||In December of 2001 Anna had major Brain Surgery. In fact, two surgeries within a week. The first was to physically place a grid on the surface of her brain. For three days she went through intensive testing. Attached to this grid were many wires, each wire made contact with different regions of Anna's brain. With numerous wires coming out of her head, the doctors would electronically stimulate each wire one by one. When eloquent (important) regions of Anna's brain were stimulated Anna would lose that function. For example when her speech region was stimulated, Anna was unable to speak. After all her testing was complete a "map" was made of the left side of her brain (where the tumor was). This would serve as a guide for the nuero surgeon, so that he would avoid the eloquent areas while attempting to remove the tumor.
The second surgery was an attempt to resect the large tumor in Anna's brain. It took over six hours and the results were minimal. Anna was in intensive care for several days following the surgery. It was a pivotal period. Any signs of right side movement, cognitive response or speech were reasons to rejoice. After some time, Anna seemed to move her right leg. Hours later it appeared her right hand was able to move. Not until the second day of recovery was Anna able to speak. The first word she said... "Strawberry". We're not sure why. The only thing we can think of was that the anesthesiologist used strawberry smelling gas to put her to sleep, maybe it was the last word she heard before surgery? As Anna began to recover more words and rediscover her speech, the word "strawberry" would quite often replace other words. For example, when asking us to turn on the tv she would say "Can you turn on the strawberry". Over time the "strawberry syndrome" subsided. This story inspired Dean, Anna's dad, to write a song. The song... "Strawberry Girl"
Listen to the song "Strawberry Girl"
Watch the Video "Strawberry Girl"