As most of you have heard by now, there's been some bad news in our family. Mike has been diagnosed with cancer.... which explains why there hasn't been a blog entry in a while. We've been busy with doctor's appointments, CT scans, blood work, biopsies, X-rays and even a four-night stay in the hospital for surgery.
That's the bad news. The good news is that we're all doing OK. Mike is feeling well, and upbeat and ready to kick this cancer to the curb. He's still working full steam ahead and even convinced a nurse that he be given the go-ahead to drive, despite orders not to after surgery...
It's hard for us being so far away from our family and friends. I hope to use this site to keep everyone posted about the latest news.
But first, a little of the background info:
Mike had a lump in his neck when we were on our trip to West Virginia a couple months ago. He went to have it checked out, and at first, was diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma. The doctor told him he would probably have to have chemo but could be in remission by year's end.
It wasn't great news, but we were coping.
Then the results of the surgical biopsy came back, and on April 29, we first heard the phrase carcinoma of unknown primary. What does that even mean? It's pretty rare and it's a cancer where doctors can't find where it started, just where it has spread. In Mike's case, it has spread to the lymph nodes in his neck and as we found out from a surgery this weekend, a few spots in his chest/lung.
The overall prognosis for this type of cancer isn't great -- but what Mike has going for him is that it is confined to his neck/chest area, that he doesn't have any symptoms and that it's not in his liver or pancreas. The treatment plan will be chemo, we think. We are going to the Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa tomorrow to meet with a specialist for a second opinion/consult.
We're nervous but hopeful. Mike is ready to get started with treatment so he can get back to the good stuff, like pillow fights with Julia and cannonballs into the pool.
So, for now, keep us in your prayers. And I will keep you posted.