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Who it hurt more than me..

Posts: 4
Joined: Oct 2012

Hi, my name is Ashley. I am 17 years old, and I am a survivor of brain cancer. On April 26,2012, I had a seizure while getting ready for school. They did a MRI and discovered that I had brain tumors in my left frontal lobe. On May 29th, I had a crainotomy. They removed two tumors (Stage 2 Glioma) and a "satellite lesion." Everything went incredibly better than expected, and I was released from the hospital only TWO days after surgery. Six weeks after surgery, at a time that I was supposed to be lying in bed doing nothing, I was able to attend and complete training at the George N. Parks Drum Major Academy. I was very blessed to not have a severe form, and I am currently cancer free, although I am experiencing mild seizures as a result of surgery.

I am a Christian and honestly believe that the way everything worked out was a miracle.

However, my family does not necessarily share the same view. My uncle was diagnosed with bladder cancer a year before I was diagnosed, and he has had an incredibly difficult time. When some of my family members heard the news about my diagnosis, they became angry, not just toward God, but toward everyone.

My best friend was on his senior trip when I got the news, so it hit him in the face when he got back. He was there for me through everything, sat with me at the hospital all day every day, talked to me every night, and prayed for me constantly. (In the process of typing this, he actually called to check on me because he was worried about me since I forgot to text him back.)

I love these people very much, but my cancer has and is still hurting them even more than it has hurt me. I have watched them refuse to eat, cry until they were dehydrated, and worry until they were literally sick over me, and every time I go for a check up, it happens all over again.

I'm not exactly sure what I'm asking for here. Maybe it's prayer or advice. I just can't stand to watch my sickness hurt the people I love any more, and I don't know what to do. I'm only 17, I don't know how to handle this. If you have any advice or anything, it would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

alutiiqmom's picture
Posts: 256
Joined: Jun 2011

In 2011, my 17 year old daughter, Sarah, was diagnosed with a brain tumor in the left frontal lobe. She had surgery and they got 80 - 90 %. Then she had 6 weeks of radiation followed by a year of chemo. It was beyond difficult. It is so hard to see a loved one suffer. I love your attitude! With the grace that you have shown, your family and friends will come around. My faith has grown tremendously but it still gets hard. Sarah has a speech impairment, she has trouble with school and writing. Her friends do not stay in touch with her. She was blessed to finish her senior year and graduate. She was an honor student and now I watch her struggle. My heart hurts. I pray whenever I struggle. Sarah is now 19 years old. She is going to college part-time. We are blessed with her presence every day. You are blessed to have friends stay with you. Count your blessings everyday. Let me know if want to get in touch with Sarah - you can help each other.You can email me at edna@camai.com if you want to reach out to Sarah.
Take care and God Bless you !

Posts: 4
Joined: Oct 2012

Thank you so much for your comment. It's wonderful to know that there are people out there who understand the situation. Your daughter sounds like an amazing person and I would love to get in touch with her. I'll send you an email soon. Once again, I just want to say thank you for taking the time to read this and respond. It's very encouraging to hear stories of others persevering. Seeing this completely made my day.

PBJ Austin
Posts: 347
Joined: Mar 2009

And that's a good thing!!

My sister was 25 years old in March 2009 when she was diagnosed with AA3. She was exactly like you in that she had a great attitude and from day one she was determined to beat the cancer.

The doctors said she had 3-7 years to live and we were told there would be no remission. Except for kid sis the rest of us were devastated. We cried all the time and we imagnined every worst case scenario possible. However kid sis didn't bat an eye, she didn't believe it and she said she will be OK.

In spite of the grim prognosis kid sis went into remission in less than a year!! The doctors at MD Anderson said they have never seen such a fast remission for AA3. It has now been about 2 1/2 years since her remission began and she's still going strong.

Getting back to your question about what to do. My kid sis got so tired of the crying and gloom and doom from the rest of us, one day she just told us that she doesn't want to hear it anymore. She did not say it rudely but she made it clear that we all need to cut it out. Strangely this gave me a great sense of comfort. That's when I knew kid sis was a fighter and she could beat cancer. You could also remind them that so much progress has been made in cancer treatment it's really not the death sentence it used to be. And as time goes by there will be more and more survivors and happy stories like yours and my kid sis'.

I am in awe of people like you and my kid sis. Please continue to keep your great attitude and spread your positive vibes to others. This world needs more people like you.

Posts: 4
Joined: Oct 2012

That is so wonderful for your sister! What an incredible story. She seems like a very strong person, and I'm very impressed by her positive attitude. It's great to hear that other survivors are getting good news like hers.

As for your advice, thank you. It's really helpful. It's hard for me to know exactly what to say because my perspective on the situation is a bit different than the people around me, so it's nice to have the input of someone on the outside.

Thank you for taking the time to share your story, and for the encouragement. It means a lot.

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