Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Let the Fight Begin

Hello Friends and Family. I know many are wondering if I have vanished from the blogging world or why I have not posted in so long. Well, life completely changed for us overnight. This post is going to be a bit long, but I hope you will all take a minute and read it. I wish I was a great blog writer and could tell you everything that is in my heart. Since I am not a great blog writer you will have to hang in there with me.

Before the story begins I want all of you to know that the last two weeks I have learned so much. We have been given a major trial which I will explain in detail (probably more detail than you want to know). As we go through this trial I want to be able to help anyone that is experiencing the same trial, but at the same time help you prevent this in your life. I truly believe that LIFE is a JOURNEY. Sometimes the path on the journey feels like it's all up hill but in the end the journey will be worth it. So this is just a long uphill hike for us. However we fully plan to get to the top of this mountain.

This story is about my dear husband and eternal companion Fred. Several months ago he said to me that he was having a little trouble having a bowel movement. I told him to increase his fluid intake and watch for blood each time he goes to the bathroom (FYI: blood in the bowel movement is a sign of cancer). If things don't improve then we probably should have it checked out by an MD. Well the first of the year rolled around, we went on our trip to New Zealand that we had planned. Once we returned from New Zealand time quickly passed especially with tax season and before we knew it Spring was here.

Fred continued to experience the same symptoms and noticed the bowel movement was getting a little more narrow, but never any blood. So we got him into see a general practice MD. While doing an exam the doc did the fun rectal exam. With that exam Fred was in severe pain. As I looked at the doctor and said to him "He should not be in that much pain" the doctor agreed with me and said we need to have a colonoscopy a little earlier in life than we expected.

So we went for the very fun colonoscopy. They gave Fred some fun drugs and off to dream land he went. I have to say he is kinda funny waking up. Well, I guess you could say it was at that point that our journey uphill began. The colonoscopy showed rectal cancer. The colon looked great, but to make sure there was not other masses outside the colon we were then sent for a CT scan of the abdomen. So two days later we went for the CT scan. The scan showed that the cancer had already spread to the liver and bottom of the lungs. WOW, at that point you just say is this really happening or is this a dream. Frustrating thing for Fred is that he feels great (thank goodness).

From there we were referred to a rectal surgeon. As we met with the rectal surgeon he suggested that we pack our bags and take the next flight to Houston where we can be treated at MD Anderson one of the best cancer centers in the USA. He informed us that they could do surgery on the liver, lungs and rectum all at once.

As much as I appreciated him being very aggressive I had to say "Slow down and lets looks at all our options or a second opinion before you start slicing and dicing. That is a huge surgery that will be impossible for anyone to recover from or survive. Not to mention that we do an amazing job here in UT" Well after the doctor quickly figured out that Fred had a wife that was going to put up a fight he quickly calmed down. He then referred us to a very specialized Oncologist. Our Oncologist is amazing and we know we are in the best hands we could ever be in. I have to say that I was feeling so glad that I have medial knowledge to be able to make these drastic decisions.

In between seeing the rectal surgeon and the Oncologist we were sent for a PET scan. No a PET scan is not for animals-hahah. Just for your knowledge base it's like a CT scan. Difference is a PET scan measures the metabolic activity in the body like blood flow, oxygen in the organs and tissues. You are given a high glucose drink. The sugar in that drink is attracted to cancer cells. Then you are injected with a radioactive medication. The medication is then tagged by the sugar and lights up the cancer cells on the monitor. In a nut shell Fred was glowing. Unfortunately the PET scan showed 8 masses on each side of the lungs.

BTW if you are wondering. Yes we are getting use to bad news by this point. Anyway, once we met with the Oncologist he made a treatment plan that is very individualized. I feel very good about this treatment plan. We will go in every two weeks for a treatment. Basically the Chemo treatments are 3-4 hours long. One of the medications runs over 48 hours so we come home on a pump that Fred wears in a fanny pack. We plan to be very functional and carry out life as usual. We pray the side effects will be minimal and most of all pray that the chemo will shrink those cancer cells and make those mean vicious cells die. We may still need to do surgery or radiation in the future but we will cross that bridge at that point. We started our treatment yesterday. So far we have had minimal side effects. The next few days will be interesting and we are fighting strong to get through this. We are so grateful for the small miracles we have everyday.
So many of you have asked what we need or have offered to do anything for us. I thank all of you for that. You have no idea what that means your us. Your friendship, support and love is so appreciated. Right now all we need is lots of PRAYERS. Trust me we can feel all of you praying for us. It's very humbling when you know so many people are praying and thinking of you. I thank all of you from the very bottom of my heart.
I have promised many to keep you updated. I think I will post the updates here on this blog. As you go through something like this you find many ways to simplify your life. Therefore I don't think I can keep two blogs updated so I plan to just put quick post here as things arise. I will tag these posts as "Kankamp Journey" so you can search the posts easily.
Thanks so much.


Rudy Rukus said...

Love you Lynette. Hang in there. We are praying for you daily!!

David and Kate said...

Cancer is such a horrible thing... it changes life so fast. Glad you have a doc and a plan that you like. We're praying for you and your family!

Britney said...

Hang in there, and God bless you and your family. You're all in our prayers!! Love you.

Shaira said...

Your family is included in my prayers. God bless.

Tiffanie said...

Our thoughts and prayers are with you!

Dana Rae Bennett said...

Lynette- I cry every time I think about you and your family. All I can say is I am so sorry. Cancer is such an ugly word. My husband was diagnosed with cancer in the fall. Lucky for us it was prostate which is the most curable. However, the emotions, stress, and fears aren't any less. My heart goes out to you and I will continue to pray that you will have the stength to carry on. I know you will be blessed. The experiences you will face and the blessings you will be blessed with are undescribable. I love you Lynette and I want you to know that my thoughts, prayers, and heart is with you through this journey. Dana Rae

Cindy said...

Lynette - I just signed in to update my blog and saw your blog post in my reader! I can not believe this! I'm sure you can't either! Please send our thoughts and our love to Fred. Ronnie is going to be so shocked when I tell him. I will be praying vigilantly for a complete cure for Fred. We still have many places to go and tours to take together! We always have the best adventures with you two! :)
Stand fast in your faith Lynette! We will be checking on you two!

Much love, The Dennings

Jackie said...

You and Fred our in our thoughts and prayers. If there is anything you need please call upon Scott and me.

Cindy said...

Lynette, I love and appreciate your friendship so much. You and your family are in our prayers and thought constantly. Please let me know if you need anything.
Love always,

Karen Pedersen said...

I know it was not easy to type this post or to share this with everyone, but by doing so you gave all of us the opportunity to see into your hearts and know specifically what is going on so we can give detailed requests for the blessings you need in our prayers. You know I love you, Fred and your family. The Pedersens are here for you in any way that we can be. FIGHT!

Becky said...

It goes without saying we are thinking of, and praying for, you and your family.

Nicole Norris said...

Fred is so lucky to have you by his side. I know you will tackle this challenge with gusto! Your family is so amazingly strong. Thank you for sharing your journey with us.

Scrubbybubbles(sue) said...

HI lynette. My name is sue. I found your blog through the chic chick media widget. I just joined with them today and was perusing some of the links. Wow...sounds like you both are surely on that uphill trek. I will definitely pray for your hubby. BTW-I think you did an excellent job with the blog post and the pictures are beautiful. Thankyou for sharing your story. God Bless.

Helen Onulak said...

Lynette - thank you for sharing what's going on. Sending many PRAYERS and GREAT BIG HUGS!

I know prayer is powerful. We asked for and received many prayers when my father had his heart attack. The doctors told us later that they felt they lost him numerous times. We were blessed through all the prayers to have Dad for many more years.

Love ya!

Ganine said...

Oh wow.. your family is in our prayers.

Rosanna Hope said...

Hi Lynette, I came to your blog as someone had come over to my new Babybonbons blog today from your site.

I just have to leave you a note to tell you that about 12 years ago I was diagnoised with Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia. At the time it had a very poor outcome, but that was over 12 years ago. I was in a special trial about 3 years into my treatments and I have been in remission every since on a special drug Gleevec, which neither I nor my doctors dreamed about at the time of my diagnosis. Daily there are so many new drugs that are really miracle drugs appearing on the market and in trials . It sounds like you are very proactive so Keep searching these out. I am going to keep you in my thoughts and if I can be of any further help please email me at
Hugs to you and Hubby, Rosanna Hope


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