Hello! My name is Jack Watson, and this is my story.
Severe asthma is something I have battled all my life, but when I started my third year in high school things took a turn for the worse. I started getting migraines that became so debilitating I was unable to get out of bed. A medical withdrawal from school, and a hundred doctor visits later, I had found out that I had a brain tumor.
That’s something completely foreign to a teen. Denial, disbelief and sadness sunk in. This was a time in my life when I was supposed to be growing, prospering and enjoying life, not what felt like dying. Then something amazing happened.
I was recommended to a specialty team at UNC. I felt a breath of fresh air. It was the first time I was made comfortable not just physically but mentally. Knowing that these doctors really were specialists in their field, having done countless surgeries specifically with brain tumors (mine being in my pituitary gland).
It’s hard for a kid in high school to understand math class, much less the effects and origin of a brain tumor, but I felt like I had mastered it. I was educated in not only what was causing it but the effects it had on me, how I could cope and the treatment, which would be removal.
Fast forward 3 years. I’m in college, having graduated high school on time, and I was heavily involved in class and around campus. I served as the chair of the Student Conduct Board, a member of our University Recreational Council, as well as numerous roles in our University Housing on campus.
Not only did UNC change my life by saving it, but they also encouraged me to do things I had never done before. Like a parent who encourages a child to do great things, UNC gave me the tools I needed to be the person I am today, and I am blessed every day because of it. Thanks to the amazing doctors of UNC and to God who was with me every step of the way, I am here today. Never give up faith, and never give up hope.
It is thanks to my father and his associates at Braswell Family Farms that I am able to share this amazing story with you at Victory Ride.
You can support our mission partners, like UNC Lineberger, by riding in the 2019 Victory Ride to Cure Cancer presented by Braswell Family Farms on Saturday May 18!