It is so hard to believe that it has been three months since I was waking up from surgery in California. Today, I am writing this blog from my humble abode in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. I apologize for not updating in a while but I have been consumed with schoolwork and social activities. (YAY!!!) Although the road to recovery is not the fastest one, each day I slowly gain more strength and feel the best I have felt in a long time.

As far as symptoms go, everything improves with each passing day. It has become easier to study. Headaches are much less often and less painful than before surgery. Strength grows each day by pushing myself to get out and about! Vision is better, but still has room for improvement. My incision is completely healed! My sleeping is still a little rocky but that will come with time. Overall, there is no doubt in my mind that for the past two years of my life when I was suffering with what I thought was sinus headaches, they were pineal cyst related.

The best advice for anyone who is going through the road to recovery from this surgery is a positive attitude and to set realistic goals for yourself. This past weekend I went to my first Alabama football game of the season! I must admit that I was a bit nervous going into it but it could not have gone any better. I took everything very slow that day and listened to my body. I had a great time and was very exhausted by the end of the day. It feels so good to be slowly getting back to doing the things I love! My goal for the next few weeks is to go to the gym for a light workout for the first time since before surgery!

This journey continues to teach me a new life lesson each day. From patience, appreciation of the small things, and trusting God in the deepest valleys and highest mountains. I cannot thank everyone enough for their continued prayers and support. God is so good!

Much love,

P.S. Remember if you have any questions about my journey with a pineal gland cystic tumor, feel free to email at!

Here are some pictures of what I have been up to lately!!

Outside Bryant-Denny Stadium with my family! Missing mom in this picture (AKA the photographer)


So good to be back with my sweet friends!Image
Last week we got our ”littles” in my sorority!!! I love my precious little, Halle!

frands5Recent photo from shoot with Frank Carnaggio!




2 responses »

  1. Hi AE! You don’t know me but I stumbled onto your blog. I’m a Psi alum and I’ve got my alum sisters praying for you now! I really enjoyed reading about your incredible journey and I wish you the best. You are an inspiration!

  2. Hi there :}

    I am considering getting my pineal cyst removed and any information you can share here is certainly helpful. Thank you! I get very anxious anytime I think about the reality of this surgery….I just feel like it is so vulnerable of a location that something bad will go wrong.

    But, having this headache & dizziness & feeling of a screen between me and reality each day isn’t something I want to experience for the rest of my life either… (assuming the cyst doesn’t grow!).

    Did your insurance company cover your surgery? And if so, which insurance provider do you use? I am very interested in any financial information you have since I too am considering Dr. Shahinian.

    Thanks so much for sharing your story. Bless you x

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