I’ve known Alicia Gomes for the better part of a year now. She’s one of those people that always makes everything more fun. She, because of injury, didn’t get to train for the Games like she needed to, so she decided she’d just have fun and cheer as loud as possible for all the other Outlaw girls. You can actually see her in the background, during the Clean Ladder, going absolutely crazy when Elisabeth stands up with 235#. When everyone returned from Pendleton; she ran over, gave me a high-five, and explained that she was giddy because she had never run more than 3 miles in her life and she couldn’t believe she completed the event. Best. Attitude. Ever.
A few weeks ago I texted Alicia to see how her training was going. She responded with something that almost made me drop my phone. She said, “Not so well, I’ve got a large tumor in my face and I’ve got to take it easy until I have surgery.” Clearly this put training to the back of my mind, but a few days later she sent me this:
That’s a 210# Jerk, and a PR, while she was “taking it easy”. The celebration after the lift also gives you a pretty good picture of Alicia’s personality. Best. Attitude. Ever.
Yesterday Alicia sent me a text letting me know her tumor wasn’t cancerous, and the surgery went well. She said she had a pretty gruesome incision, and I—of course—asked for pictures. I also asked her to write a little something about what had happened so I could share it with you all. Alicia will be back soon, and she will be making everything more fun wherever she goes. Recover quickly, Gomez—we’ve got unfinished business.
Basically what happened is I found a bump on my jaw last December. At first the doctors thought it was a swollen gland and no big deal. I went into a hospital in Boston because I had been getting chronic sinus infections and asked the doctors there if they knew what the bump was. It had not gone away and it was May. They sent me to a specialist, for a biopsy and an MRI. The results came back as atypical cells. They said I should get surgery because they didn’t know what the lump was and there was a chance it was cancerous. They thought it was in or on my parotid gland.
The bump was growing and causing pain in my face and jaw. There’s a facial nerve that runs threw your parotid gland and if it is compromised I could wake up without being able to smile ever again. Basically, my face would fall. This made me super nervous, but I had to get the surgery done. When they went in the tumor was wrapped around that nerve inside my parotid gland and also embedded in my jaw muscle. They got the entire tumor out without compromising the nerve. YEAAA! And, it wasn’t cancerous, double YEAAA! And, now I am recovering and am not able to do any heavy lifting or running for 2 weeks. Booo! That’s pretty much it in a nutshell.