Editor’s Note:
This post was originally shared in the July 2018 Amy’s Army newsletter and is being re-shared with permission. Amy is currently pursuing treatment options for her tumor and is in good spirits about her future.

Have you ever driven in rain so hard you can’t see where you are going?  It happened to me recently, and then, to top it off, my phone rang.  You will be happy to hear I pulled off the road.

It was my doctor on the phone.  It’s never a good sign when a doctor calls you at 6:30 on a rainy evening.  “Your MRI results are in, and you should come see me so we can talk.  You have a tumor in your skull, called ‘glomus jugulare.’” He had sent me to get the MRI because of an annoying sound in my ear and some vertigo.  Symptoms so small I felt silly mentioning them to my GP, but she sent me to the ENT anyway, and he, rather apologetically, said we had to get an MRI, though, he said “there is far less than 1% chance of it showing anything.”

But it showed a tumor!  Because of my history of breast cancer, I was alarmed.  But he went on to say, “this tumor is not cancerous, but it is large so we need to talk about how to get it out.  Surgery or radiation, or both, but we can talk when you come to my office.”  With the news, time slowed down.  The rain on my windshield slowed down.  But I realized my cheeks were wet.  Rain….

I prefer sunshine, but I know that without rain we would not have flowers, and without bumps in the road of life we would not realize that we live in a wonderful world.  My breast cancer gave me a voice, realized in our grassroots non-profit, Amy’s Army of Cancer Warriors.   I don’t know why I have this new tumor, but I know there is a reason.  Flowers will come from this rain.

This tumor is not cancer: it will not take my life. But I am learning that the treatment for this tumor will be vastly more complicated, and riskier, than the lumpectomy surgery and radiation I received as a breast cancer patient.  I am embarking on a journey of many tests, consultations, procedures, dealing with insurance.  Lots of rain in the forecast.