According to dicitonary.com, the word journey means, “traveling from one place to another, usually taking a rather long time; trip”. I truly do believe that there is another side to this word, a more personal side and that’s what I will be talking about today.
Throughout my 21 years of life, I have faced many hard challenging obstacles but I am a fighter and never give up. Even when there have been times where I just wanted to throw the towel in. Four years ago is when I faced another challenging obstacle that’s because I was diagnosed with an extremely rare genetic brain tumor known as dysplastic gangliocytoma of the cerebellum or also known as Lhermitte–Duclos disease. Hearing this diagnosis brought great sadness, anger, and loss to my mother and I. I went back to college to finish out my junior year than the senior year wasn’t too far behind.
Even though I worked extremely hard to make sure I graduated college in four-year, my brain tumor, future and health was still on my mind. During my senior year of college, I saw so many of my friends and other students knew where they were going and what they will be doing after school and then there was me. I was terrified about graduating from college because I was thinking more of the unknown. I didn’t have a job, I didn’t know if my tumor grew or I would develop even more health problems. When people would ask me, “what do you want to do” my response would be “I don’t know”. About two months after college, I ended up landing a seasonal full-time position where my dad was working at that time. I worked in the photography department with him at a small personalization company and stayed there until Christmas eve. During this time we were also trying to find a doctor/team that knows my rare brain tumor or even has the drive to learn more.We finally got into seeing a team at the University of Chicago and this is where we started our journey to having brain surgery to remove the tumor from my cerebellum on February 23, 2015. Surgery went fantastic and 90% of the tumor was removed but I was only home for about a week until I had to go into the emergency room because I was experiencing a slight fever and a headache/pressure. During the longtime emergency room visit, we ended up finding out that I had a bacterial infection. This would be the first obstacle and much more to come, a total of four and five hospital stays later. I had to even go back into another surgery on April 15, 2015, to fix a CSF leak.
Through this entire experience, I was learning more about myself. I’m writing this post a year out and six months from my surgery. I wanted to share this view and passion of mine because seeing my life as a journey has helped me getting through some incredibly hard times. My Journey_My Life has given me power, strength, and a push to keep inspiring others. I will never let my brain tumor or anything medical complication stop me from living.