So, I think I have been holding out on you a little bit on the second half of the story. Honestly, I think I feel like I have told the story so many times that people are sick of it and could probably tell it as well as Justin or I could. So, I will give you the reader’s digest version and leave it up to you if you want more details 🙂
I think I left you right before we were give the “diagnosis” of lymphoma. So, Justin had surgery on a Monday and as we were prepping to go home on that following Wednesday the hematologist came into the room and said that it looked like he had an “unconfirmed” diagnosis of Non-Hodgkins Follicular Lymphoma – he said that typically they do a watch and wait plan at first and someone from his office would call us in October (at this point it’s the beginning of August) and then he said “do you have any questions?”…this was literally 3 minutes after he walked into the room and we were still in shock, I think. He handed me a bunch of papers on lymphoma and told us to have a nice day. Gee thanks.
After our not-so-great experience with this doctor, we decided to change doctors and check out the University of Michigan’s Cancer Center. The doctor we ended up with was amazing and made the entire experience as comfortable as possible. He answered our questions and made sure we understood everything that was going on and we felt like he was always honest with us, which was important.
Long story short, the week after Thanksgiving Justin started chemotherapy, a lot earlier than both the doctors and we thought. Chemotherapy is one of the scariest and most emotionally (and physically, obviously) exhausting experiences we have ever had. After a second unsuccessful attempt at getting the original medicine to get into his system, they declared Justin allergic to one of the medications (scariest day of my life) and changed his treatment plan to a more traditional chemotherapy.
In April Justin finished his last chemotherapy treatment and in June his tests and bone marrow biopsy came back without a sign of cancer. He is not cancer free – he will always have lymphoma and will most likely have to battle it again in as little as three years but he is currently in remission and feeling great. We’re just happy to have the opportunity to get our lives back to normal.
This is undoubtedly the “reader’s digest” version of the story, but honestly at this point the little details that I remember aren’t as important as the fact that right now, he is feeling well and the treatment, as traumatic as it is, did what it was supposed to do.
|Justin and his sister, Jaime at his “No More Cancer Birthday Party”!|