I first learned about my brain tumor during a routine trip to the optometrist. After the regular exam, I asked if it was normal to have blind spots in my peripheral vision. The doctor said “definitely not,” and combined with my frequent headaches, was likely a sign of a pituitary tumor. He ordered a field of vision test for in the following days, and that further confirmed his suspicions. He then recommended I seek a neuro-ophthalmologist. I did so, and I was diagnosed with a pituitary adenoma. Naturally, I was afraid and sad to hear my diagnosis, but I had a small support system that kept me encouraged throughout the process.
At this point, I started to question what the costs would be, because I have not had health insurance in years and would be paying out of pocket. I researched health insurance and other benefits I could possibly apply for. That is how I stumbled across the Brain Tumor Network and decided to reach out to them. I was lucky enough to meet Tracy, who has been such a blessing in terms of keeping up with my ongoing situation and sharing information. And, on top of being very encouraging, she helped me get a grant from the Patient Advocate Foundation that I used to paid for my first MRI. I encourage anyone without insurance to seek as much assistance as possible, because there are a plethora of resources, whether it be informational or financial.