It’s been three months since Maria Menounos had surgery to remove a benign meningioma brain tumor, and the television host says despite some lingering symptoms, she’s getting better every day.
“Overall, I feel so lucky to be functioning and to be almost normal and to not have cancer,” the 39-year-old told TODAY in her first live interview since the surgery. Menounos said she still has a hard time chewing on her right side and gets dizzy if she moves her head too quickly — but those were small issues compared to what her mother is going through.
Her mom, Litsa, has stage 4 brain cancer. “It’s a process. And right now, she’s stable and doing well…It’s an emotional ride,” said Menounos.
The former host of E! News also said she’s been extremely lucky to have the support of her fiancé, Keven Undergaro, who was on set with Menounos. “He’s been unbelievable. The man has not left my side,” she said of her partner of 19 years.
Menounos, who is taking a break from her television career, was diagnosed with a brain tumor in February after suffering from dizziness, slurred speech and headaches. She underwent a 7-hour surgery to remove a golf ball-sized brain tumor on June 8, her 39th birthday.
Menounos said her journey has given her a whole new outlook on life.
“I’m just so much calmer I think because I just see things so differently now. I think being still is so important,” she said. “…I did see this all as a gift. I did shift everything into positives throughout this whole journey and I think that’s really important because we are all going to have really hard times in life. It’s how we respond, how we react, how we shift to see the good. Because out of every bad thing, something good comes if you see it, if you open your mind to it.”