I am me.
Updated: May 21, 2019
One of the hardest things to do in life is to #accept who we are. I'm 32 years old and I'm just now learning to accept but also #appreciate who I am as a person and also a #writer. Why has it taken me so long? and where did my #story begin?
Some would say that my life is pretty much just as anyone else's. I have a #family, a #husband who loves me, #children, a house, a career... pretty much the great American dream. What more could a girl want? But when I look in the mirror and fix my hair or I go to bed at night and say my prayers, and sit in the quiet time of the day to think, my mind always rests on the one part of my life that has never been fixed: I am one of 1 million people. I'm not one-in-a-million; I'm one of a million. There's such a huge difference in the wording. Here's why...
When I was 14 years old, my life was going along just as every other regular teenage girl until the moment it wasn't. That seems so strange to say it that way, but literally, my life changed in the course of a second.
I was sitting in the backseat of my mom's Chevy Cavalier when I could no longer speak or communicate with my surroundings. Everything around me became a blur and a shooting pain began on the right side of my head in my temple moving to my left, causing my entire head to go numb and then tingly.
My mother tried talking to me, and while I could see and hear her, I couldn't respond. IT WAS THE MOST TERRIFYING MOMENT OF MY LIFE. I thought I was dying.
After those 30 seconds, my life would never be the same. Everything spiraled relentlessly out of control and I endured test after test, doctor appointment after doctor appointment, and nothing seemed to gain order ever again. I was told I had panic disorder and was given counseling, yet nothing worked. Somehow, I endured. I kept a journal of my experiences because my heart was hurting and I was so confused. My entire life, I had been taught by my church and everyone around me that "God is love," but I didn't feel loved. The teachers began treating me differently and others started to know that something was very wrong, but I still had no idea what was happening. I needed answers. #confusion
When I began having those events 15-20 times a day, I finally got the right test. A doctor at the Cleveland Clinic gave me an #MRI and found a spot in my right temporal lobe: brain tumor. It was the single-most worst news of my life. Then I received an #EEG and found out that the events I'd been having were seizures, not panic events, and to make everything worse, they were going to cut into my head and take it out. To a now 15 year old teenage girl, I could hardly bear it. The one thing I could think was "Are they going to shave my head?" The thought of walking around school and being #bullied for looking like Mr. Clean was worse than the thought of losing my life. #bullying
They told me I would most likely always have #seizures and that it would probably grow back. They also said that I would struggle with memory, verbal language, emotional cues, and many things they likely couldn't predict. After all, they were removing a golf ball size portion of my right temporal lobe.
They biopsied it afterward and told me I had an #oligodendroglioma and that it was pretty rare to be seen in girls my age (less than 4% of all primary #braintumors each year). Knowing this only made me more upset.
I went about a year without seizures and continued to question why it happened to me, especially as I struggled in school with exactly what they said: verbal comprehension (meaning I struggled keeping up with taking notes) and also memory (I had trouble with even little things). My short-term memory was trashed because they did surgery on my hippocampus. I became Dory! I forgot assignments, couldn't recall even small vocabulary words, and would stop speaking in the middle of a sentence because my brain would be "on pause". The doctors intervened and I was given the dreaded IEP. I was #humiliated and became even angrier at life, not understanding why this was happening to me. But I took it all out on my pen and notebook and #journaled every thought. Little did I know this was happening for a reason.
Now, almost eighteen years later, I look at the nine inch scar on the side of my head and I still feel #angry. But today when the seizures come, I'm almost #grateful because now I know they have a purpose. I endured this because I was meant to be a #writer. Recently, I was introduced to a condition that's called HYPERGRAPHIA, which is apparently a medical condition that causes the uncontrollable desire to #write. At my last visit to the #epilepsy doctor, he said he thinks that's what I'm struggling with when I stay up too late writing until my eyes bleed, and he told me to embrace my #incurablewritingdisease. Every time I have an MRI, the harmonic rhythm of its pulsating mechanism reminds me of exactly how fragile my life is. And each moment I lie in there the drumming of the magnets seem to pound, "Megan, you're not safe yet." To be honest, I know I'm not or else I wouldn't still be having MRIs every 18 months. While I'm taking 21 pills a day and still having seizures, I know that the seizures may never go away. But I'll always be a writer now. At least I have that.
All Rights Reserved.
This article may not be reused or reprinted without the author's written permission.