My Nonprofit Reviews
Review for National Brain Tumor Society, Newton, MA, USA
How a Brain Tumor Changed My Life
In 2010 my world was turned upside down when I was diagnosed with a nearly fist sized meningioma brain tumor. For months, I experienced strange aversions to smells, and had bizarre out of body sensations. My gut was screaming at me 'you have a brain tumor'. Unfortunately, an MRI would ultimately prove my suspicions were right. I was referred to Dr. William Curry, a brilliant neurosurgeon at Massachusetts General Hospital. He removed the entire tumor, and I made a full recovery. I am tumor free today, but continue to be monitored in case of a recurrence.
Originally, I kept my diagnosis, surgery, and recovery mostly private, as I could never imagine going public with my experience. But along the road to recovery, I met two friends that were also battling brain tumors. I now had an opportunity to share what I had learned, felt, and the chance to help other patients feel like they were not alone. Having that feeling that others will never understand what you're going through, and the fear that you'll never feel like yourself again is terrifying. I hoped I could be a source of strength for others that just started their brain tumor journey. Inspired by the National Brain Tumor Society in 2013, my new friends and I started a fundraising team, Three Fine Limes, to raise money for brain tumor research.
Sadly, our friend, Steven Aitken, lost his battle with brain cancer in 2014. In honor of Steve, Three Fine Limes participated in the Boston Brain Tumor Walk, and this year I have taken our team on the road to the Washington DC Race for Hope. I am heading to Phoenix in a few weeks, to participate in their 5K. Three Fine Limes are taking on brain tumors in three cities for 2015!
Three Fine Limes also participated in Head to the Hill, the National Brain Tumor Society's lobby day. Advocates from 38 states attended meetings with members of Congress, to discuss needs of the brain tumor community. At the recent inaugural Grey Gala, the NBTS Interim CEO, David Arons said ' We're a society because that's a group that fights for each other'. I cannot think of a more inspiring group of people to be fighting alongside.
Because of my personal experience, and the other amazing brain tumor survivors I have met along the way, and for the brain tumor patients who fought courageously, but did not win their battle, I donate, participate in events, volunteer, and advocate for the National Brain Tumor Society ( http://braintumor.org ) to ensure that one day a cure for this terrible disease will be found.