Tag Archive: hospital

I was at my parents’ house celebrating Memorial Day. I was playing with my son, niece and nephew, teaching them how to walk on their hands. I felt wonderful. I drove home that night with my husband and son. At approximately 1:00 am I had a Grande Mal seizure. I am told that my body was jerking, I was jumping off the bed and I wet myself. Luckily my husband awakened to see what was wrong. He called 911 and changed my clothes. I was transported by ambulance to the hospital. I had another Grande Mal seizure on the way and one more once we got there. They asked my husband if I had taken any drugs like ecstasy. He told them I didn’t take drugs. They did a CT scan which showed I had a brain tumor. My husband told me and I began to cry. Now you have to realize I have no recollection of this night. I was taken then to Carolina Medical Center in Charlotte, North Carolina. My son’s neurosurgeon, Dr. Hefner, met us at the hospital. They did an MRI that confirmed I had a brain tumor. He said he believed it to be an Oligodendroglioma. He said that they would have to operate on my brain to remove it.

My mother was very upset . I am told that every family member was there, but I don’t remember seeing any of them. I do remember my boss, Nancy Schrum, coming to visit me before the surgery, but that is the only person I truly remember. Why I only remember her is a mystery to me.. I had the brain surgery on June 1, 2001. I don’t remember it. My husband tells me I slept allot. I didn’t even know why I was in the hospital. I asked him if a helicopter fell on me! I had a dream that a helicopter fell on me. I never expected I had brain surgery or a brain tumor. I vaguely recall walking around the hospital. My husband says one night I got up to use the bathroom without assistance and fell and hit my head. I have no recollection of that either.

I was released on June 5, 2001. I had to be watched and taken care of for two weeks, doctor’s orders. Well, I am not one for having other people take care of me much less do my housework or take care of my son, especially when I am home. It was very hard for me to let other people do these things for me. I do have to admit that I got tired easily and took naps. Dana, my husband’s sister came for a few days, then my mom and then my husband’s mom. I was so glad when the two weeks were over. Not that I minded the company, that was great. But when they lifted a finger to clean, I felt guilty. Why should I have felt guilty? I shouldn’t have but I did.

I was on two anticonvulsants, Dilantin and Deprokote and steroids for swelling after surgery. On June 14 I had to go back to Dr. Hefner to have the staples removed. And, by the way, I couldn’t get the staples wet so I couldn’t wash my hair without help. Yet another thing that made me feel helpless. Anyway, I went to get my staples out and show him the rash on my face. He had my staples removed and then told me that I was having a reaction from the Dilantin.



I’ve never feared the judgement of my peers. Have always been my own person–shy, quiet, but comfortable in my own skin.
My parents’ opinion was the only one that mattered so I made straight A’s in school and was careful not to be caught doing something I shouldn’t.

When a toddler I witnessed my mother using my dad’s razor strap on my older sister’s bottom. Fear of corporal punishment made me a model of good behavior. Growng up and witnessing the death of relatives and friends made me fear the unknown.

Today I fear nothing. I watched my thirty-nine year old baby girl, crippled with a brain tumor, suffering pain I couldn’t imagine, but with a brave smile for all who visited her in her last days. Finally, I witnessed her last breaths as I lay beside her in her hospital bed.

What’s left to fear?

Missing You

I miss your face, your voice, your laughter. I miss the me in you. Every night when bedtime arrives, I put my knee pillow between my legs, get into a fetal position, give old Button ear cuddles and tummy pats, then perform my memory ritual.

I crawl into your hospital bed, put my cheek to yours, comb your hair with my fingers and tell you: you are my precious baby girl and I love you with all my heart and soul. This is the scenario when I held you the day before you died.

I miss your voice, your laughter, your wonderful sense of humor. I miss your face. I’d do anything, absolutely anything, if I could be with you again. Oh, Mimi.