Hiccups. An occasional migraine. Eye strain. Neck pain. Fatigue. Numbness in hands. These were my symptoms. Rarely did they ever occur at once. I thought it was stress, getting older, too much computer time, lack of sleep, not eating right.
On April 13, 2018, I made two phone calls that would change my life: The first was to book a massage that afternoon. The second was to 911 – just before 6PM. After the massage, I stumbled to my feet and realized something was clearly off. Everything was in slow motion. Hours later, I got up from the couch and took one step forward with my right foot. It was 5:01PM. This is all I remember. A moment later, I passed out for a solid ten minutes.
I woke up to find myself flat on my back in the middle of the floor. I’d felt no pain, no sensation of falling. I stared at my outstretched right arm and realized: My arms and legs were paralyzed, but my mind was completely and entirely conscious. Eventually, my limbs s-l-o-w-l-y came back to life. Somehow, I reached my phone to call 911.
Later, they told me: Brain tumors. Four of them. Brain surgery was the only way forward. Ten days later, I’d have my first of two brain surgeries, taking a journey few will ever experience.