it is not the end of the world. I had my treatment, and I am getting on with my life. I’m interested in helping other people avoid what I’ve gone through. Volunteering with the Race for Hope in Philly, and now being a part of Get Your Head In The Game®, I feel like we are making progress everyday. I want to get the word out, because the more people that know about brain tumors, the more people will donate to find a cure!