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Daniel’s Story

Hi everyone! Thanks for visiting our web page.

This is our story...

PS - We're using this website as a means to communicate with family and friends. Having said that, the 'donations' link on the right hand side of the page isn't in any way connected with me. Please disregard it as this web page isn't a solicitation for donations.

Well, to make a long story short, I have cancer.

To make a short story longer, my leg has been hurting for the past month and a half, so I finally went to the doctor and got an MRI of my leg.

The MRI came back showing a large tumor on the femur of my left leg. The doctors diagnosed me with a type of bone cancer called osteosarcoma. It's a pretty fun word to say, but not as much fun to have. Go figure.

So that's the story. I'll try to keep you all posted on my visits to the doctor so you can follow what's happening. I'd really appreciate your comments and encouragement in the guestbook. Prayers are always needed as well.

We know this will be a difficult time, but with the support of family, friends, and lots of help from the Lord, we know this will be a positive experience and we'll learn so much during the course of it.

Love you all,

Daniel and Melanie Hedlund

PS - While this web page is through Caring Bridge, I'm not in any way connected with them. We're merely using this as a means to communicate with family and friends. Having said that, the 'donations' link on the right hand side of the page isn't in any way connected with me. Please disregard it as this web page isn't a solicitation for donations.

Latest Journal Update

Update time!

Hey guys!

It's been 5 months since I've written any kind of an update, so I figure it's time.  I suppose by now, you've come to find my irregularity regular.  If that makes sense...

Life is going very well for Melanie and I.  I should start off by saying that I had a scan three weeks ago and the doctors found no new growth in my lungs!  This is an incredibly positive thing and we were so excited to hear that great news!  As always, there are spots that show up on my lung scans, but until we know what they are, we'll just continue to watch them closely.  For all we know, it's just scar tissue, dead cancer, or something that's always been there.  If, at any point, on future scans it grows, then we'll know it's cancer and we'll go after it. 

We also took an x-ray of my leg to see how that's healing.  Short story: it's not.  My bone is trying so hard to grow into the donor bone they put in four years ago, but it's just not taking like the doctors want it to.  So we'll keep praying and hoping that it happens.  But if it hasn't grown in by summer 2012, we'll probably just cut it off.  Just kidding.  That's a bit dramatic.  What we'll actually do is have them replace my lower femur with a rod and give me a false knee.  We've been wanting to stay away from that as long as possible, but I'm at the point where I don't even care anymore.  I'm just really anxious to get off of my crutches/cane and walk.

Speaking of my cane, we're studying the Old Testament this year in my classes.  In one of my classes today, we were talking about Moses and his staff when it turns into a snake, and one of my students asked me if I could do that with my cane.  I told them I could.  For some reason, they didn't believe me.  So I'm currently trying to find a way to make it happen.  If anyone knows of a cane that will turn into a snake, could you let me know?

On a completely different subject, during the past year, I've been working on creating a product that envelops my experience over the past four years.  In full disclosure, my dad is the one that hired me to develop something like this for some of his leadership classes he teaches.  I came up with a curriculum called the Ten Mindsets.  As I went back and looked at the past four years, I was able to identify several different mindsets that helped me get through.  For each mindset, I produced a short video.  I've recently finished all of them and so far the only people who have seen them are my family.  So I'm a bit nervous about posting these links, but I'd really like your feedback about what you think.
The mindsets are below with the YouTube link to watch the video associated with that mindset.

Intro -

Mindset 1: Life Isn't Fair -

Mindset 2: Turn Around -

Mindset 3: Life Isn't Fair -

Mindset 4: Look Upward -

Mindset 5: Be At Odds With The Odds -

Mindset 6: Find Strength In Numbers -

Mindset 7: Get Mental -

Mindset 8: Laugh A Little -

Mindset 9: Control What You Can -

Mindset 10: Look For Blessings -

Another way to watch them is to just got to Youtube and type 'dphedlund' in the search bar.  All of my videos will come up.

They're by no means professional or HD quality, but I've enjoyed making them and it's been interesting for me to go back and analyze everything I've learned.  Hindsight is 20/20.

I would really appreciate any ideas on how I could make these better or in what ways I could use these in the future.

Also, one more favor.  (And this is the last!)  I applied for this contest a while back called "The Search for Incredible" and I'm one of the 10 U.S. Finalists.  Now people are able to vote for which of the ten stories they think is the most incredible.  The winner will go on to compete against other countries.  If you would be willing to click on the link below and vote for me (just scroll through the pictures until you find the bald guy with the cute girl at his side), I would really appreciate it. 

Here's the link:

Everything else is going well here.  Melanie is still working as a Medical Assistant to an Orthopedic Surgeon and she enjoys her work.  We've graduated to just plain, boring folk.  We rather like it.  We've had enough excitement for a while!

Your continued prayers and support have helped more than words can adequately express, and the love and appreciation we feel for you is equally as difficult to express.  Just know that we feel incredibly blessed to have experienced the outpouring of love that we have during the last four years.  As we celebrate our four year wedding anniversary in November, and the four year anniversary of my cancer diagnosis in December, we wouldn't trade either of those anniversary dates for anything.  We are better people because of both.

Much love.

Daniel and Melanie