Lasha: "What was I doing... why am I here?"
Brain: "You were planning to write a blog about something."
Lasha: "Nope, that wasn't it. I can't remember... it couldn't have been that important."
Brain: "Wasn't there something you wanted to share with everyone, Lasha?"
Lasha: "No, I don't feel like sharing anything - with anyone! Leave me alone!"
Brain: "Why are you bring so grumpy?"
Lasha: "I'M NOT GRUMPY!"
Brain: "Yes, you proved you're not grumpy by yelling at me right now..."
Lasha: "I'm busy - go away! I have some... umm... unicorns that need to be drawn. Yes, unicorns! And, possibly some pretty flowers and hearts to be drawn around them..."
Brain: "Stay on target Lasha! You have a blog you want to write."
Lasha: "... and sharp knives piercing their hearts!"
Brain: "Come on Lasha, let's talk, how are you doing?"
Lasha: "What do you mean?"
Brain: "How have you been feeling since you got your last MRI?"
Lasha: "I'm good. It was all good news... why are you hassling me about this?"
Brain: "Because you seem off. Do you want to talk about it?"
Lasha: "NO! Leave me alone!"
Brain: "Let's talk, what did the MRI say?"
Lasha: "It said my 2nd tumor was stable."
Brain: "That's good news! What do they plan to do about it?"
Lasha: "They're monitoring it. I have a new neurologist - he seems nice enough."
Brain: "That's great, what did he say?"
Lasha: "What did who say?"
Brain: "Your new neurologist, what he said about your MRI results?"
Lasha: "No, I don't feel like talking about that."
Brain: "We were just talking about it, did you forget?"
Lasha: "I don't know... why are you bugging me?"
Brain: "I'm not bugging you, I'm here visiting with you, we are talking like friends do, do you remember friends Lasha?"
Lasha: "You're not my friend! You just want me to open up and share with you so you can judge me!"
Brain: "I want to judge you? No! I'm here to help you. I love you."
Lasha: "Liar! You don't care about me!"
- SLAP! -
- STOP IT! -
Brain: "Stop jumping to the worst conclusions and assuming malintent. I'm here to love on you - and besides, you look really silly slapping yourself right now!"
Lasha: "You're my worse enemy... shut up and leave me alone."
Brain: "Haha - good luck with that. I'm not going anywhere. I know how you feel, we have been through a lot together, and I know how hard it is for you to put your trust in people."
Lasha: "It's just... I have heard stable before and that put us in a wheelchair with all the medical professionals in Canada telling us that it was normal.
Brain: "Well, stable sounds good this time around. Maybe it means, you can find some relief knowing there isn't an immediate brain surgery ahead."
Lasha: "Yes, that is a BIG relief! On one hand, I am relieved to hear monitoring and no future surgeries required at the moment; but, on the other hand, I know I have a 2nd brain tumor... and I can't help but feel this horrible gut wrenching feeling when I hear the word "stable"."
Brain: "I know, I'm sorry Lasha. What keeps you going through all of these feelings?"
Lasha: "What keeps me going? Am I going? Haha!"
Brain: "You're going - smiling - we always see you smiling."
Lasha: "Don't let this smile deceive you. I'm in a lot of pain - I feel like a complete..."
- PAUSE -
Brain: "Lasha, you okay?"
Brain: "You blanked out there, are you feeling okay?"
Lasha: "I'm fine... I have some unicorns that need some loving!"
Brain: "Wait a moment, you were writing a blog with me and we were talking about what keeps you going knowing you have a 2nd brain tumor."
Lasha: "Really? I don't feel like talking about that."
Brain: "Lasha, this isn't about you, or what you do or don't feel like talking about, this it is about them!"
Lasha: "Mumble... grumble... mumble..."
Brain: "Come on' Mrs. Grumps a lot - what's going on with you?"
Lasha: "I don't know"
Brain: "You don't know?"
Lasha: "Honestly, I couldn't tell you."
Brain: "Okay then, let's stay on target, what keeps you going through this 2nd brain tumor battle?"
Lasha: "My perspective... I guess."
Brain: "What do you mean?"
Lasha: "I feel like I have taken the backseat, I have no control over whether or not this tumor exists; but, I do have control over how I live with it in my existence."
I used to barter and plead for relief from the pain and suffering. I would plead to Doctors - and God - to take these brain tumors away and make me feel "normal" again.
This word "stable" makes me feel like I am drowning inside, with my mouth open wide, and I don't know why...
I feel like I could open up, and share my pain (like a broken grave), but after all I've given out, what I wouldn't give for a moment of peace and comfort to remain within me.
Brain: "Peace... comfort... these are beautiful words. You sharing your story helps bring peace and comfort to those who are also struggling. Don't loose sight of the endgame, Lasha."
Lasha: "What is the endgame here, Brain? What more do you want from me?"
Brain: "What I have always wanted from you - to be of service."
Lasha: "To be of service, in my condition, you have to be kidding! I'm one brain tumor short of being Cousin Eddie."
Brain: "If we have something we are doing, that helps others, that is of service, it gives us light in our lives and a reason to be here. That is the secret gift! That is the secret, Lasha!"
Welcome to my panic room (the battle of my emotional and logical sides of Brain):
1) Is this 2nd brain tumor going to rule my life?
Yes and no, these brain tumors have been soul frightening - face whitening - they have given me fear which I cannot reverse.
I struggle to keep my mind positive, and focused on happiness, but I can't lie. There are many days ruled by the fear of the unknown.
2) Does this 2nd brain tumor cause my anxiety, fear, depression, PTSD, and chronic pain to escalate?
Yes, these monsters are so much bigger than I can control now... I feel broken.
But, if in my brokenness, if in my darkest fears, I can provide even a ray of light to someone else struggling, then I have been gifted with a beautiful purpose. A beautiful reason to be alive today.
3) What do I do to make my monsters go away?
My monsters are never away... I have only learned (and still learning) that when I see my monsters (pain/problems/fear) to try to stand there as brave as I can and chase them all away with happiness.
Happiness is my lighthouse, happiness makes it okay, and happiness is the light that shines upon my monsters; this light allows me to study them and learn what makes them so strong. I will never get rid of my monsters for they are apart of me but I can learn acceptance and make peace. Like the saying goes, "knowledge is power".
Happiness has a frequency - one not matched by grief, anger, pain, or suffering. This happiness frequency is highly contagious and moves un-moveable mountains in people's hearts and souls. Happiness will overtake any other feeling frequency if you open your mind and body to it.
I find my happiness frequency through knowing where my monsters are, knowing where my pathways are blocked, and then I tap into beautiful music - music that moves me! I close my eyes and I get lost in my art. I dream of future and past projects. I think about the people who are in my life, who are yet to come, or have already been.
I draw my frequency from making other's happy, by bringing love and light to them, which in turn makes me happy.
Before I know it, I am lost in my artwork (literally singing and dancing - if not, only in my mind).
Brain: "Anything else you want to share?"
Lasha: "No Brain... I'm fried... Unicorns here I come!"
The PGCT & Mental Health Awareness Campaign