Remembering all 50 states and reciting them quickly in alphabetical order is not a simple task for most people under ordinary circumstances — but one 24-year-old made it appear so during the most extraordinary of circumstances.

Jayden Zientara, a health care partner at Vanderbilt University Hospital in Nashville, Tennessee, recently underwent brain surgery.

In an interview, she shared her brain surgery journey with Fox News Digital — including her shocking path to a diagnosis and its aftermath. 

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The 24-year-old said it all started with a bad migraine in late Nov. 2023.

“I never get migraines or headaches, so like any other person, I took Ibuprofen and Tylenol, hoping my headache would go away,” she said. 

After another miserable 24 hours, Zientara decided to go to urgent care and see if the doctors there could help address her pain. 

“I was prescribed … sleep meds and headache meds … and was told that if my migraine didn’t go away in the next 24 hours, that I needed to go get a CT scan,” she recalled. 

Two days later, Zientara said the pain had not subsided — so she went to get a scan.

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“After I received the CT, they told me I had a brain mass and needed to get transferred to Vanderbilt for an MRI,” she said.

The MRI showed that Zientara had a brain tumor roughly the size of a baseball — and that she would need surgery to remove it. 

Jayden Zientara

Within a few days, Zientara was in surgery. 

Doctors removed and biopsied her tumor — and confirmed that it was brain cancer. 

“My specific brain tumor is called an astrocytoma, and it’s commonly found in men over 40 and children under two,” she said.

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The rare tumor took doctors about 12 hours to remove, she said.

However, Zientara needed to be awake for part of it so that her brain would be stimulated during surgery. 

Prior to the procedure, Zientara said doctors asked her what they could engage her on during the procedure to stimulate her brain. 

Zientara said the Boston Celtics and her little brother were topics she “could talk about for hours.”

Jayden Zientara during surgery

“I also told them I could list all 50 states in alphabetic order,” she said.

And so, when the health staff asked her about the 50 states during surgery, Zientara began to sing a song while doctors were removing her brain tumor. 

“It’s a song I’ve known since I was young,” she told Fox News Digital. 

She added, “I learned it in elementary school, and I’ve never forgotten it.”

Jayden Zientara post op

Although Zientara said she does not remember being awake during the surgery, she loved seeing the video of herself singing and naming all 50 states. 

The patient’s mom, Jamie Zientara, said she was shocked to see her daughter recite such a thing while undergoing surgery. 

“I knew that there would be some type of video recorded,” she said. 

“The exposure and outpouring of support she has received has been nothing short of amazing.”

“However, I was not expecting that.”

She added, “The exposure and outpouring of support she has received has been nothing short of amazing.”

Since then, Jayden Zientara has been home with her family in Illinois ahead of her upcoming chemotherapy and radiation treatments. 

Jayden Zientara said each of her treatments will last for six weeks, but she’s not afraid of the process. 

“After my first brain surgery, I guess you could say I’m a pro,” she joked. 

Jayden Zientara in surgery

The care worker said her mother has been a huge support to her during this time and she’s grateful for that. 

Zientara also has a GoFundMe page set up to help with medical costs.

Fox News Digital reached out to Zientara’s doctors for further comment.

For more Lifestyle articles, visit www.foxnews.com/lifestyle

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