Michael's Story

The following is just one of many stories of those affected by brain cancer and is why we need to find a cure for brain cancer.  Join our fight by registering, donating or sponsoring the 2016 Brain Tumor Run for Research 5k.  All proceeds benefit the 501(c)(3) nonprofit, Accelerate Brain Cancer Cure (www.abc2.org). 

Camp? No thanks, I’m 37.

My name is Michael and I am 37 years old. I am a husband, a father, a brother, a son. Two years ago an ER doctor found a highly malignant tumor in my noggin that nearly took my life and most certainly would have within a few months had it not been removed. It made me angry! That anger conjured a veracious fight to live and hold onto everything that was dear to my life. I didn’t want to talk to anyone other than my wife, my daughter, and the medical personnel that were getting this damn thing out of my head.

I was approached many times about support groups and resources to discuss my feelings. I had no interest in these things, but I attended one support group because my wife asked it of me. It was a disaster! I sat there and listened to a girl monopolize the group while discussing the intuitive nature of her cat and how it helps her cope with cancer. I enjoyed the free pizza and never went back.

A friend told me about a camp for young adult cancer survivors. It involved going to Hawaii and surfing for a week. The surfing sounded great, but I’m a grown man and I had no interest in going to camp, singing Kumbaya, and doing trust falls. I had no interest in sharing my feelings with complete strangers, nor did I want to hear about someone else’s cat. These were the thoughts that came to mind about camp.

With all that had happened to me, I figured I was stuck in a rut and I had nothing to lose by applying for camp. I had nothing else going on and if something better came along I would just ditch the camp idea. Well it turns out that happened. My sister invited me to an amazing music festival that same week and I thought there was no way I was going to miss that to go talk about my feelings. No way!

Maybe it was guilt. Maybe it was intuition. But ultimately I chose to attend the camp. That decision turned out to be a game changer in my life. There were no trust falls or corny ice breakers. There were just real people with real problems and we were all together on a beautiful tropical island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. I wasn’t forced to talk about anything. Conversation just came natural. These people had interesting lives outside of having a cancer diagnosis. It was a group of fun people from many different areas and many different walks of life and everyone had something interesting to talk about. Being physically active under the tropical sun was pretty amazing as well.

I went to this camp and met a bunch of complete strangers. Six days later I boarded a jet for home having met lifelong friends. I left with confidence and I had shared my story without being cheesy. I felt supported, which is something I didn’t even know I needed. I went home understanding that life was in fact about a bunch of opportunities and not just a bunch of obstacles.

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Brain Tumor Stories

Below are some of the stories from those that have been affected by brain tumors.

Michael's Story
Valerie's Story
Briana's Story
Jean's Story

© Brain Tumor Run for Research 5k
Brain Tumor Run for Research 5k
May 6th, 2017 in Downtown Pensacola, Florida

Contact info@braintumorrun.com or
Greg at 850-450-0857 for more information!