About Me

Full name: Foong Ming Niang, Yvonne
Birth Date: June 1986
Hometown: Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia
Highest Education: BSc Psychology
Job: Director, Works of Gratitude

Schools Attended with Merit:

1. Upper Iowa University, Malaysia Program
2. Segi College Subang Jaya ( Spring 2007 – Summer 2009)
3. Life College, (January – August 2006)
4. MSC International College. (January – June 2004)
5. Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan Subang Jaya
6. Sekolah Rendah Sri Subang Jaya

Work Experiences:

1. First Published Book, ‘I’m not sick, just a bit unwell’
2. Short Story Contribution to Sherry Cochran’s Late Deafened Book.
3 Freelance Columnist for The Malay Mail. (May – June ’08)
4. Freelance Columnist for YellowPost (Sept ’06 – May ’08)
5. Freelance contributor to various newspapers and magazines.
6. Contributed short stories to Book Project 2 & Write Out Loud by Karen-Ann Theseira.
7. Full-Time Teacher at LCL SmartLearn Preschool. (Dec ’04 – February ’05)

Voluntary Work:

1. Co-founder of Counseling and Psychology in Malaysia.
2. Editorial contributions for Eden Handicap Service Center.
3. Occasional assistance to help individuals with NF raise funds for medical treatments.

Academic Awards:

1. Life College Full Scholarship for Diploma-level study.
2. Segi College FULL Scholarship for Degree-level study.

Other Awards:

1. F&N Outdo-Yourself-Award 2010
2. Her World, ‘Young Achiever 2008′ award.
3. AYA Dream Malaysia, ‘Most Outstanding Youth of the Year Award.

Past Extea Co-Curricular Activities.

1. Figure Skating ‘SkateAsia 2000′ (with merit)
2. Choir (with merit)
3. Karate: Goshin-Ryu. Brown 4.
4 National Level Web Design Competition (with merit)
5. MSSS State Level Squash Tournament. (with merit)
6. Classical Ballet, The Royal School of Dancing, Grade 6.

Hobbies & Interests:

Meditation, Reading, Writing, Sketching, Crafting, Humanitarian Activities,

Member of:

His Sanctuary of Glory Global Ministries

Other Non-Academic Achievements:

1. Raised USD 58,600 for surgery by selling custom designed Heart4Hope t-shirts. The funds were used to pay for surgery to remove a brain tumor and purchase the Auditory Brainstem Implant – the only device that could help me with hearing rehabilitation. This has made me the first A.B.I. user in Malaysia.


Health Facts

If this is your first time reading my blog, it’s not surprising to find my medical history a mouthful. In fact, some long-time friends and readers still do not wholly understand my condition.

To make things easier for everyone, here is a list of my medical history and diagnosis.

Diagnosis
1. Neurofibromatosis Type 2. (July 2002)

Surgeries
1989 – Strabismus eye surgery for Large Combined Hamartoma
August 2002 – Multiple spine tumor removal
April 2003 – Partial Acoustic Neuroma removal – Brain.
September 2004 – Complete Acoustic Neuroma removal – Brain.
October 2006 – Complete Acoustic Neuroma removal. Auditory Brainstem Implant placement- Brain. Jugular Foramen Meningioma debulked.
November 2008 – Decompression of the right optic nerve, Optic Nerve Sheath Meningioma de-bulking.
March 2009 – Gamma Knife radiosurgery treatment of an Optic Nerve Sheath Meningioma.
May 2009 – Surgical removal of an Olfactory Groove Meningioma.
December 2009 – Surgical removal of a Trigone Meningioma at the brain’s Left Lateral Ventricle. The Contralateral Trancallosal Surgical Approach was used successfully.
August 2010 – Fenestration of the left lateral ventricle and implantation of a ventriculo-peritoneal shunt.
October 2011 – Resection of subcutaneous peripheral nerve sheath tumor – right leg.
September 2012 – Resection of scalp tumor.
November 2012 – Resection of multiple Meningioma from the upper thoracic spine.
April 2013 – Resection of a Radial Nerve Schwannoma from my left upper arm.
February 2014 – Resection of a 3cm Schwannoma from my Cervical Spinal Cord at the level of C2-C3.
September 2014 – Resection of a very large Schwannoma from the adductor muscle of my right thigh.

Prognosis
1. Optic Nerve Sheath Meningioma.
2. Under-development of left eyeball and retina, causing small optic nerve.
3. Semi facial palsy.
4. Jugular Foramen Meningioma.
5. Multiple brain tumors.
6. Multiple tumors along cervical, thoracic, and lumbar spine.
7. Multiple peripheral schwannomas.
8. Absence of VIII cranial nerves – the vestibulocochlear nerves.
9. Usage of the Auditory Brainstem Implant to assist hearing.

Doctors involved in my surgical treatments
1. Neurosurgeon Dr. Ashok Asthagiri M. D. (U.S. National Institute of Neurological Disorder and Stroke)
2. Neurosurgeon Dr. Michael Cirivello M. D. (US. NINDS)
3. Neurosurgeon Dr. Gregory P. Lekovic M.D., Ph. D.(House Clinic)
4. Radiation Oncologist Dr. David Huang M. D. (Good Samaritan Hospital)
5. Neurotologist – Dr. Rick A. Friedman MD. PhD. (House Clinic)
6. Neurosurgeon – Dr. Mark Schwartz MD. (House Clinic)
7. Neurosurgeon – Dr. William E. Hitselberger MD. (House Clinic) (past)
8. Neurosurgeon Mr. Johari Siregar Bin Adnan (past)

Hospitals frequently visited
1. General Hospital Kuala Lumpur (past)
2. Assunta Hospital
3. St. Vincent Medical Center, L.A.
4. Tun Hussein Oon Eye Hospital
5. Good Samaritan Hospital L.A.
6. National Institute of Neurological Disorder and Stroke, United States of America.

Physical Limitations
1. Profound deafness.
2. Underdeveloped left optic nerve.
3. Low right visual acuity
4. Right central scotoma
5. Poor balance.
6. Semi facial paralysis.
7. Stiff Right Leg.
8. Slight Back Discomfort.
9. Tinnitus.


13 Comments

  1. Dearest Yvonne,
    Hi, I’m Mable. How are you? A friend fwd-ed me your blog and i’m deeply deeply touched by your strength. I found out that you and I have a few things in common: We both love writing and are writers; like you, I’d study in SMSJ (though many yrs your snr); and discovered the joy in the words of Mitch Albom’s Tuesdays with Morrie.
    And like many others, I wish to help. If you picked up a copy of seventeen magazine, you’d see a column called first person. I’m responsible to find stories for that column and every month, it is really very much a challenge for me to do so. Most of the time, we get stories from the US but as a journalist, i find that there’s nothing else better than a story that hits home from home.
    Would you be interested to write about your story for us?
    I read your story on the Youth2 The Star about your book which will be launched in end Nov/December 05 – it’s a timely coincidence as now, we’re currently working on our December issue.
    It’ll be a great publicity for your book, and a great inspiration for us to run your story.
    If you like to know more about the interview, you can reach me at my email or my mobile. I hope to hear from you soon Yvonne.
    Till then, please take care and God bless.

    Yours truly,
    Mable Tan
    features writer, seventeen magazine
    012 2333 872

  2. Hi there,Had a chance to read through your blog – fascinating stuff! I was actually looking for your e-mail, but I thought I might as well leave you a message here. It was great having you on the show the other day, and you really are a wonderfully brave person. Not just coping, but living life to the fullest despite what fate throws at you, you are really an inspiration and a role model to so many young people. I know perhaps people may look up to me, being 21 and doing what I do, but I personally have to say that you are someone I look up to. Keep it up, and once again, it was such a pleasure to meet you – an honour in fact – and if you ever want that photo, just drop me a line.

    Yours,
    Will Q

  3. Hi,
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  4. Hi there. :) Well i have not much time to read your website content right now :) Just searching for some paypal ralated matter
    because forgot 1 internet payment site that i registered :) Still got a bit cash there :) Not much if cant find it or forgot then it is fine.
    This is how i found your website :)

    Why dont you advertise in the newspaper to get some fund? I mean in malaysia i’m sure a lot of people may help you too right?

    Well how long you been doing this? Seeking for any help to cure your illness? Well i dont know what type of illness because i have a very quick glance in your website only :)

    If you got a will there is always a way. Open out your matter would bring some attention for people to help you.

    Regarding your paypal money why dont you try ikobo.com to accept fun? But most people worldwide especially foreigner prefer / use to paypal :)

    Why dont you get u.s bank so you can directly withdraw your fund? I got a partner who into such a business that incorporating/worldwide bank introduction with a fees.

    Too bad right now i cant help you withdraw money out but later if still nobody help you to withdraw out.

    I will contact you when i can help you withdraw out if that time the money still stuck in there :)

    Ok have to go….:)

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