Shortly after of my second child turned one and his older sister three, I began to notice I would get a sharp pain in my head when I was reaching upward. We decided to make sure it was nothing serious so I made an apiontment with the local neurologist. When the neurolist called me to set up an appointment to discuss my MRI he suggested that I not come alone. I thought this odd, but decided I was probably worried about nothing. My husband accompanied me to his office when the bomb dropped: I HAD A BRAIN TUMOR!! I was only thirty-two, had two small children.
The doctor then told us it was in my brainstem and would be in-operable and estimated that I would have 6 months to 2 years to live. My children might not even remember their mother! My husband refused to accept this and refused to let me give up. We sent copies of my MRI to several different hospitals in the country and they confirmed the news that my tumor was inoperable. We went to Houston to do a needle-point biopsy although there were some risks involved. The news that we received was heart breaking. I had an Anaplastic Astrosytoma in my brainstem.
The needle-point in that part of my brain left me with double vision and extremely depressed. I had to do chemotherapy or radiation for the next three years before I became stable. During this time, I developed TTP and spent 30 days in the hospital and had to go on dialysis for an additional three months as a result of the chemo.Lost my hair, started to loose my hearing, but my husband wouldn’t let me lose hope. After three years they judged my tumor as stable. Although I had to deal with side affects from my previous treatment, I remained stable for nine beautiful years before my family once again we wereshaken by the news that my tumor was active again. This time I only had to stay on chemo a year before it became stable. This road started for me seventeen years ago. My daughter is in college and my son getting ready to finish high school.
A LONG ROAD but don’t lose hope. You survive one day at a time. I don’t now when the next time I will come out of remission is but I now dream of seeing my daughter marry and getting to hold grandchildren.