A new normal for a local dance studio owner who was recently diagnosed with a brain tumor.
In less than two months, Brandi Nichols has endured more than most can imagine.
After being diagnosed with grade two Astrocytoma, she has gained a positive perspective on life, family and her community.
A native Oregonian who has been dancing since the age of seven, the beloved owner of Bend’s family owned dance studio, Gotta Dance Studio & Co. Brandi is also mother to three beautiful daughters.
Brandi entered the summer with the expectation of most, a season full of fun and relaxation. Until she encountered a challenge she never saw coming.
“It was June 30th I ended up having a seizure, then we discovered what the reason was.” Brandi said. “We found out that I have a brain tumor.”
Brandi was diagnosed with low grade glioma. More specifically, grade two astrocytoma. During what may seem like the darkest of times, Brandi is looking at life in the brightest of ways saying, “I don’t think you can approach life in any other way than with positivity when you’re faced with the reality of a brain tumor.”
Since her diagnosis, Brandi has received an immense amount of support from her dance community, the Bend community, as well as local businesses. Web Foot Painting was so touched by Brandi’s story, they’ll be painting her dance studio free of charge.
Gavin Hepp, Owner of Web Foot Painting says, “For me, immediately I just though about my own family and felt the pain that they’re probably feeling. In those moments anything you can do to help is helpful.”
Even St. Charles Medical Center, where Brandi received her biopsy on August 7th, is taking care of all of her medical bills, about $50,000 worth, until the end of October. Including her neurosurgeon writing off her surgery.
“This diagnosis has woken me up to what life is supposed to be about.” say Brandi, “The way I am beating this is through gratitude for everybody that is taking care of me.”
Brandi has a long road of treatment ahead of her, and the future is uncertain. But what she does know is that there are cases out there far more serious than hers, and she is determined to remain optimistic