Surgery Day, Feb. 11, 2016

Twitter tag: #brainsurgerylive


5:44 AM

[pullquote align=”full” cite=”Fran Cannon Slayton, morning of surgery” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]I woke up with the song “She blinded me with science” by Thomas Dolby on my mind. [/pullquote]

I woke up with the song “She blinded me with science” by Thomas Dolby on my mind. I thought I might start shouting “science!” during my surgery, thinking it was funny. Those of you who went to high school and college with me will probably remember the song, and how the word”Science!” Must be shouted with a fake British accent. I think my neurosurgeon is too young to know this song, so I am going to try to refrain from actually doing this during my surgery. He might just think I’m weird, and we wouldn’t want that.

[pullquote align=”full” cite=”Fran Cannon Slayton, morning of surgery” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]…I am going to try to refrain from actually doing this during my surgery. He might just think I’m weird, and we wouldn’t want that.[/pullquote]

I actually downloaded the song and listened to it a little bit this morning. It made me laugh. But then I stopped it, in favor of my theme song “Love and Mercy,” which is exactly what I need.

My hope is to stay in and appreciate and be grateful for each moment I go through this morning. It is a big task, but I think it is possible.

While I know I am the one who must walk this path, I am aware this morning that I do not go into it alone, that this journey is not just mine, that there is grace and love going with me. I have food for the journey. Thank you for being that food. Will look forward to “talking” to you via blog later today.


5:57 AM

Photos of Fran readying for surgery.

Dressed for Brain Surgery Today

Ready for Brain Surgery Today

Fran Cannon Slayton, ready for brain surgery today.

My Surgeon & Me (snapped earlier)

[pullquote align=”full” cite=”Fran Cannon Slayton, before surgery day” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]Me and my surgeon, Dr. Asthagiri – the man to pray for![/pullquote]

Dr. Asthagiri, surgeon, and Fran Cannon Slayton, patient

Fran with her favorite UVa neurosurgeon, Dr. Ashok R. Asthagiri


9:50 AM

[pullquote align=”full” cite=”Fran Cannon Slayton” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]Ready to roll to OR[/pullquote]

Ready to roll to operating room for brain surgery


11:06 AM

I am awake and the doctor is looking at my brain. My head hurts a little where they have put the bolts to keep it still, and my IV is bugging me. The doctor says everything is going great and if the IV is the worst thing bugging me, things are going well. Next update around 1:00pm. Love,

[pullquote align=”full” cite=”Fran Cannon Slayton, during brain surgery” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]I am awake and the doctor is looking at my brain.[/pullquote]

11:46 AM

[pullquote align=”full” cite=”Fran Cannon Slayton, during brain surgery” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]I can feel them taking out my tumor and it is kind of weird.[/pullquote]

Love, Fran

12:19 PM

It is not as bad as I thought it was going to be. I am thankful to have Stephen (nurse) helping me the whole way.

2:29 PM

Fran’s OR nurse called Fran’s husband, Marshall. Here’s that update:

The nurse reported that the doctors are closing Fran now. After removing the tumor, they did an MRI in the OR and found some additional tumor. The doctors went back in and took it out. Everything went well. Thanks to all for your prayers.

Love, Marshall

6:19 PM

Recovering from brain surgery today

[pullquote align=”full” cite=”Fran Cannon Slayton, recovering from brain surgery performed earlier today” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]I made it to the other side of Thursday.  Thank you for your prayers.  They mean more than you know.[/pullquote]


Day after Surgery

[pullquote align=”full” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]Well, here I am! Apparently most of my brain is still in tact-personally I don’t really notice any differences, although Marshall says my “filter” is gone so maybe I am going to be a little more direct in the future? [/pullquote]

Day after brain surgery - Fran Cannon Slayton

The day after.

Well, here I am! Apparently most of my brain is still in tact-personally I don’t really notice any differences, although Marshall says my “filter” is gone so maybe I am going to be a little more direct in the future? Joking. I think that is just a convenient excuse I will use!

Joking. I think that is just a convenient excuse I will use!

Anyway, I am definitely swollen, and they tell me I will be more swollen tomorrow-I might have two black eyes. We shall see. More pictures soon. Please keep praying for me as I recover.  Quite unbelievably, there is a possibility I could go home tomorrow (Saturday!). But I think it is more likely that I will go home Sunday. We’ll just have to see how it all goes. Truthfully, I am not in any rush.

Of course, I could not have made it this far without you all behind me. Of course. Of course! I am very, very mindful of this, and I am forever indebted to you.


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162 Comments on "Blogging During Brain Cancer Surgery – Feb. 11, 2016"

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Elizabeth Broderick

My yoga class is praying for you. I’m so glad the surgery is over.

Nicole Clarke

So glad to hear the surgery went well! You make it sound like a breeze. 😉 Get some rest – I’m sure you need it! I will continue sending positive energy to you and the family. ❤️

mary susan

Fran, I have been praying all day and am elated that everything went well. Your blog is such a gift to all who care about you, and blogging during surgery is nothing short of spunky and life affirming. Count on continued prayers for healing and recovery. much love, Mary Susan


It gave me something to do besides want to panic 🙂 Surprisingly, I didn’t even feel the need to panic at any point. The medical team was a marvel. Don’t tell them exactly how much of a marvel – they need to stay just as cool as they are. But they are a true marvel. I am one very lucky lady.

Phil and Mary

Had trouble going to sleep last night thinking about you. Prayers and thoughts all day. Love you, Mary

Patti Clifford

Thanks be to God!


Oh, Fran, it’s so good to read this and hear that all went well. We’ve been keeping you in prayer all day. I knew you would rock this!! We will continue to keep you, Marshall and Hannah and your parents in our prayers. Love you!! Bernie, Olivia and Emily

Mary Ann Marinchick

So thankful that your surgery went well – we all prayed for you at the Soup Kitchen today, and we all will hold you close each week in prayer as you continue your journey of healing.
Big hug to you, Marshall, Hannah and Mom & Dad
Mary Ann

Pat Laurenz

Have been holding you in prayer all day long. So glad the surgery is now behind you. But really–blogging your own surgery. You are something else. Love u lots

Andrea Ross

Praying for you off and on this past week as you prepared for surgery. I woke up at 3 am and started to pray again for you and your doctor’s hands. You CAN do this!! Now to the recovery phase.


Thomas Dolby. Great stuff. I put this on an 80’s mix for my daughter. She thinks it is hilarious.


Hannah has very funny DNA to work with there, Mr. Biggles!

Ben Ray

Fran and Marshal and Hannah,

Maruta and I have been thinking of you all morning, and find Fran’s blogging during your surgery especially awesome! Congrats on (maybe) being the first to do this!



Thank God and your surgeons and doctors and your strong life spirit.

Phil & Mary Wotring

We’re staying close to your progress through the day. To borrow a phrase “this is a day that will live in infamy”.

Lynda Myers

I think it’s clear that you must play that song for the good doctor 🙂

So glad all went well this morning and happy that the OR experience was interesting rather than frightening. Continued prayers for healing and recovery.

Janel Sennewald

Fran and Marshall,
You are Christ’s light shining from under the bushel basket. Thinking of you all and praying for health and comfort daily and especially throughout today. I tried to visualize the tumor cells departing, in Fran’s stead today. The blog is a blessing.

Bruce Williamson

You guys are amazing: living every moment! Thank you for the updates. Looking and hoping for the best news possible after the lab folks do their thing. And looking forward to the writing that Fran will make of this for many years to come. Go Fran!

Ted Hollifield

(posting after surgery) You did it Fran! So proud of you and looking forward to your healing and recovery. Marshall, keeping you in my prayers as well.

Claire duFief Greer

Oh Fran! We are so happy to hear this news especially that there was extra and they got it! Prayers prayers prayers to you and Marshall and your daughter.
I hope you did yell out svi bc at some point! Then your doctor would know you are really hair being you! Xo big big big hug from SMA Claire

Jean Makurat

I’m so grateful that you’ve been willing and able to share so much of this journey with all of us. What love and support from all over! Thank you God! The prayers are still coming!!

jenny gardiner

what amazing technology that you can even say that you can feel them removing the tumor from your brain. Extraordinary, what humans can achieve. And so graceful, how you are walking along this path. Sending many prayers and warm thoughts

Jenny Cantwell

Your peace, spirit, strength, courage and faith are inspiring! It is without question that Our Lord and Our Lady are with you and holding you close as you continue on your journey.
Prayers today for you and your family, and your tumor. May the Holy Spirit be guiding the hands of your surgeons, and bring you healing and wholeness.❤️❤️

Kelley Weddington

Cuz….the old nurse in me is amazed you’re commenting during it all!! Very cool! Been praying for you, your doctors and team, and for Marshall, Hannah, and aunt Betty and Uncle Jim!! We love you all so much!
Kelley and Pete and kiddies

Marian Gross

What an amazing woman you are Fran! You and science make quite a pair. After this getting an IV will be a piece of cake. And the prayers continue…..

Kathy Childs

I put you name on the mass intentions for today at St Peters so you have a whole church praying for you. There are two more masses today including anointing of the sick at 1:15. We’ve got you covered here in Chicago.

Lisa Lewis

I’ve been singing the “science” song all day. Thanks! 😉 I’m so glad to read that things are going even better than you’d expected! Thank you for posting so regularly. I’ve been thinking of you all last night and today and the posts are so nice to read. I can’t wait to see you after I get back from MA! IN the mean time, I know you have a great team of people to facilitate your speedy recovery.

Christine Ziegler

We have been praying for you every day at our household morning prayer, and also at my work morning prayer.

Good heavens, Ms. Slayton, you’re beautiful!!!! 🙂

Love Christine


What a wonderful sentence: “I can feel them taking out my tumor and it is kind of weird. Love, Fran”

all the best,

Jo Ellen Quint

You are truly amazing. I have chills reading your blog. Continuing to pray always 🙂

Debby Prum

Fran: prayed for you on and off through the night from about 2:00 am on. Thinking about you and praying now.

Jean DePiro

I agree with Debbie R…..if there is one person that would be blogging during their own brain surgery, it’s YOU! I’ve been up since 5:30am surrounding you in prayer (and as you know – I’m NOT a morning person!). You have MANY of us prayer warriors surrounding you today. SCIENCE, baby….SCIENCE! Much love and De Colores!

Janis Jaquith

Holding you WAY up in the Light, Fran! xoxox

Kathleen Caldwell

Be still and know…
Holding you and Marshall close in prayer these last few weeks, and especially today.

Debbie Rondeau

You are just so unbelievable!! Only you would be able to be awake, and blog during brain surgery. What a super strong woman of God you are!! What a role model for others, “I can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me!!”
Love you lots, big hugs, Debbie

Pat Crawford

Dear Fran….

You are FREAKING AMAZING!!!! My candle is lit and all of us, Mike, Megan and I are holding you in prayer and love! Although I don’t have the inside on the word, I am screaming SCIENCE!!!!

Love and hugs are with you!
Pat Crawford


Dear Fran: During the prayers of the faithful at last evening’s Mass, the reader said “for those awaiting surgery”. And the absolutely packed congregation answered ” Lord have mercy”. Interesting that I had never heard that particular request before, and how pertinent! At that moment I thought, wow! This huge congregation is praying with us for Fran! God bless you. He is certainly with you and we are too, in spirit.

Pat Laurenz

Praying hard and keeping you in my heart especially today

Maria Nootbaar

Hi Fran… I have been quietly praying for you since I heard the news. Praying even more today… May grace and peace be yours in abundance!


Rob Michel

Praying for you, your family and your surgical team ALL DAY today. Peace..

Amy King

You are amazing…..continued prayers and have asked all my prayer warriors to join me….including all those giving you the support and love you need through this journey! I know you are going to do this well – I keep reflecting on my (SMA Class of 1984) Baccalaurette Mass and how the clear notes of your trumpet echoed through the church and filled me with awe. I am wishing that same music to accompany you today through the surgery! HUGS!

Kathy Erskine

Still holding you in the light!


As in the Gaelic Blessing
May God hold you in the palm of His hand.


[…] My neurosurgeon has given me permission to try to blog from my own surgery.  This means that while I am awake during my surgery (which will be about five hours, during which I will be awake for 45 minutes or an hour), I can send a message or two out to Marshall in the waiting room.  He will then text my message to Nick Stone with Charlottesville SEO Web Development, who has been extremely kind in helping me set up my blog, and to whom I am very grateful.  Nick will post what I say on my blog –… Read more »

Praying along with so many others.


I’m with you and Marshall in spirit. Sorry can’t be there in person but have the flu, and last thing I want to do is infect him, you, or loved ones. Hang in there. You are almost thru the belly of the beast and will come out feeling so much better than when you entered it.

Vicky Robinson

We’re with you in spirit, Fran! Love and prayers for you and your family, the Robinsons

Ricardo Padron

You’re very much in our thoughts, Fran!

Jennifer Elvgren

I’ve been up since 5, praying for you, for your surgeon. Love you!

Anne Marie

Science! I will yell it for you! xo

Ann Haywood Leal

You can make me smile at the oddest of times, Fran! I’m with you, girl! Sending prayers for you and that surgeon!

Eileen Beiter

Fran, You and your family will be in my thoughts and prayers constantly today and in the coming days.

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