Savannah Lantz will be going for neurosurgery on Sept. 24 to the University of Alberta’s Hospital in Edmonton to remove a temporal lobe brain tumour.
“At first I thought I was going to die because it is such a shock to find out you have a brain tumor,” said Lantz. “I spent weeks and months Googling things about tumours, trying to figure out if my body was trying to tell me before I had my first seizure in January.”
According to the GoFundMe page for Lantz, which has raised $27,435 dollars (at the time of writing), her first seizure took place on Jan. 10. Lantz was rushed to the Yellowknife emergency room where she was tested before having a second seizure.
Testing resumed after a trip to Edmonton’s facility, where neurologists were able to determine the cause of the occurrences, “a temporal lobe brain lesion and a collection of abnormal cells that requires a brain biopsy.”
A speciality surgeon from Edmonton has been scheduled for Lantz in order to provide her the best chance possible.
“It just makes me feel exhausted,” said Lantz. “It’s not fun being sick, to watch yourself become more depressed and to feel like things are just going to get worse. Time is going by but it feels like I am frozen in time, sitting and waiting for surgery to happen. Going through medication changes and feeling sick so often that days go by and I haven’t been well enough to see any of my friends or go for a walk.”
Through all of this, Lantz credits her mom as her biggest support.
“Tanya Lantz,” said Savannah. “She has been there since day one and hasn’t left my side. My memory has gotten really bad, so she has been there making sure I take my medication and make it to every doctor’s appointment. Advocating for me with all her strength.”
Tanya thanked everyone for their incredible supported during her daughter’s difficult time.
“I love my daughter and she will get through this,” said Tanya. “Thank you to our community for helping.”
Savannah’s friend Tanya MacIntosh, who worked to get the GoFundMe page up and running, was also thankful for those who donated and poured out their support.
“I wanted to find a way to help the Lantz’s and set up Savannah’s GoFundMe page early February 2021,” said MacIntosh. “The response has been overwhelming and filled with love and support, Mahsi to all of you for those gifts.”
The high amount of community support left Savannah with a “warmed heart.”
”It is easy to feel alone and isolated,” said Savannah. “But … there has been great community support, especially with my GoFundMe.”
Savannah recalls her last trip to Edmonton back in June, where she underwent pre-operative testing for her memory.
“It was starting to get pretty stressful that day,” said Lantz. “Although no one ever wants to worry about it, I was really worrying about money that day, just knowing that this meant more trips to Edmonton to see the doctor, more time away from home to care for my health.
“It was getting particularly stressful in the afternoon portion,” she continued. “So I asked the very nice interview doctor lady if we could take a break. I had been in the interview room all day at that point and needed some fresh air. It was then that I looked at my phone and realized that my GoFundMe had gone up a few thousand dollars while I was at my appointment.
“I immediately started freaking out and called my mom so I could tell her about it, but it turns out that she lost her phone while she was waiting for me at my appointments so she was freaking out about that too. At the end of that day, I just remember feeling so thankful and relieved that everything would work out, no matter what happened or what the doctor said.”
Overall, Savannah says she’s “incredibly grateful for all of the support”, making her journey a less difficult one.
“I never thought something like this would happen to me,” said Savannah. “I know its not over yet, but walking into that operating room knowing that I have a whole community of people praying and cheering me on makes it a little easier. No one ever wants to go through something like this, but at least having a great supportive community makes the journey a little easier.
“Wish me luck.”