9.11.2020 - A Day I'll Never Forget

Updated: Oct 20, 2020

In the early morning hours of Friday, September 11th, 2020 an MRI was ordered to give the neurosurgeon a better idea of what he was dealing with. I sat in my room and anxiously waited for him to come by and midmorning I got the results. It was a tumor! I had hoped this wasn't the case but, in my heart, I can't say this was a total surprise. The diagnosis was pretty sobering. It was a mass that looked to be approximately 2" x 2" x .5". It wasn't there when I had an MRI in 2019 so the tumor had an aggressive growth trajectory. My first thought was "is it malignant?" but it was too early to tell. To complicate matters, it appeared to have grown a hook that now extended into my sinus cavity. This at least helped to explain the tremendous pressure I had been feeling in the back of my head.

The medical team at Baylor Scott & White planned an craniotomy for early in the following week. In spite of hearing this, there was good news since the tumor was clearly defined and had a firm shape which, hopefully, improved the chances of a successful removal. These factors gave my Doctor confidence that he would be able to remove it completely which also gave me encouragement. In this stressful situation I was hungry for any good news. With the prognosis looking positive, I started to mentally prepare myself to have brain surgery in several days. I was ready to get the surgery behind me and get on with my life. I didn't have time for a tumor, since I was busy with real estate, volunteering for Building Homes for Heroes and chasing my grandchildren. I had things to do, and sitting in a hospital room for an extended period wasn't one of them. Like others, I've always tried to "control" things in my life to minimize hurts and disappointments but all at once I felt like I was losing control and this left me very unsettled. I was being asked to make decisions that I never thought I'd have to make especially since 24 hrs ago I thought I was "ok". It's interesting how quickly things can change - 2 weeks prior to my trip to the ER I had traveled to Georgetown, TX to do a groundbreaking ceremony and then onto San Antonio to spend the weekend with my granddaughters.

In addition to having to mentally prepare for brain surgery, my husband and I now had to inform our children that their mother had an aggressive brain tumor and that they were going to operate in a few days. As these phone calls were made, the gravity of my situation became clearer each time I heard Greg say "she has a brain tumor." With the calls made, the troops were rallied and on their way. I looked forward to seeing my children soon and resigned myself to the battle ahead.

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