I was putting the final touches of my make up on when I received a text.

“They think I am having a stroke. I am going to Mt Sinai West’s ER”.

I was supposed to attend the premiere of M. Night Shyamalan’s new movie “Old” that evening, the first event I would attend in New York City. I stopped everything I was doing, put away my makeup, put on my shoes and walked straight to Mt. Sinai West.

That was the day my life changed forever.

Glioblastoma Multiforme Grade 4

You don't know unless you are in our actual shoes

Things happen in your life and you know it will never be the same, but there is nothing like this feeling. July 19, 2021 we were told my husband, Rehan Aslam, had a mass in his brain. I almost fainted when the ER attending so coldly told us. I was overcome with hysteria, I couldn’t control my emotions and kept staring at Rehan to see his reaction. He looked away and said “I want to see Rafae”. Rafae was in Cincinnati for the summer. I immediately called my mom and sister and told them what we had just found out. Rehan was admitted to a room that night. Around midnight, carrying Rehan’s scooter, I went home.

July 20, 2021 we found out it was a “glioma”. The Neurosurgeons and the team sounded upbeat but I couldn’t help but notice sadness in one of the neurosurgeons eyes as she continually said “I’m sorry” to me. I don’t think I even understood the gravity of the situation.

All Rehan wanted to know was “when can I go back to work?” Rehan had just begun to work his dream job, Vice President of ABC 7 NY (the number 1 station in the world) that he worked so hard to achieve. He used to live and breathe his work. He had his “bigger than a golf ball but smaller than a tennis ball” sized tumor removed on July 21st.

July 26, 2021 the biopsy results are back, we find out Rehan has Glioblastoma grade 4. The absolute worst type of brain cancer anyone can have. I felt a little deceived by the optimism the surgeons had displayed knowing how terrible the diagnosis could be. Rehan’s peripheral vision had been compromised and he would start Chemo and Radiation on Aug 23rd.

August 13, 2021 Rehan goes in for scans to qualify for certain trials that Mt. Sinai is conducting for patients with Glioblastoma Mutliforme.

August 17, 2021 I walked into Saks after work to buy something nice for Rehan when I received the call that Rehan’s tumor had grown back and was quite aggressive. They had already scheduled him in for surgery for that Friday. August 21, 2021 Rehan had his second but wider resection in his brain.

I am sitting here on September 4, 2021 trying to put into words what my life has been like. Our lives, Rafae, Rehan, and mine have completely changed. I feel like I am in some sick movie. I wish I could press a button and make all of this go away but I can’t. I google Glioblastoma 10,000 times a day, and read about the trials 100 times a day. I have educated myself and joined groups so I can understand this disease better. What I can tell you is we came to New York with our hearts bursting with joy, filled with hope, and couldn’t wait to see what was in store for us. I managed to land my dream job as Senior Accountant for Marc Jacobs. Yes that’s right I worked at the headquarters for 2 weeks and 2 days. It still hurts knowing I can’t work, but I knew I had to put my family first.

Every day is not only a physical challenge but an emotional challenge. So many opinions, people telling you how to feel, how to cope, how to deal, how to be a caretaker. Taking care of my husband is something I pride in. I will always be his cheerleader and the best mom I can be to my son. I want to tell the world I am 43 and I will be just fine.

I want to thank my friend Mariam Yusuf who told me Prayer, Positivity, and Pictures will help us get through this time. It has definitely helped and will continue to!

I have always been a fighter and I will help my husband fight this. I believe in self healing, the power of prayer. If you are reading this please pray for Rehan Aslam.