Graham DeZarn

First post: Jun 21, 2021 Latest post: Jul 2, 2021
On Saturday, the 1st of May 2021, I (Graham) was at the workshop cutting on the table-saw when I had a seizure — not a convulsive seizure, but still a seizure, which... just doesn't sit well with table-saw work (or anything else, really.) My brain kinda ran off and started thinking all sorts of rapid-fire thoughts, and I just felt confused at first. I sat for a minute, went to the bathroom — where I noticed I could only see half my face — sat some more, realized I couldn't read or remember the name of the friend who was working on the other side of the shop. 

I was scared, so I didn't say anything. I cleaned up my work mess, and left. On the way home, I remembered a family friend who had had a stroke, and decided I should probably go to the hospital. I got home, ate something, and called Cheri who immediately called an ambulance. 

I had a CT scan at the ER, and can still remember the voice of the neurologist as she said, "There is no easy way to say this, but there is something in your brain." She recommended that I stay at the hospital until I could have an MRI, so I was admitted to a Neuro ward and after the MRI on Monday, they showed Cheri and I an imagine of a brain tumor just above and behind my left ear. 

That was Monday, the 3rd, and by Friday morning, I was in surgery. Everything went very well, (as far as I know!), and the tumor mass was completely removed. I was not required to do "awake surgery", but they did call Cheri for me as they wheeled me down the hall immediately after the operation. I remember that call, and the awful post-op room, my impossibly sore throat from the intubation, the pain in my head... and waking up the next day, VERY happy to feel a little bit like myself. 

I had intermittent difficulty speaking, and a lot of trouble reading and writing. But with some effort, and time, I was able to call and text with Cheri, my mom and dad, and my brother. Because of the Covid restrictions, no one was allowed to visit me in person in the ward. 

I recovered quickly, and we were told my tumor was likely a Ganglioglioma and almost completely benign, but as a few weeks passed and I continued to feel better, the pathology reports came back, indicating a Glioblastoma, and a particularly difficult and aggressive one. 

From there, we had 2 weeks... 2 weeks to learn and process, and to spend as much time together with me feeling relatively "normal". Last week (mid-June, 2021), I began a 6-week course of daily radiation and chemotherapy. 

Cheri and I are still learning and processing and spending time together, and we are steeling ourselves for the long and formidable journey that lies ahead. I'll let her take over from here, because I have to go take a pill... 

Cheri here: Needless to say our world has been turned inside-out and we are completely overwhelmed. Every day feels like a week and the to-do lists are gargantuan. On the other hand, the care and help we have received over the last weeks has been equally staggering. We always knew our lives were full of beautiful people, but we didn't "know" know. Unfortunately, it's been impossible to communicate and catch up with everybody the way we would like to, and, we really wanted to find a way to share more of our story, and some of the other parts of our lives with the many people we appreciate and love. 

So this account is an attempt at that. If you'd like to keep up-to-date, we've made this Youtube channel where we will try to post semi-regular blog posts and videos of us doing the things we like to do best (mostly music, but some other things might pop up in there too, who knows).

If you'd like to support us financially, this is the place for that: 

We are very grateful to the many kind friends and family who have been so generous already, and we thank you so much in advance for your support.