Sunday 11-27-16 My friend took me to a christmas performance downtown and We decided to have some lunch before heading home. We tossed around a few places and she suggested Sauce. I immediately thought of the location that used to be my office and was now converted to the restaurant. There is a BOFA branch and next to it was their sales office it was bought and made into a restaurant SAUCE. ( weird but true) I assumed it was the same location but asked her where I should go. In deed it was the same location Camelback and Central. I shared with her how the building was where I used to work. I haven’t been in there for years but it was where I GOT THE CALL. For those that don’t know I learned of my brain tumor over the phone while sitting at my desk in AUGUST of 1998. The doctor who was given the task of following up to an MRI I had that morning decided to tell me on the phone instead of asking me to come in. It’s all good because his horrible bedside manor has made for a good story and how a person shouldn’t be. We tossed around a few other ideas but I knew I was ready to face “THE BUILDING”. I must admit I have driven by even stopped and taken a picture over the years. Yep even shed a tear. My life is good but it drastically changed that day. Don’t get me wrong I know my outcome to brain surgeries could have been horrible and I thank God for the blessings but it was a loss. My life with my kids changed, my finances changed, so much changes when your diagnosed. Hearing the words you have a brain tumor was the start to what would change my life forever and now 18 years later “LOOK AT ME NOW”. So we arrive. My friend will read this and will learn for the first time how truly emotional dinner was the other day. It was bitter sweet walking in that building. Silly me years ago I truly thought brain tumor? Let’s get this thing out so I can get back to work. WOW never did I dream I would be told I had brain cancer. I was not able to return having a total of 5 surgeries as many of you know and it returning near my brain stem causing it to no longer be operable leaving me with chemo and radiation as my only form of treatment. I only returned to that building to pick up my belongings and maybe once or twice that first year but never the same. I had to medically retire and it crushed me. I truly loved what I did. I was good at it to. The building is connected to a regular branch and over the years sold to a real estate company and now a restaurant . Funny thing actually going in was surreal. Memories flooded my mind. It was great though it was not so busy so I was able share with my friend my stories. I of course at this point engaged the staff in my story and where things were located and where I actually sat. Another person in the office was diagnosed with a brain tumor shortly after me and two others died from a form of cancer in the years to come so sorta weird remembering the days before illness. Processing the wheres and whats and memories I choose to remember the ones that made me smile. Those that read this and worked with me will remember the time uncle Bob’s cap came off his tooth and he sounded live ALVIN of f the chipmunks All I want for CHRITHMUS is my two front Teeth. LOL Anyhow here is what I call my IFONLYFORONE. There was a Sauce employee that came up to me after being moved by hearing my story/ TESTIMONY and asked if she could pray with me. I said of course. She was a young girl very sweet . I asked where she attended church. She explained she just became a Christian and just started attending a church not to far down the street. She shared with me the name Oh my goodness it was the very location we attended back when I was diagnosed. It was the church I attended as a little girl with my grandma. It is a different Church Name now but same building. I shared with her how it was my church family that surrounded me with love and prayers and how I was able to get through like I did. As I finished my meal I reflected on how my work family still remains a big part of my journey. Through the years they supported me. Some with lot’s of encouragement at just the right times. Funny thing several of my BIGGEST supporters for the foundation are friends I worked with in that very building. LOOKING BACK was a good day. Things have changed and years ago I felt I lost when I left but I really took what I gained and grew. Sometimes we have to see where we were. Really visualize- SEE the place, feel the emotion to know it’s ok and I did the best I could with something that could have been so horrible. You don’t have to be physically damaged to be trapped. Emotional trapping is just as harmful. I have come along way. Dear brain buddies I KNOW! braintumorsstink but it was the journey that taught me its about supportnotstatistics! Looking back gave me a better view for my future. It was that spot in this building that allowed me to be what I am in the brain tumor world today. Looking back never felt so good.