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Share your Story

Postby @dmin » Thu Jan 21, 2016 5:57 pm

This is the main Link to share your Cancer Story. All stories are welcome, so please share! :geek: :geek:
My Cancer Essay:
Cancer: A Way to Re-Evaluate Life’s Important Aspects
The first nice day of spring fell on April 4, 2005. My day began at 5 a.m. and ended at 4 p.m. It was an ordinary work and school day. The sun was shinning like a spotlight and the unbearable heat was occasionally broken by a sweet spring breeze. I decided to start my new routine of walking home. Three miles seemed like a breeze after a semester in Tokyo. My jacket clinging to my hips in the newfound spring heat, I regretted leaving my water in my office. While walking, I chatted with my best friend from Korea, Young. After trekking for about 35 minutes, I arrived at my house. With no formal plans, the library’s anime section was beckoning. My best American friend Lauren and I set off on the four block stroll to our local library. The sun was abnormally bright and obtrusive. When I stepped across the threshold of my house, I was amazed by the fluttering dimness of my living room. The subtle sound of the shower resonated through the house. I journeyed through the bedroom to tease my boyfriend of seven years, Kris.
“Get out of the there” I playfully yelled as I banged on the door with both hands, “It’s the police! Come outta there!”
When I turned back towards the living room, my brain was in slow motion. Four steps seemed to take a lifetime. At the door frame, Lauren started to come towards me with a smile on her face. Then I saw the ceiling, the wall, my oriental dresser, Lauren, a confused horror look on her face, the ceiling, the wall, dresser, Lauren. Cold tears were streaming down my face and a strange, unnatural laughter was erupting from someplace deep inside of me. My mind could not grasp what was happening to me. As if miles away, I could hear Kris and Lauren talking. The most I could hear was a vague voice.
“I think she sprained her ankle. She’s laughing and crying like she hurt herself… Maybe she bit her tongue, but she won’t answer me.” Lauren said.
“Honey? What’s wrong? Honey, stop. Come here. Lauren, something’s wrong. Call an ambulance.” Kris blurted.

For me, it was black until I was awoken by the shrill sunshine stabbing my eyes. Paramedics were asking me questions. Their mouths were moving blankly but nothing was registering. Once on the ambulance, fear took over. Desperately I tried to explain that I am terrified of needles. Pain shot through my body as I cried and cried. Kris, who had taken his spot in the front seat, touched my head. I pleaded for him to make them stop sticking me. My memories are a fast forward haze of the Emergency Room doors, and hallways. Medical jargon was flowing like water above my head. The next vivid memory is waiting in Room 16 with Kris and Lauren. After some “routine tests”, I assured them that I was completely healthy. I was merely dehydrated. I apologized for not drinking any water, and asked for a glass. My short, curly blonde Doctor came through the curtain. Her shinny Blue and silver name tag read “Dr. Bohn”. My brain flashed to that early 90’s response of “He He He He Bohn! Her name is Dr. Bohn.” Her grim expression brought me back from my childish thoughts of sexual names.

“We think we found a tumor. You will need an M.R.I. Please take off all metal. I’ll be back in a moment.” She said, as she left the room.

As expected, Lauren and Kris were shocked and scared. My brain relayed to another totally useless response. “It’s not a tumor” the Arnold Schwartzenagger voice resounded. Kindergarten Cop was one of my childhood favorites. After my M.R.I., I was checked into the Neurology Unit. I was incredibly doped up, but I remember small clips of memories like an old damaged movie reel. I met Dr. Nardone, the nuero-surgeon. My family came up to see me from the St. Louis area, and the hospital denied me water. The water memory is crystal clear. I merely wanted a small glass of water. They gave me a tiny cup of crushed ice. My surgery was at 5 a.m. on the 5th so water was prohibited. To my mind, my surgery was instantaneous. I remember waking up early to bright surgery lights and lots of people, then waking up again in my bed with a warm, white stocking cap on my head. To my loved ones, it was several tearful, terrifying hours. Apparently, the surgery was very delicate and could result in a loss of motor skills and brain loss. My tumor was the size of a baseball and grew in around 1-2 months. Dr. Nardone, unbeknownst to me, informed my loved ones of all this terrifying information and graded my tumor as Stage 4. Stage 4 is a terminal stage. My tumor was a Grade 4, not a stage 4, glioblastoma. A glioblastoma is a root like tumor that spreads tumor growing veins through the brain like weeded roots in flower beds. My thought process was to document my life. The day after my surgery, Kris brought my Nikon to capture these moments. My pictures are a happy and optimistic view of a survivor. I started my photo book “Jetty’s Brain Book”. This day affected my whole life and still affects me to this day.