Going through brain surgery to remove a ginormous tumor—and living a blessed life afterward—gives me a glimpse of the realization that not everyone is as fortunate as I am.
Without a doubt, I thank God every morning before my feet hit the floor for the opportunity to live one more day. I understand what it’s like to see the possible end of my life come into focus. I understand what comes with looking out into the “ever after”.
I spend a lot of time writing and speaking on the peace that comes with a relationship with Christ–while even having a brain tumor. However, I think we sometimes forget (I know I do) that there may be a process needed to go through to attain complete peace—what is found in the arms of Jesus. Glenda Weldy tells of her period of time caregiving her husband Roger, as he battled a brain tumor. You can find her journey at http://glendaweldy.com/. As I read Chapter 12, my heart broke. Let’s never forget caregivers and the pain they endure.
It’s so easy to become weary when you spend so much of your life broken. People seldom talk about it. But don’t you think we should celebrate leaving a place of brokenness? We may end up broken again, but how sweet it is to realize we’ve been restored. That’s what happened to me. Here’s a short list of my own experiences:
Glioblastoma (GBM) is the most common and most aggressive malignant primary brain tumor in humans, accounting for 52% of all functional tissue brain tumor cases and 20% of all intracranial tumors. GBM kills 12,000 people a year. CBS 60 Minutes’ March 29, 2015, episode, Killing Cancer, has been the topic of conversation in many brain tumor survivor circles.
Running up and down steps with ease. That’s the memory from before brain surgery that bothers me the most. I miss that skill. Now I hold on to the rail that offers support. It’s just a bit of support, but I rely on it being there.
Enjoying jigsaw puzzles is another loss I face. When I look at a tabletop covered with 500 pieces of disjointed cardboard and break into a sweat. My mind is filled with chaos and I need to walk literally away from the table.
My dog, Oreo, was a master at waiting. But for me, waiting–especially for medical news–is the worst. It’s where you’re stuck in limbo between reality and fantasy. Will test numbers show the tumor’s back or will it still be gone? Will the MRI come back clean or will there be a cloud we need to address? Without a doubt, waiting’s the worst.