Cancer: Is it an Orange…or a Brain Tumor?

July, 2014. During the ambulance ride to the new hospital, I have no idea what is happening. My mind is swirling around between disbelief and shock. I think I am dizzy. I think I am nauseous. We arrive. I’m taken into a large room and meet Dr. S, a neurosurgeon. After a magnetic resonance imaging scan (MRI), Dr S tells me I have a brain tumor the size of an orange in my head. My mind is saying, “Who put the orange in my head? Who put the orange in my head?” over and over again.

RUPTURE!!! Next, I am hearing that my brain tumor is in “First Stage Rupture” and he is performing surgery in the morning.

Dr. S is very kind as he tells me the operation could leave me paralyzed on my right side, blind in my right eye, or unable to speak. I am thinking, “Who the HELL put the orange in my head!”. He is no longer talking to my brain. He is the narrator in a terrifying nightmare I am having. His words hang in the air in front of my eyes. Soon, I will wake up and go to my job at Sears. I seem to remember my family standing over me and crying. I am saying, “goodbyes” from the the top deck of a cruise ship, I am bidding bon voyage before I go on a long cruise. I never had surgery before. Now, they are cutting into my head. Jesus Christ!

SLEEP. I wake up in a new room. I quickly move my hands. Now, my feet move. All ten toes. Yeah, I see everything!! I scream out. Ha! I hear myself. I can talk, too.

I spent the night in ICU. Lots of nurses fiddled with me endlessly. I go in and out of sleep. There is something wrapped around my head. And it is TIGHT! I am wondering the whole time, “Do I have a hole in my head.”. Nurses were taking off whatever Dr. S put on my head. My mom was there now. I was thinking, “I love my mom”. She looked at me with a horrified stare. The nurse had a mirror. What for? I looked up into the mirror and screamed at the “Stranger in the Mirror”. Who the hell was that? Me?! No Way! As I realized who it was, screaming and crying burst out of me. I really lost it. Dr. S came in and told me the pathology report came in and it was a high grade glioblastoma multiforme.

Do you have Cancer? How did you find out? What were your symptoms?


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