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Actress Wendi Lou Lee, who’s best known for playing “Baby Grace” Ingalls on the hit NBC historical drama “Little House on the Prairie,” discussed how her faith helped her get through a brain tumor diagnosis several years ago.
Lee described her experience in her new memoir, “Red Tail Feathers: Dare to Discover the Beauty of Grace,” which is coming out August 13.
“This book was like a big therapy session after brain surgery,” Lee, who had the procedure in 2015, told Fox News Digital. “I felt like I had to look back on my life through a different lens. And I saw grace in a different way. I defined it in a different way. And I felt God changed my perspective.”
The “Little House” star said she started getting “crazy headaches” that persisted.
“I started to think that maybe I was going a little crazy,” Lee said. “Maybe I was overdramatizing something. I was going through that battle where you’re just doubting what you think you’re feeling for a long time. I was at the doctor every week. I go to the doctor maybe once a year, so this was very strange.”
“[My doctor] finally ordered the brain scan,” she said, which confirmed the tumor. “I don’t know why we didn’t order the brain scan earlier, but I was just listening to my doctor and trusting my doctor and not thinking, ‘Oh yeah, I have a brain tumor.’ I wasn’t going there. And she didn’t go there. And then, all of a sudden, that’s what it was.”
Lee said she was actually “relieved” to finally have a diagnosis. “I’m a little scared, especially … for my family. … I had an 8-year-old and an 11-year-old at the time, and they really needed me. … [But] this peace just came over me, knowing that I had a road to walk on. I could do it trusting God, or I could do it not trusting God. I chose to trust that this was the path I was supposed to walk on.”
The actress went on to describe how her “very faithful close walk with God” helped her get through brain surgery. “I have been a believer my whole life,” she said. “I was raised in the church, and it’s just a part of who I am. But there’s something that happens when you go through something really hard that just brings you to a different level. It makes you cling to God in a way that you never knew that you could. It was an eye-opening feeling of ‘I do need God more than I ever knew that I needed him.’”
The “Little House” actress also said she thinks of her suffering as a “privilege” rather than a burden.
“What a privilege [it is] to get to walk this road and learn what I’ve learned and grow so close to God in the process.’ I knew God was going to do something with this,” she said.
“And I felt privileged that He would choose me to do this. I woke up from surgery and said, ‘This is the best day of my life.’ Not just that I woke up, but that God was writing this different story in my life. And He was going to let me use it to hopefully bring him glory and to live my life in a different way.”