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PJ Yusten's Fundraiser:

Brain Tumors and Tooth Fairies

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BENEFITING:

EVENT DATE: Dec 24, 2013

PJ Yusten

THE STORY:

I wanna be a magic tooth fairy leaving stacks of money under Andy's pillow.  It takes more than the regular tooth fairy to pay the bill for oral surgery to implant teeth.  Cadaver bones, labs, x-rays and implants  call for the help of a rich fairy godmother. There is nothing left to ration.  The piggy bank no longer rattles with coins. After three years fighting brain cancer, the part of her tumor she calls 'the alien' still lives in her brain. She keeps saying not to worry-it's all in her head.

In late October 2013 on her 34th birthday, she got frightening news. Not about brain cancer.  Not losing more teeth.  No complaints about pain.  The reality of having no money scares her. "We'll need a $1,500 deposit with a balance of . . ." those words caused agitation, stress and frustration.  Too stubborn. Too proud.  Too honorable.

Three years ago, on her 31st birthday she started radiation and chemotherapy to treat an incurable brain tumor. The year before she was playing softball, kicking it with friends, enjoying a rewarding career, helping others and growing closer to her goddaughter and niece.

One day in August 2010 the 'good life' sank with the blood-red sun. Headaches. Searing pain. Blurred vision. The violent vomiting reminding me of the exorcist. While I crumpled into a weepy mess, she was the one who said all things happen for a reason. She was the one who insisted on no tears. No negative thoughts. She would not allow cancer to define her.

So in August she had an awake craniotomy. Then the announcement of oligioastrocytoma Grade II in left temporal lobe. Brain cancer. Primary  tumor. Rare.  No cure. She knew better. She opted for the clinical trial.

For someone like Andy,  the clichés about money aren't all that true. She has some time to lounge on the beach, drive a motorcycle and go skydiving. Plenty of time to cross numbers off her bucket list. But, just like the tooth implants, it takes dollars.

Starting a fundraiser for this fearless young lady can award her with a better quality of life to check off a few goals on her list. After the immediate problem with teeth is resolved, the dream of a family trip would make a great surprise.

In other words, I want her to be surrounded with laughter and love with no stress about how to pay for dentists, doctors, and such. For such a selfless, inspirational soul, it doesn't seem like too much to ask.

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PJ is working on selecting a charity so you can support Brain Tumors and Tooth Fairies.