By Mollie Mansfield
A young woman ravaged by a tomato-sized brain tumour is begging for donations from strangers in a bid to save her life.
Natasha Shannahan, 35, was diagnosed with an incurable brain tumour in June 2016 after she noticed her head twitching in the mirror.
After several tests and becoming wheelchair-bound for long distances, Natasha underwent brain surgery to remove the tomato-sized tumour in March this year.
But surgeons struggled to remove all of Natasha’s tumour and despite their best efforts, her foot was left paralysed.
Now, Natasha is pleading to strangers for £30,000 in order to raise enough funds for her to have alternative treatment to save her life so she can one day have her dream family.
Natasha, from Penge, South-East London, said: “It is one of my dreams to settle down and have a family of my own one day, and I don’t want this tumour to get in the way of that.
“Despite having to sit awake throughout my brain surgery and having to go through the grueling recovery process, the idea of having a family makes it all worthwhile.
“Surgeons had hoped to remove all of my tumour in the surgery, but when my left foot became immediately paralysed during the operation, they decided to stop.
“They removed roughly 80 percent of the tumour, making it go from the size of a tomato sliced in half to grape-sized, but there is still enough left that it could grow back and become worryingly life-threatening.
“Due to the complications that happened with my first surgery, I can’t go through that again, so I’m pleading with strangers to help me raise funds for alternative treatments abroad.”
Natasha initially visited the doctors after she noticed her head and left arm jerking when she was looking in the mirror.
After realising that she was suffering with seizures, doctors performed tests on her brain and detected the large tumour.
The tumour then continued to grow at an alarming rate, leaving doctors no choice but to perform surgery on her brain, which left her partially paralysed.
Natasha said: “I was very anxious about having the surgery as I knew that I could become paralysed, I’m just lucky that it was only my foot that went.
“After having the surgery, and losing the use of my foot, I knew that I couldn’t go through it again, so I started looking to other alternatives.
“That’s when I found out about herbal medications all over the world, but I couldn’t afford to go and meet the people who supply them.
“I knew that I had to do something, as I wasn’t going to let this tumour paralyse or even kill me, so I decided to start fundraising.
“I’m very young to have to face such a big thing, and I have the rest of my life ahead of me, so I know there has to be another way!”
Alongside raising money to ensure that Natasha is able to live a healthy life to have a family of her own, she is also excited to have her independence back.
She added: “After surgery I felt as though I lost myself and all of my independence was gone because I had to rely on everyone else.
However hopefully with new treatment I won’t have to do this, and I’ll be able to look after myself again.
“My family and friends have been amazing, and very supportive throughout my journey, but now I want to work with alternative medicines to help prolong my life and eventually one day have a family of my own.
“I want to be able to ditch the wheelchair and walk for longer than a couple of minutes again.
“Hopefully I will raise enough money to go and find the perfect treatment to stop me feeling burdened by my own brain.”
To donate towards Natasha’s life saving treatment, visit: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/natasha-shannahan