Kelly Stafford, the wife of Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford, shared with fans on Wednesday in a post shared to social media that is planning to undergo surgery for a recently diagnosed brain tumor.
Wednesday shortly before noon, Stafford shared two snapshots to her Instagram: one of herself with husband Matthew and another of her MRI scan with an arrow pointing to the tumor.
“This is a picture of Matthew & I the day we found out,” Stafford wrote. “I said I wanted this picture of us, so that the day this was all over, we could look back at this photo [and] remember.”
Stafford adds that within the last year, she began to “notice things” and likened it all to age. However, when she would spend time with their children and show them how to do front rolls and twirls in ballet class, she would “feel dizzy” and “off balance.”
“Things that I had been doing my entire life were now, all of a sudden, difficult,” she wrote.
However, it was the beginning of January when she first experienced a vertigo spell that pushed her into the ER — something that she adds “kept happening,” even when she held their children.
“Matthew took me straight to the ER. They checked vitals [and] bloodwork, all were fine,” she wrote. “[But] several vertigo spells later, Matthew’s team doctor recommended we go get an MRI of my brain to rule everything major out.”
Stafford writes that it was just a few days later that they were hit with the results.
“I had a tumor sitting on some of my cranial nerves,” she wrote. “The medical term they used was an acoustic neuroma or vestibular schwannoma. All I heard was brain tumor [and] that they had to do surgery to take it out.. so that is what we are going to do [and] we believe we found the best doctor to do it.”
Stafford, the mother of three admits she is “terrified” of the surgery.
“I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t completely terrified of brain surgery. I am,” she reveals. “I am terrified of them opening my head, I’m terrified of losing my hearing, I’m terrified of losing facial function, I’m terrified of far worse things that could happen and I’m terrified that I won’t take the time I need to recover because the guilt I might feel of being absent from my kids for too long.. I am telling y’all this to ask for prayers and support.”
Stafford tells fans she would love prayers for “calmness in these next 2 weeks” as she is well aware her anxiety will run high, especially leading to the surgery; that God will be in the room with the surgeons to “give them all the guidance, steadiness, [and] confidence they need.” And finally, “safety during and after surgery,” as well.
Additionally, Stafford asks fans to “please pray” for her husband as she knows his nerves will be high during this surgery.
“I couldn’t imagine being out in that waiting room,” she adds before thanking fans and followers for their prayers, thoughtfulness and support.
According to the Mayo Clinic, treatment for an acoustic neuroma might include monitoring, therapy or surgery, which is most often “performed under general anesthesia and involves removing the tumor through the inner ear or through a window in” the patient's skull.
However, in some cases, the entire tumor may not be removed if it is too close to important parts of the brain or facial nerve. Complications from the surgery could include facial numbness, balance problems, hearing loss and stroke.
Stafford and her quarterback playing husband began dating as undergraduate students at Georgia and wed in 2015. They share three children together, which includes twin girls, Sawyer and Chandler born in 2017 and daughter Hunter, born August 2018.
The two have been an active force in community, including adopting several local families in need every holiday season and most recently, spent $1 million to refurbish a local recreation center.
Matthew, who has served the Lions for 10 seasons, holds nearly every franchise passing records and is expected to top 40,000 passing yards and 250 touchdowns in a career total this fall.0comments
The Lions did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
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