I was in 3rd grade when I found out I had a brain tumor on the right side of my head. At first the doctors didn't know what was going on, since my heart was racing a lot. They thought that my heart was the problem, but it wasn't, so I'm happy that they finally found out, and it's very good that the tumor was removed without any damage whatsoever. Luckily it wasn't a cancerous tumor. A real miracle. In fact, I was only in the hospital for a week.  Although it was pretty scary at the time, I enjoy writing about it four years later. I'm happy that you decided to visit my page to learn more about me.

I'm now a 15 year old girl...My birthday was in May, and I'm in the 10th grade.  Let's see. I have a little sister. I play on my school's basketball team. Volleyball, too, I'm a starter and the team's having great success! To top off the good news, I'm an honor student, and most importantly, I have many friends who care very much about me. They were there for me when I needed them, helping me through some rough parts.  None of my classmates make fun of me because of my brain tumor. Of course it's not at all noticeable any more. I think they find it neat and kind of cool to know someone like me.  Even though I'm in seventh grade now, I still get asked questions. And I love to explain what happened to me.

What I do not love is going to visit the doctor. You see, I usually have to miss school during those times, and school is the greatest. When we (my family and me) go, we have to get up really early (the hospital is in another state),and I always have to get some fluid injected during my MRI. I hate that too, even though I'm happy that  the doctors care about me. The doctor I go to is at the hospital where I had surgery, so sad memories of that time come rushing back. However, I really do like to think of my experiences with the brain tumor. It taught me a lot about life, and it makes me feel good inside.

If you ever have to deal with a problem like mine, don't let it get you down. I used to cry sometimes and it would usually help me to feel better afterwards, so my advice to you is to get the help you need, enjoy your life, and make a lot of friends. All three of those suggestions will help you to live a happy life.

Here are  my plans. I have high hopes of becoming a famous WNBA player. When I retire from that I hope to run a sports store. I'll keep you posted with my athletic progress if you'd like, and I'll certainly answer your questions if you'd like to learn more about me. 

On the 3rd of October I went to the hospital for some tests to make sure I was OK. Unfortunately, my EEG (electro-encephalogram) showed some irregular 'spikes' in my brain waves. The doctors think that I must be having some sort of seizures during the night time. That means that I have to have some more tests so they can pinpoint exactly what's going on. Otherwise, things went well. As you can imagine, this came to my family and me as a bit of a shocker, but I'm slowly getting use to it. 

  Here's an update (Spring, 2002)--some good news and some bad. Thankfully, there is nothing real serious going on, though I'm a bit concerned that my brain waves are weird when I sleep. For the longest time I just couldn't sleep, but now I'm taking Tegretol, and I sleep like a baby! I was seeing a psychologist, and really don't need her anymore, so that's good news, too.  I'll probably be off my anti-depressant this summer, too! Hey, thanks again for reading my story!  Megan

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Joan Fleitas, Ed.D., R.N.
Associate Professor of Nursing, Lehman College, CUNY
Bronx, New York 10468

Last updated: November 14, 2004