Okay maybe I am exaggerating, a lot of good things have happened to me in my 33 years of life but sometimes what seems like the worst thing ever, isn’t. Actually the best thing that ever happened to me was my gorgeous daughter.

Anyways, back to my story.

I am one of those people who believe everything happens for a reason but sometimes we can only see the reason once we reflect back on it. You can either look at life like everything is happening to you or everything is happening for you. As if 2020 wasn’t weird enough, nearly dying from a brain tumor I had no idea was there- somehow turned out alright.

When I look back, the timing was good as they had just allowed visitors again for hospital patients- win. There were only 7 cases of covid at the hospital at the time- win. My neurosurgeon and doctors were all in good health- triple win right? Luckily covid things were calm so hospital wise it was all good. My parents were looking after my daughter, so I could rest knowing she was in good hands.

Having a near death experience and brain surgery can change your life, perhaps it should, else what is the point? The previous year I had been to therapy and was getting professional help for anxiety and depression. Coupled with the brain tumor, it made me realize that I better start living my life.

I had been considering starting a blog for the longest time and guess what? I decided to use the time I had off from work while recovering to do just that. Yay, go me.

I learned that recovery is hard, confusing and personal. Recovery is like giving birth, you have to experience it to fully understand it, just one of those things. Recovery is complicated and is different for everyone.

I realised how many amazing people I have in my life that are so loving and caring and just brought me to tears how kind people are.

I learned that the people in your life matter more than the things you have as you can’t take anything with you when you die. I also realized how much of my life I wasn’t really showing up for. For whatever reason, I was not always truly present even though I thought I was. I blame the tumor, maybe it was squashing the part of my brain that allowed me to be fully present.

I also learned that life is short. Which should be obvious but what I mean is -what is the worst thing that could happen. If there is something you really want to do or say or need to do, then just do it. No, I don’t know the outcome but I promise in the end everything will work out. It is not always easy but what have you got to lose? Nothing really as you never really had anything anyways, if that makes sense.

As one of my good friends always tells me, there are no right or wrong decisions. There are just decisions and one decision will take you down a path and a different decision will take you down another path.

I also learned that my whole life I was always trying to do and say the right thing and please everyone around me but never doing things that made me happy. So I was finally able to see how miserable I was and that I didn’t really have time to stay miserable (remember life is short). So I decided to end a relationship that was making me more sad than happy.

So to conclude, having a brain tumor has made me brave. Hell, I survived two brain surgeries, I think I can handle it. That’s kind of my motto now, I’m sure people will get tired of me saying that one day.

I hope that you can be brave without having to go through brain surgery. Because as fun as that was, I don’t really wish it on anyone. And you know what, you are brave maybe you just haven’t realized it yet. But the more brave things you do, the braver you get, so start small and work your way up. Trust me. And to be honest having my family and support system was huge, it allowed me to be extra brave. If you do not have such a support system I realize things are a million times harder for you but I believe in you and I am rooting for you.

So don’t do anything stupid but don’t wait to start living your life (in whatever way that looks like for you, it is different for everyone). So while I wait for my hair to grow back (yes they shave your entire head to do brain surgery) and my body to get stronger, I wish you all the best of luck for the year and don’t forget you are way more capable than you give yourself credit for.

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