Mom was diagnosed with a brain tumor after a routine eye exam.
In the months leading up to Jane’s diagnosis, she had felt tired, more irritable than usual, and her usually optimistic personality fluctuated easily. Unbeknownst to Jane at the time, these are all classic symptoms of an adult brain tumor. However, she didn’t think much about it at the time and it never occurred to her that she might have the disease.
Jane had lost her grandfather to an aggressive and inoperable brain tumor as a child, but other than this experience when she was young, she had no knowledge of brain tumors or the symptoms they had. can cause.
The location of Jane’s tumor renders her inoperable due to the risk of causing significant and life-altering damage. So her only treatment option is to undergo gamma knife radiation therapy to shrink the tumor that will start in February. This will be alongside regular scans every six months to monitor her condition which Jane says she finds difficult, especially waiting for results. Jane is also currently taking cortisone to manage the swelling and inflammation, as well as regular checkups to monitor her optic nerve.
Jane is fortunate to have a supportive family around her, including her husband and their three children. She says talking about things and connecting with others has helped her come to terms with her diagnosis and the impact it will continue to have on her life.
Jane said: “My family have all been incredibly supportive. My husband just couldn’t believe what he was hearing when I told him. My brother was really shocked and my uncle, who I am very close to, was very upset. He couldn’t quite digest the information and needed time to get used to the idea. So he took a look online and then explained it all to me to reassure me afterwards.
“My mom was the last person I spoke to because I wanted to protect her from the harsh reality because I knew she would be upset too. I tried to be strong for her, but it was incredibly difficult to tell him the words, “I have a brain tumor.”
Jane also regularly turned to the website and online support groups offered by The Brain Tumor Charity as a valuable source of information and reassurance. She raises money for the charity by making regular donations and she also intends to take on a running challenge. Jane hopes the money she raises will help fund both awareness of the disease and the search for a cure.
She said: “I often feel like my hands are tied because no operation can remove my tumor. I can’t help it and I feel helpless. It’s scary, frustrating, and it also makes me angry sometimes. It’s hard not to think “why me” sometimes too. It is a major life change and a huge blow to the system.
“I feel so strong sometimes and I tell myself that it will be fine, that I can continue and that I can be strong for my family because I know that they need me by their side to support them too.
“I hope and pray that one day in the future a treatment option will be found so that my tumor can be removed because I know neurosurgeons are lifesavers. Walking around with a brain tumor in my head is a crazy, colossal sensation, but I just have to accept it.
“Laughing with my friends and family and enjoying therapeutic activities such as singing or sewing in cross stitch really help me relieve the pain. It’s easier said than done, but talking also helps and releases each emotion as it goes. Be brave and you will go through the journey.