It took two trips from the ambulance to figure out the severity of what was going on. The first time I started to come around, was able to walk out to the rig, get some fluids. They assumed it could be dehydration, possibly caused by the blood pressure meds. I sold it well that I was “fine.” But when the ordeal happened less than 10 minutes later and the same team came back with a supervisor? I realized I wasn’t fooling anyone. Something was wrong.
The supervisor told my wife Sanekia, “He doesn’t have a choice, he’s getting airlifted somewhere.” A storm was rolling in, and it was between Atlanta and Chattanooga. Chattanooga was closer, so they decided that was the plan. My wife and a few family members got in a car and started driving that way. It’s was about a two-hour trip. If the storm changed direction, they would reroute to Atlanta–and my wife would be in the opposite direction. This was one of the few “positives” of the night.
I was airlifted to Erlanger Hospital in Chattanooga. I didn’t know this at the time. I remembered the ride in the ambulance, and getting in the chopper. It’s a blur after that. I woke up at the hospital, not exactly sure where. My wife was there. The conversation is foggy at best. But the topic was not. It was a tumor, GBM. Specifically, a Glioblastoma Multiforme. By definition, it’s a Grade 4. One of the most aggressive brain cancers there are. At this time, I’m still just 38 years old, with our first baby due in December. What is happening??