Can you imagine being told you are dying at the mere age of 23?  That’s exactly what doctors told Josie Blaine when they discovered she had a severe tumor growing in her brain.

Blaine, who is a Bismarck Native, recently released her new book “Out of my Mind,” writing down her detailed journey of what life was like after having a brain tumor.

Josie Blaine was a local radio show host and college student when she got the tragic news. At first they thought Blaine was just showing signs of depression, and it was nothing more than that. Little did they know that she had a tumor that had been growing rapidly in her brain for almost 3 years.

“I learned how to walk and talk and dress myself all over again when I was 23,” says Blaine. 
Josie Blaine was your typical college student going to class, working, all while trying to keep somewhat of a social life. But things suddenly took a turn for the worse.
“In college I started getting headaches, and dizzy, and started acting kind of weird.”
Blaine says not only was she experiencing those symptoms but she was losing weight and her friends noticed her personality was off, all things she thought might have been something every college student goes through. Then she started having seizures, panic attacks, and her body would go numb. That’s when she went to the doctor. 
“The PA in the ER said you cat scan is abnormal, you will have to be hospitalized. And I had been a given a shot of Demerol because I was in so much pain that I thought abnormal…what does that mean?”
Little did Blaine know that she had a tumor the size of a tennis ball growing inside her brain.
“You wanna know what my first thought was…that explains that,” says Blaine. “I kinda figured out there was a tumor but I didn’t know the severity of it.”
Doctors said if Blaine hadn’t come in when she did she would have died.
Blaine says, “The first neurosurgeon came in at 9:30 in the morning and he said no I can not do this surgery. It was the end, my surgeons said I had about 24 hours left and it had been growing for about 3 years.”
Blaine said everything happened so fast she had no time to even be afraid. She was fortunate enough to have one of the best neurosurgeons in the nation at the time agree to do her surgery. She only had a two and half day gap between the day she found out about the tumor to when she went in for surgery. The surgery was successful but the recovery process was anything but easy.
“It took about 10 years for my surgeon to tell me that I was perfect.”
Blaine has spent the last 19 years of her life writing the book “Out of my Head” describing her experiences of what life has been like for her. She says hopefully people can find the strength to keep moving forward if they are going through something similar.
“If for just one person not feeling alone then this is worth it,” says Blaine.
She says the feedback from her book has been one of the most incredible things she has gotten to experience through this whole process.
“I have gotten some of the most amazing emails. Because I have these lightning pains all along here where they operated and I have had those for 20 years, I mean 19 years. Somebody emailed me and said I thought I was the only one and I didn’t know what to call them, and now I can call them lightning pains and know that I’m not alone.”
Blaine offers one last comment for people that might be going through the same struggles she has been through.
“It didn’t end me. I had a brain tumor that was 24 hours from killing me. How do you know that your mission on earth is not complete, well you’re still here.”
I asked Blaine how she has been able to stay so positive through this whole experience and she told me “Coffee and Jesus.”
For more information about Blaine’s book and complete detailed journey, click here.