Where have you been? Where are you going? And why?
Cancer Update #1: The Expedition Begins
August 3, 2007Posted by on
To those reading, I assume you are a friend or family member caring enough about us to be here. Thank you. A new, good friend reminded me last night that it’s not just me that has cancer, but both Shannon and me. The Bible is clear: once married, the two have become one flesh. We are facing this together. We are trusting God’s goodness together. And we need your prayers together. Here is the story thus far.
Thankfully, I had to have a physical done as apart of my commercial driver’s license requirements last January (in order to drive the baseball team around in the bus). I went in to see the doctor, expecting nothing less than the routine outcome. As a healthy and athletic 24-year old, I really didn’t fear much. The doctor found a small, hard mass on the bottom of my right testicle. He wasted no time in sending me over to a specialist.
A few days later I found myself undergoing an ultrasound, checking for any signs of cancer. They also traced my blood for any signs. I was asked to return three months later for a follow-up ultrasound. The urologist was eager to see whether the mass had grown. I returned in April and repeated the routine. The results matched those from January, leading us to believe that the mass was simply a build-up of tissue that had hardened. The doctor wanted to be sure, though. So an MRI was undergone. This was in late May as Shannon was graduating from DTS and we were getting ready for the summer. Our trip out West was quickly approaching. The spring had been a great one, and the mass of tissue was barely on our minds.
The doctor called on June 11th, one day before our trip, and said I needed to come in to talk. Oh, great. Not only did that mean something was wrong, but our flight was to depart the next evening. I asked whether the meeting could wait thirty days, and he determined it could as long as I got in to see him urgently upon our return.
On July 24th, just ten days ago, I walked into his office and he delivered the tough news. There were two spots on the mass that were inconclusive. The only way to know whether they were cancerous was to operate…immediately. The procedure would look like this: if the testicle did contain any bit of cancer, it would be removed. If there was no trace of cancer, the mass of tissue would simply be removed, but the testicle would remain.
Two days later, at 6 AM, Shannon and I strolled into the hospital. On a lighter note, the last thing I remember before blacking out was trying to hide my smile from the nurse after she gave me the “happy” medicine. Once I woke up from the anesthetic, I was wheeled into my room where Shannon and my brother-in-law Steve were waiting. Their grave faces revealed the news: cancer. The testicle had been removed and we would meet with the doctor within a week to discuss the future.