I'm sorry you are feeling so much anxiety about this life and death diagnosis. I know my daughter Chelsea really does not want to talk too much about it because it stresses her out at times. She seems to look at it as, "well at least they found it and got me into surgery to take care of it before it was too late"!
She was like you in that she was young when diagnosed (17) and it was a big one..5.5+cm. Her surgeons at UCLA also said that they had never seen an AN tumor that size in someone so young. Her brain stem was being pushed over into the left hemisphere and she had severe hydrocephalus because the tumor had blocked her 4th ventricle. She was admitted 2 days after meeting the surgeons, 1 week after diagnosis, and was in the hospital/neuro-rehab for 3 months because of every complication possible. They were able to get approx. 70% of the tumor. She started 28 FSR-Novalis radiation treatments 3 weeks after being released from the hospital.
Her surgery was also very bloody-which they did not expect-and she was given 2 or 3 units of blood (I don't remember now) during surgery and another unit 2 days after surgery.
After all of this...the dang thing grew back and in June 2009 she had another surgery that got 95%. Because of the bleeding during the first go around they admitted her 2 days before the AN surgery and did a cranio-angiogram which cauterized (sp) most of the blood vessel feeding the tumor. When they did the surgery they said she had very little bleeding.
It took her a couple of months to recover and then she went back to school to start her Junior year. She is now in her last semester of her Senior year. The last surgery left her with facial paralysis and she is now facing a nerve graft surgery in the next 3-5 weeks. Depends on the outcome of some tests at the end of the month.
I am the one that does all the researching about the tumor and its effects on her life (our lives). Again, she said she would rather me filter it for her and live in denial about other stuff.
This is hard for anyone to have to educate themselves about but knowledge is power and that power is what will get results. One of our motto's around here is:
"be a survivor not a victim"! This does not always work but most times it helps.
I hope you can find some peace that they found your tumor when they did and were able to treat you. Try not to let this consume you and fill you with anxiety. You are alive and young and ready to take on the world with an experience that can make you appreciate things so much more than before your diagnosis.
Here's to peace of mind,