“Cancer,” said doctor Andrew, “it’s back.”
“No this can’t be!” responded Mia’s mom, Angie.
Mia’s eyes started to well up with tears, and she was looking toward the floor as she said, “Mom, we knew that this could happen!”
Mia’s life had changed just 11 months ago, she was 14, the cancer was back. She could remember the moment that she fell, she fell from the taller of the two uneven bars at the gym. She hit her head hard. She was immediately rushed to the ER. When she got there they did not even ask her name, all they did was wheel her on the big white bed back through those big scary doors, and into the room with all of the lights. She knew what they are doing, looking at her brain, looking for the bump, the bump that would lead to the brain tumor.
3 DAYS LATER
“Mia!” called Angie, “Time to get up, we have to be at Dr.Andrew’s office in 45 minutes!”
Today was the day Mia was getting the nasty tumor removed. This was going to be a very long and meticulous surgery.
“Ok!” yelled Mia from her bed only one eye open and her hair a mess.
Mia had barely gotten any sleep because she was up all night pacing and worrying, her dog Arff, which she named when she was three, followed Mia up and down the hall, in and out of every room.
“Mia come and tell me what you want for breakfast,” commanded Angie.
“Mom I can’t eat remember, I am going to be put under,” responded Mia.
“Oh ya sorry!” yelled Angie from the kitchen.
20 Minutes Later
“Mia we need to leave!” Yelled Angie for what seemed like the third time.
Mia came out of her room with her head hanging down to her chest and tears streaming down her face.
“Mia what is wrong sweety!” Questioned Angie
“Mom stop acting like you don’t know,” Mia responded, “I am about to have my head cut open and a piece of fat removed from me!”
“I know,” said Angie. “Now get in the car and we can talk more when we get there.”
Mia and her mom walked into the familiar smelling hospital. They walked over to the big silver door and entered.
“Hello Mia!” said the little old lady who was sitting behind the check in desk.
“Hello, we are here for surgery,” said Angie.
“Yes I know,” said the little old lady, who had a name tag that read Jane. “Right this way!” and they followed Jane through the big doors and into room 319.
“This will be where you will be prepared for surgery, and also where you will start your recovery,” shared Jane.
“Thank you so much for your help!” responded Angie.
“Ya thanks!” said Mia.
Mia looked around at the white room, almost too white. It smelled like cleaner, and the air tasted as if it had been sprayed with some type of sterile spray. Mia was scared and you could tell by just looking at her.
“Mia you need to put on that gown over there,” commanded Angie.
“Ok, but no pictures, I don’t want anyone to see me in such a horrible looking outfit, not that it really is an outfit!” explained Mia.
“I won’t!” laughed Angie.
1 Hour Later
“Ok Mia, it will all be ok!” said Angie, as Mia was being rolled down the hallway on the hospital bed. Angie was having a hard time holding it together, but she knew that she had to be strong for Mia. If Mia knew that her mom was scared than Mia would be scared too.
“Ok Mia just lose your eyes and think of puppies!” encouraged the nurse.
Mia listened and closed her eyes and thought of Arff when he was just a little fella.
“Good Job! Almost Done!” encouraged the Nurse.
The nurse pulled the needle out of Mia’s arm. Mia was out almost instantly.
“Ok we need to work fast, as there will not be much time after we make the first incision,” Dr. Andrew informed this team of nurses that would be helping him perform the surgery. All of the nurses shook their heads in unison.
Dr. Andrew picked up the clippers and cut all of the hair on the left side of Mia’s head off. One of the nurses picked it up and put it in the trash. Then he picked up the sharpie and made a dashed line where the incision was going to be made.
6 Hours Later
“Hi Baby!” said Angie as she walked alongside Mia as she was being rolled back into the Recovery Room.
5 Hours Later
Mia lifted her hand up and felt her head, all she could feel was cloth and scalp. Her scalp, the scalp that just had to be shaved to get that nasty tumor out.
1 Month Later
“It looks very good, you will be back and at ‘em in no time!” said Dr. Andrew.
“That is great!” Mia and Angie responded excitedly.
Mia and Angie walked out of the office as Jane yelled, “I hope to never see you again!” but Mia knew that she ment it in a good way!
10 Months Later
“Now here is Mia Miller!” the announcer announced.
It all hit Mia: there she was 11 months after she had the nasty tumor removed. She was standing in the middle of the floor. She lifted her hand up and she could feel the hair that was not fully grown back in.
“Go Mia!” Angie yelled from the front row of Hilton Coliseum.
The crowd was starting to chant, “Mia!, Mia!, Mia!” very loudly.
Mia lifted up her hands and jumped onto the lowest bar, her brain was filled with so many thoughts. What if I fall, will the tumor come back, what if I fail? But she snapped out of it and got in the zone. She performed her routine flawlessly.
Those in the audience watched her fly and turn all around the bars. She moved with a sort of grace that made all of the audience members relax.
30 Minutes Later
“All competitors to the floor, I repeat all competitors to the floor!” announced the announcer.
Mia walked onto the floor shaking, but no one in the audience could tell. She held her head high and was very proud of herself for what she just did 11 months after her brain surgery.
“Ladies and gentlemen let's give all of these wonderful gymnast a round of applause!” encouraged the announcer. The crowd roared and Mia was getting more nervous as the seconds ticked by.
“Now the moment you have all been waiting for,” the Announcer said, “awards time!”
The crowd clapped and hollered.
“In third place we have...Martha Lee!” the announcer loudly pronounced.
The crowd clapped.
“In second place we have...Gracie May!” the announcer yelled.
The crowd roared.
“And in first place...we have...Mia Miller!” the announcer said very loudly.
Mia was just crying and laughing. She had the biggest smile on her face.
“Go Mia! We love you Mia! You’re my favorite gymnast ever!” These were all comments coming from the crowd.
Mia proudly walked up to the big black box and it felt great climbing up the third and second place boxes, know that she came in first.
She remembered being wheeled on the big white bed back through those big scary doors and into the room with all of the lights after she fell just months ago.
The crowd continued to clap, chant, yell, and scream!
One Word Changed It All
“Cancer,” said doctor Andrew, “it’s back.”