When Mayers is feeling worse, she has to use a cane. She said she needs a ramp to her home as she has fallen on more than one occasion. (Picture by Justin Newton-Gadsby.)
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Sherrie-Anne Mayers does not let anything get her down, not even the news that she has multiple brain tumours.
The 56-year-old Fairview Heights, St George resident said she continued to live her life as normally as possible, praising God for the strength to continue despite the fact that some days the throbbing in her head becomes almost unbearable.
The news of having such an affliction would be enough to send anyone into a fit of sobbing but with no fewer than four in her head it is a marvel Mayers still finds the will to get up in the morning. Although, to tell the truth, she has little choice.
“I don’t sleep much; my four little boys (her pet name for the tumours) keep me up. So I often get up early in the morning and clean, sweep, wash and everything. I am not sick, just in pain. Depression is not part of my psyche,” she said.
Mayers’ tale of courage began in 2013 when she started getting bad headaches. She said she suffers from high blood pressure, so she figured that was the culprit. That is, until the headaches got even worse.
“In 2014 I realised they were getting more intense and my left eye started to bulge. I went to the polyclinic and was referred to the hospital, where I started seeing neurologist Professor David Corbin, who told me I needed an MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) which cost $2 300, which I couldn’t afford.
“One night my head was hurting me so bad I thought I would die so I prayed and asked ‘Father, please show me someone who would pay for this MRI’ and a name came to me,” she said.
Just like that, Mayers contacted the company which came to her mind and the boss there, who she requested not be named, agreed to pay for her procedure.
“I want to thank them; they know who they are,” she said.
The initial MRI showed three tumours, the largest one pushing against her left eye socket. Mayers said she started a yearlong regimen of steroids and from there she was referred to surgeon Dr John Gill. She said she also changed her diet, eliminating white flour and sugar and incorporating more fruits and vegetables. But in 2016, the news got worse.
“In August 2016 I was admitted to the hospital. My headaches were so bad I again thought I would die and my blood pressure had flown up. I knew I needed the procedure done to remove the tumours but after realising it couldn’t be done here, I sent my information to a medical facility in Miami,” she said.
It was then she was told there was yet another tumour in her brain. Not only that, but the price quoted to remove them was way out of her budget, not to mention the facility requesting an additional MRI, another cost. With all this, she decided to look elsewhere, finally settling on Cuba.
“A door opened and I sent my information to Cuba and there is where I plan to be heading, hopefully by the end of February,” she said.
However, Mayers still needs the funds to get there. She said she has people such as her church group and alumni association, Lynch’s Secondary, sourcing funds but she needs at least $20 000. As such, she is appealing for help from the public. She has a Republic Bank account 021335311002 for the purpose of donations.
“I didn’t want to go this route but a friend convinced me,” she said.
With all these trials and tribulations, Mayers remains upbeat. She spends every day praising God and continues to be independent, catching the bus as she no longer drives very often. She said she is a known person on the bus with her signature hats and has a very supportive and prominent family although she has no children.
“I get my personality from my dad, Ezekiel “Jerry” Mayers, who was an ex-policeman and insurance agent with Alico back in the day. He’s deceased now. I also get support from my mother Natalie Mayers, who was recently awarded for 50 years’ driving without getting into an accident, and my niece Ghelisa Mayers, who was one of the Riddim Tribe dancers on The Wendy Williams Show,” she said. (CA)