in the middle of the covid pandemic and the hellish year that was twenty-twenty, at the age of forty one, i learned that i had a brain tumor. a slow growing glioma astrocytoma. when my surgeon saw my MRI he said "you and this tumor are good friends. it's been there probably since maybe your late teens..."
so i thought if we're such good friends, she oughtta have a name. talula the tumor was the first thing that came to mind (i am a big fan of alliteration and the tori amos song talula).
when talula was taken out, she filled a coffee cup (i don't know if it was a styrofoam cup, grande or super big gulp). my surgeon had removed 95% of talula and the rest would be up to radiation and chemotherapy.
a few weeks later i got a call from a very nice woman at the hospital and she asked me if the hospital could keep my tumor in their tumor bank. it would be used for research and might be helpful in my future treatments and/or other patients'.
i immediately agreed. as a member of the tribe of nerdz, i was thrilled to be a part of this. a BANK? my tumor would live on in a BANK?? tumor banks are really a thing???
talula is my oldest, dearest friend and i am her only friend. so, even though she tried to kill me, i decided i should be a good friend and write her letters while she's there.
in the past, i've had trouble being a good friend. there are other old friends strewn around the country that i've lost touch with, none of whom live in a bank or tried to kill me. since talula showed up, i've been looking back and realizing how many fond memories i have and am reminded of how lucky i have been.
i wonder if talula shares my appreciation for (or even has) these memories... so that's what i write to her about while she is taking her long nap in the tumor bank.