Scary Brain Tumours

An amazing watercolour painting by artist Maja Wronska.

If life did not already have enough things to be worried or scared or feared about, let’s add one more thing to the pot! Brain Tumours. Over the past few months I have come across 3 people who have had brain tumours, all alive today, but one who is imminently facing his death.

I met a man briefly at a party I went to recently. He used to be, only a few months ago, a well respected Doctor, a jovial happy outspoken man, healthy and smart, and at the top of his league. A Boss, commanding staff and saving lives as a good samaritan. Now he sat with a puffy radiation induced face, less energetic, slender in build, and only a tiny verbal version of the man he used to be. This was my first encounter with him, so comparisons are from others perspective; but what blew me away was this guy was the same age as me. He is single, no children, and after living so many years happily solo, he is now bunking up with his sister, no doubt for physical and emotional support.

His situation is terminal, there is no corrective treatment, his tumour is inoperable. What devastating circumstances for such a young man. What is also unbelievable is that he diagnosed his own condition. He noticed he wasn’t functioning very well and other signs like losing his dexterity, not being able to write and generally feeling unwell, made him check himself in for a CT Scan. Little did he realise the result would find a massive inoperable brain tumour gorging over half of his brain mass. This must have been a huge, gut wrenching shock.

My heart went out to him and I just wanted to give him a big hug. I didn’t get a chance to talk to him one on one, or give him that hug, as much as I wanted to. I am very intrigued by death, I have a morbid fascination with it. I like to speak to people who are facing their imminent end and wonder how does it feel? What is it like? Are you scared?

This picture demonstrates the differing sides to our brains, from creative to analytical. Cue song… Insane in the membrane! 

When I started researching for causes of brain tumours I came up fairly empty handed. There really is little evidence to support rumours of the causes of brain tumours. Power lines, hair dye and mobile phones were all debunked as possible causes. Smoking apparently did increase your risk for some types of tumours, but drinking did not according to this UK Website.

It seems perplexing we can not identify the causes of brain tumours, a little common sense may be more useful here. Constant beams of radiation from our phones surely may cause long term harm? I doubt the phone companies would want us to know the truth on that one.

We all have a time bomb ticking on our lives, and seeing others around us draw the despicable short straw on life, should hopefully spur us on to make the very most of our lives. What even is this life? It seems so unfair for so many people, for no reason, their lives are cut short and they are denied the joys many of us take for granted. The embrace of a loving partner, the overzealous joy of our own offspring, a table full of family and scrumptious food, these are all expected givens in our lives. But I can promise you, they are rare circumstances and you are not always fortunate to experience such ordinary daily bliss. Not everyone gets to enjoy all this goodness.

Good brain health is really important. Look after your brain! 

Love and happiness are the ultimate in life experience I believe. These are the two main things we humans strive for. Adding purpose and passion and human connection, life can become a joyful experience. I wish you all the very best in pursuing a fantastic life. With all its twists and turns the highway of life can be very bumpy, full of pot holes and hazards. But hopefully you also see the flowers, and the views and the beauty around you too.

I want to briefly make mention of the other 2 people I know who have successfully removed their brain tumours. Strangely they are living very similar lives. Both of them have sold up all their possession and both of them are nomadic travellers, loving every minute of their freedom, daily exciting lives and fresh perspectives. I think having a near death experience would make you re-evaluate your life, and make you prioritise your values. Both women are inspiring to me, for being courageous, for going against the norm in life, and for carving their own paths. They have also shaken off the need for material gain and seek pleasure more from experience, very wise women. Both of them sold or gave away all of their possessions and live transient happy free lives. How I envy their freedom!

If death can teach us anything, it is to not take our loved ones for granted, to make the very most of our good fortune, and really prioritise awesome experiences over day to day mediocrity or superfluous material gain. Well that’s my perspective, the good thing about life is you can live it anyway you choose!

Wishing you good health, happiness and gratitude.

Anita xx



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