Elephants And Tea - March 2021 - 6

Reflection

LETTER TO MY YOUNGER SELF

How That C Word
Rocked My World
BY A L I QU I L IC I C O OPE R

Dear The Newly Diagnosed Young Adult,
It's been just over three months to the day since I found out that I had a golf
ball sized brain tumor in my right frontal lobe. Just about a month after that I
found out that it was a grade 3 anaplastic astrocytoma, a very aggressive form
of brain cancer. Last summer I was a normal, fun loving, mostly care-free
24 year old. I was working two jobs, trying to finish school and coaching the
beautiful game of basketball.

6

ELEPHANTSANDTEA.COM
MARCH 2021

Editor's Note:
Ali wrote this
at the end
of 2015 right
after she was
diagnosed
with brain
cancer.

Then the fall of 2015 came and my world
will officially never be the same. My life
and my body are no longer my own. My
days that used to be filled with class, work
and exercise are now monopolized by pills,
doctor's appointments and needle pricks.
My body doesn't feel like mine at all. I feel
like I'm renting someone else's for the time
being. And on top of that, I am literally terrified for my life. I'm constantly thinking
about the things I may never get to do that
I never questioned before. Things like, get
married, have babies, finally become an
elementar y school teacher, a successful
basketball coach, or sit on a front porch
when I'm 85 with my twin sister making
fun of our husbands who are hopefully in
worse shape than we are - come on, every
woman hopes for that! I've even been sad
about missing things that no normal person would be sad about like going through
menopause or have a serious, world shattering, heartbreak by loving a boy way more
than I should - every girl has at least one
or two of those right? But no, I may never
get those experiences like every other girl
my age. I feel a complete disconnect and
like such an outcast to every person in my
life who I once felt close to, not to mention
the people I wasn't close to.
When something like this happens to
you, you get the widest variety of responses.
Some people are genuinely mad for you.
Some are sad for you. Some are over the top
sad for you. Like way more sad than you'd
even expect your own grandmother to be.
Some try to make jokes. Some are literally
speechless. I've learned that everyone responds and everyone grieves differently.
And guess what! THAT'S OKAY! As long


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Elephants And Tea - March 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Elephants And Tea - March 2021

Contents
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