A little Background and the Story So Far…..

February 18, 2012

Middle aged guy living in Southern Indiana with the Wife of 33 years, QueenBuffness..
3 grown kids
And 4 stupid Dogs.
There’s also a few chickens and some barn cats running around outside at any given time.
I’ve been an ER Nurse for the last 18 years, EMT and US Army Medic prior to that.
Which gives me just enough knowledge and experience to scare the hell out of myself thinking about all of the, “What if’s” on receiving a Diagnosis of Cancer.

I have another website at, http://www.yourcrazyuncle.blogspot.com where legions of fans eagerly hang on my every word.
OK, that’s not true.
It’s just another little Blog nobody ever heard of like millions of other folks have.
I just thought I should keep things separated and just chronicle where this new road I’m on goes here.

Where is that road going? Beats the hell out of me.
A look back to where it all started.

It started about 6 weeks ago with a simple bellyache I didn’t think much about.
Like a lot of folks, I get a little Gastric Reflux and have taken, Zantac for a few years for it. So having a bit of a bellyache didn’t seem cause for much concern.
I complained about it to one of the ER docs I work with and he did a quick exam and said he thought I might have an ulcer brewing given the symptoms. He wrote me a couple of prescriptions for some meds and told me to try that and see if it helped and to see my Family Doc if it didn’t get better in a week or 2.

Well, it didn’t get better. Matter of fact, it got a bit worse so I followed his advice and made an appointment to see my Doc.

It’s been about. 5 weeks now since that first visit.
Jennifer, my Doc poked around on my gut and thought that, yes, I may well have an ulcer brewing. She changed my meds around a bit and we set a follow up date for 3 weeks later.

That was Wednesday the 15th of February. 3 days ago.

Now going on through this same time frame, I screwed my low back up. Strained the hell out of it and that problem was enough to overshadow the belly ache most of the time.
I had some leftover pain medicine from surgery on my foot that I started taking that helped with both problems, the belly and the back both and started seeing a ChiroCracker/TheraPissed for the back which has been helping a lot..

But as the back got better, the belly continued to be a nagging problem.
I was watching for any sign of blood in my stool and avoiding spicy foods, alcohol, etc because I didn’t want to stir it up and make it worse.
I was still thinking Ulcer or at worst, Pancreatitis at this time.

That all changed Tuesday night/early Wednesday morning 3 days ago. when I woke up at about 1:30 in the morning with the belly really hurting.

I took 1 of the leftover pain meds and 3-4 hours later went back to bed.
Made the scheduled appointment with the Doc that afternoon and told her what was going on and she decided some more definative testing was in order. An abdominal ultrasound or a CT scan, but she wanted to do some blood work first to help her make a decision on which.
Which is what I did prior to leaving the office.

I had told her about using the leftover pain meds and she said not to feel guilty about it and actually wrote me a prescription for some more if I needed them. I’ve known her for years and never once hit her up for Narcotics so she wasn’t to concerned with any potential abuse problems.

The next morning, Thursday the 16th I got a call from her office telling me to haul ass to the hospital for a Stat CT scan as my lab work was abnormal.
Oh oh. I took a shower and did just that.
I had to drink a couple of big glasses of oral contrast dye mixed in what is supposed to taste like orange Koolaid on a timed schedule prior to the scan. Yummy.
Not terrible but not great tasting stuff you would choose.

at the appointed time, my friend and motorcycle riding buddy, MrT took me to the back, started an IV for injectable dye and we got the scan done.
I went back to the Doctors office after that to pickup some paperwork for an upper endoscopy scope planned for the next day.
The person in charge of the paperwork was at lunch and I was told to come back back at 1pm and get sorted out.
Did a bit of running around and was back at the office at 1.
I singed all the papers and was getting ready to go home when she told me to hang around as the Doc was talking to the Radiologist about my scan.

So they parked me in a room and there I waited for Doc. My Doc was not working, so her partner, Dr Dan came in a few minutes later and I knew right off from looking at his face this was not gonna be good. Dr Dan was 1 of the first people I met when I came here 18 years ago and reading his face wasn’t that difficult.

He had just gotten off the phone with the Radiologist and had a note with the preliminary findings.
Which were not good.

What they found was, a bunch of Lymph nodes enlarged, with an abnormally thick area on the colon and abnormal spots on the Liver that looked like Metastatic lesions.

All I could say was, “Shit. That’s Not What I Wanted to Hear, Doc”.

I can’t imagine having to tell folks bad news like that is much fun and told him that too. What else can ya say?

That was 2 days ago.
Talk about a game changer. Everything suddenly changes and priorities shift immediately.
Emotions go into roller coaster mode and the, “What Next” reflex kicks in.
Like I said, being an ER nurse for as long as I have sends your head into thoughts of, “Dead Man Walking”.
Still don’t have my head wrapped around this whole thing.

Scheduled for a PET scan Monday and a scope up the poop chute Tuesday.
That will answer a lot of questions on where things will go treatment wise.
May need surgery. Chemo for sure.
Next week is gonna suck for sure, but it’s all gonna have to be done if I’m gonna get through this.

Don’t have to like it. Just have to do it.
My Old Man used to say that a lot when I was a kid. Didn’t care to hear that much then, but I know the truth in it.
And that’s what we’re gonna do.

I have know idea where this is all gonna lead yet and probably won’t for awhile. Just gonna have to take it step by step and hope for the best.

So there ya have it.
I’ll hopefully be able to keep this up as we go along.

Later, YerUnk

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8 Responses to “A little Background and the Story So Far…..”

  1. Pickdog Says:

    My prayers are headed your way. May the Great Creator heal you and keep yours safe. You are here for a reason and that has not changed.

    • crazyuncle Says:

      Hi Pick! Your prayers are indeed good to have. I believe that’s one of the reasons my anxiety level has dropped dramatically in the last 24 hours.
      You keep that up, OK?

  2. STEVE BONZAI Says:

    GOOD LUCK, UNK

  3. JSW Says:

    Sorry to hear about this, Unc. It’s going to be a bitch, I know.
    One of my brothers-in-law has been undergoing treatment for a couple of years now, though he’s got a different form. Some days are good, others suck bad, but as you say, What else can you do?
    One of my neighbors is seeing the surgeon Tuesday after going for tests every day the last two weeks. He’s had several different kinds, and his wife has had three or four versions as well. They’re both in their late 70s now, so there’s always hope.
    Gosh, aren’t I just the bearer of happy news? Sorry if I’m so depressing.
    Will be praying for you.

  4. Patricia Says:

    Hey John, Michael told me and we’ve read this. Definitely a hard piece of news to hear! You’ll be in our hearts and prayers from now on. Be strong in spirit, because that’s what you are in the long run–spirit and soul–and remember, you belong to God! I’ve go more roots tincture for your liver next time you drop by…..
    Patty

    • crazyuncle Says:

      Hey Patty, Hopefully, I’ll feel good enough soon to ride the BigBluePlasticMotorcycle your way.
      My spirit and mental hygiene is much better today. I hope I got the shock and surprise out of my system now and can just focus on getting with the program.


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