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My Cancer Story

I was diagnosed on April 23 2015 with Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma. This site is dedicated to my story so that my family and friends can follow my progress to success.

Latest journal entry

My 2 year update with my oncologist.....

Today was a very important day, I met with my oncologist to get the results from last week’s scan.  I cannot believe it has been 2 years since my stem-cell transplant used to combat that vicious cancer infestation living in my chest.   Every time I go to this clinic I remember the first time I went there, I left in an ambulance.  I all but collapsed in pain from the tumor pressing on my heart.  Worrying where my life was going and how long it would last.   I could go on and on with memories, stories, feelings, sounds and worries.  But, no amount of sadness or pain can change the past, and anxiety won’t change my future. That was a lesion I practiced for 3 long years. 
 
When I arrived today they started with my usual vitals and questions and the nurse asked me if I had a biopsy last week?!?  Um, NO!! I just had my CT scan!!  She was a bit confused and just said OK.  Yep, that put the good vibes to rest!! LOL.
 
My doctor walks in with 2 other doctors and asked if it was OK for them to participate.  I agreed, did not change the results, right?  She asked how I was doing, how I felt, how I felt physically, fatigue and such.  The last time I was asked these same questions was when I relapsed.  She mentioned how much weight I lost (50 Lbs) and asked if I tried or had issues keeping it up.  Ok, Panic mode now.  I told her yes, I have been working hard on dumping the weight I gained in treatment and was in the best shape of my life.
 
She said well that’s because you ARE!  You are cancer free!!!!!!!!!
 
I damn near cried, I could feel my eyes swell up and I just burst out in a happy laugh.  All that worry is GONE!
 
We chatted about memories and she gave me a HUGE hug and told me to go live life! 
 
I am now done with the University of Minnesota and will return to my normal primary/oncologist at Regions.  
 
I am done to only 1 scan per year and maybe no more after that and I am also off all my medications.
 
I did have 1 low thyroid function and they are going to monitor it in 6 months, the radiation may have nicked them and eventually I might need to be on a hormone pill. BIG DAMN DEAL, I can handle that!!
 
Also, I am no longer needing to wear my medical bracelet since my immune system has recovered, I always wore a black band on my right hand that mandated irradiated blood type A+, no more! I received my last 5 immunization shots today.  I am finally protected by a functioning immune system.
 
I am also choosing to finally put away my #gradystrong bands, the time has come, and I am officially putting this behind me. Seeing people wear them always gave me hope, lifted my spirit that someone was wearing it just for me.  You can take yours off now, I am however having a ring with a green stone made that I will wear in leu of my band as to not forget everything I went through and those that helped me and my family. 
 
Sadly, I wish mom was here for this day, I know we all wish someone was here to see something special in our lives but for me this was different, I know it would have settled her heart knowing I was OK.  I wanted her to know it was over for me and I would live.  Sadly, her cancer took her before she knew how the story would end. I miss her every day and will for a long time.  Sorting out her belongings and donating them is really helping.  She would be happy knowing her items are helping others.
 
I can finally focus on my long-term life, I am going to do what makes me happy and my family happy. I am going to try new things, live a little, and be grateful every day that I wake up.
 
Thank you for all the support, food, donations, benefit, prayer, phone calls, bracelets, check-ins, cards, kid care and most of all, listening to my story.
 
Grady

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