“Today, I found out I have a brain tumor”
by Cindy Crosby | March 17, 2016 1:26 pm
Last Updated: March 17, 2016 at 1:50 pm
Lady Cougar Soccer team donates their portion of alumni game to Zirk
Sierra Zirk, a senior at Colleton County High School, made a Facebook post on the evening of March 9, 2016 that would quickly go viral and melt the hearts of the community.
“Okay, as everyone has probably found out, I’ve had a pretty busy day. Today, I found out that I have a brain tumor. Even though it’s not inside my brain, it is still called that because it’s pressing on my brain and the nerves that go to my eyes, mouth, and all my face; which is pretty serious. It’s a pretty good size tumor, bigger than a golf ball, so it’s big. But, I know who’s in charge and he’ll work his wonders.”
According to Sierra, she had been suffering with headaches for a while. In fact, she had been diagnosed with chronic migraines last year. “I have not been feeling great lately,” said Zirk. “I was light-headed sometimes, especially when I would bend a certain way, and my left eye was a little blurry and seemed dilated at times.”
But on Sunday, March 6, it would become evident to Sierra and her parents, Jason and Tammy, that something was possibly wrong. “I had been shooting skeet and came inside,” recounted Sierra. “I showered and went to pull-up my hair and that is when I passed out. My parents and I thought it was my equilibrium because my ears felt funny. Then, we noticed that my eye was now staying dilated.”
Sierra made an appointment with her local physician on Tuesday and was then referred to see an eye doctor on Wednesday. “We went to the eye doctor and when we got there, they turned us around and sent us to the emergency room. From there, we were sent to MUSC,” explained Sierra.
By that evening, Sierra learned she was suffering from a schwannoma, a typically benign, slow-growing tumor found in the nerve sheath which covers the brain.
At this time, Sierra and her parents know that she’ll be facing one surgery, or possibly more, to remove the tumor and may need radiation down the road. She will learn more following extensive testing and scans, which are scheduled for this upcoming week.
Over the course of the past week, Sierra has been heroic in her approach to what she is facing. In fact, she has only missed one day of school after learning of her condition. “I am so thankful that they are letting me attend my prom and enjoy spring break,” admitted Sierra. “I am so happy that I get to at least enjoy the time before my surgery with my friends and family.”
The Colleton County Soccer Program held their annual alumni game this past Wednesday evening and a donation was taken up at the gate to help with Sierra’s medical expenses, all of which will not be covered by her insurance. Also, the Lady Cougars Soccer team donated their portion of the fundraiser to Sierra for a grand total of $1288. “Even though Sierra isn’t a soccer player, she is a part of Colleton County High School,” said Coach Danny Wiggins. “Tragedies like this affect us all.”
Several more fundraisers are being planned for Sierra and her family, with details to be released in the future. As for Sierra, she simply asks for prayers for she and her family over the next few weeks and wishes to thank everyone for their continued love and support.