Three Centimeters

Three Centimeters

How three centimeters almost took away the strongest woman I've ever known.

Sydney Spurgeon

An estimated 213 people will be diagnosed with a brain tumor in the next 24 hours alone. In 2010, my mother was one of the 78,000 diagnosed annually. Three centimeters almost took my mother away. Three. Smaller than the diameter of a golf ball. Smaller than the human eye. The diameter of the hole in the photo above on your laptop screen. That's what almost took the woman who gave me everything in life away from me.

She woke up that crisp January morning and went through her daily routine, as if nothing was wrong. And to the best of her knowledge, nothing could possibly be wrong. But something was going horribly awry. The sun was shining and she hopped on the back of her horse as she had done a thousand times before. But this day was different. An hour into her lesson, she was bucked into the air by her thousand pound pet and suffered from a major concussion. A blessing in disguise. The hospital was able to get her into an MRI machine immediately and that's when her life took a complete turn. She walked out of the doctors office now fully aware of the mass beneath her skull. It had begun wrapping around a vital nerve in the brain and would have killed her in a matter of months.

That night, she and my father sat my brother and I down. Honestly, I thought they were going to tell me they were pregnant. Instead, they explained in lame terms what was happening inside my mother's brain. I was shocked. Hearing something like that is practically impossible to take lightly. But she stayed strong. She smiled and said everything was going to be fine. She seemed so sure about it too. And I wondered how that could be. She had a mass in her brain. She had to have brain surgery. How can one just smile about all of that? But she did, for the sake of her children.

Days later, she was rushed into surgery and had the complicated four hour procedure done at the UCSF Medical Center and was taken home the next day. I was only 12, and it was difficult for me to see the woman who had raised me in such a crippling form. Suddenly, the strongest woman I had ever met was now struggling to comprehend how to use the toilet.

Over the next few months, my mother was schooled on how to brush her teeth, how to dress herself, and how to walk. I spoon fed her every night at dinner time and told her about my day when all she could do was nod back at me because talking was too much. I couldn't comprehend that three centimeters had done this to my mother. I cried every night, praying to something in the sky, that she would be okay again. She was an infant all over again.

The doctors told her she would be in bed for six months. She was walking in three weeks. The doctors told her she would not be able to drive for a year. She was driving in two months. She defied all odds.

And I couldn't be prouder to call her my mom. I am 50 percent of this incredible woman and if I become half the human she is, I'll be pretty damn awesome.

Before I conclude, I want you all to do one simple thing. Hug your mothers. Or if you can't, call her. Tell her you love her. I do every day, regardless of the argument we might have had just a few short hours ago. Because you never know when she will be taken from you. Something as small as three centimeters can take the woman who gave you everything away. And the scariest part is, you never know when that train’s coming. Just. Like. That.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

Founders Of Color Q&A: Yarlap's MaryEllen Reider On Destigmatizing Women's Health

The father-daughter duo co-founded the brand and has since generated a passionate, dedicated community of women.

MaryEllen Reider

I was lucky enough to meet MaryEllen Reider over a decade ago as a fellow freshman in college. Since then, I had the luxury of being able to witness her evolution from the faithful companion I went to my first job fair with to the woman who is now a pioneer in destigmatizing the portrayal of women's reproductive health.

Keep Reading... Show less

My favorite Editor was feeling under the weather yesterday. All I wanted was to make her a vegan iced matcha latte. With distance forbidding it, I instead decided to write up this quick, easy recipe. I made it to be vegan and organic for optimal health benefits.

Matcha green tea is made from grounded green tea leaf and it comes with the most antioxidant boost ever.

Keep Reading... Show less

This coffee brand is USDA organic. Newman's Own Keurig coffee flavors are all organic. They have French Roast, Decaf, and a Special Blend. I'm in a committed relationship with the French Roast flavor. The smell alone from dispensing 1 cup of coffee sets a whole cafe jazz vibe.

I'm already relaxed when I smell the coffee all ready for dressing. The way I make my coffee is simple and sweet, literally. I add a spoon of organic brown sugar and a splash of organic almond vanilla milk. This cup of coffee has changed my life forever. I have never been so productive in my life and I truly believe it's because the coffee is organic.

Keep Reading... Show less

These organic, cruelty-free skincare products are great for hot, sweaty summers. I use them every day, so you will find my honest opinion about them all. I highly recommend using organic products because they are least likely to be harmful to your body.

This may seem like an extra step when it comes to your beauty routine, but it's really easy. These 5 products could be the start of your next beauty venture.

Keep Reading... Show less

These 5 Black Handbag Designers Should Be On Every Accessory Lover's Radar

With the push to support more Black-owned businesses, we've put together a list of Black owned handbag designers.

Ever since the current upheaval of societal silence happening in the country caused by the #BlackLivesMatter movement, there has been a bigger push for people to support Black-owned businesses.

Granted, there are a lot fo Black-owned businesses to support, it just takes time to find them. With that being said, fashion is a sector, just like any sector really, in a culture that still has people of color calling out for more diversity.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

Feel A Lil' Better: Because Therapy Dogs Aren't Just Cute, They're Working

Your weekly wellness boost from Odyssey.

No matter how good (or bad) you'd describe your health, one thing is for sure: a little boost is ALWAYS a good idea. Whether that's reading a new, motivating book, or listening to a song that speaks to your soul, there are plenty of resources to help your health thrive on any given day.

There are many different ways people overcome obstacles in their lives. Thankfully, the stigma surrounding therapy is slowly (but surely) slipping away and we're opening up about our problems and needs. For some, a good workout is just as relaxing. Others are learning how meditation can be a helpful tool in their mental health journey.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments