Brain Tumour Awareness and Balance – Mine was Perfect

I was a figure skater with perfect balance.

However, one of the symptoms of a brain tumour is unsteadiness.


It’s Brain Tumour Awareness Week. Where we attempt to erase the stigma, educate the public, etc.

The Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada wants the public to be aware of the above eight signs.

But my symptoms?

I had a headache at school. It felt as though someone was stabbing my skull with a screwdriver. Everything turned orange. Heat rushed to my face and I had to rest my head on the table. The pain lasted for about 10 seconds,

That was the afternoon of September 9, 1991. In the early morning hours of September 10, 1991, I had a tonic-clonic seizure, leading to the diagnosis of my first tumour.

Several brain tumour survivors have said their symptoms were different than the BTFC’s list. Strange smells, a crooked smile, or chronic sinus issues. Or no symptoms and another specialist would discover the tumour.

Every June, Winnipeg, Manitoba holds the Brain Tumour Walk – formerly the Spring Sprint. When a survivor checks in, they’re asked your tumour grade, type, location, and sign. Not zodiac, I mean your symptoms.

Maybe you missed something. It’s not just the main symptoms. In less than 12 hours, I vague symptoms and my life changed overnight.

As a kid, I was often sick. Could this have been an underlying sign? Once my fever was so high, I watched the mercury shoot to the end of the thermometer.

When I was super sick. Not the best time for a photo op. Whenever I’d get sick, it’d be out of the blue.

My parents said when I first started to skate, I’d only push with one foot. Did I have my tumour from birth? Or was it those awful plastic moulded skates? What about speech impediments? Mine was nearly corrected after the first surgery. Seven years of speech therapy corrected by an eight-hour surgery.

The tumour was located on the speech and memory area of my brain. My two favourite parts!

But are these symptoms? Or are these growing pains and childhood ills?

What were the symptoms of your brain tumour?

Share in the comments section.

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