Dec 22, 2017 Latest post:
Nov 18, 2018
To give a little back story of this journey we are on...
Sunday, October 1, 2017 while driving home from a mini girls weekend in Stillwater with my incredible high school friends, three of us were in a car accident. Jenn Ellering (driver), me in the passenger seat and Anne Hoeschen in the middle back seat were traveling west on I-94 just past Monticello when I saw a huge tire/wheel assembly that detached from an east bound semi trailer flying sideways through the air heading right for Jenn's windshield. I remember having enough time to think 3 words as I saw the tire: 'GOD HELP US!' and then impact. After the tire hit and took out the front of Jenn's car, the hood flew up covering the view out of the windshield, the front and passenger side air bags deployed and we continued traveling down the interstate doing donuts (not something I would recommend!) As we started doing these circles right after impact - I hear Anne's calm voice from the back seat saying the Our Father: 'Our Father, Who art in Heaven, hallowed be Thy name. Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven...' I remember not saying it out loud but praying silently with her. And just as she finished saying this prayer - the car came to a stop safely on side of the road still on all 4 tires out of the way of any traffic. In some amazing way - we did not get hit by any other traffic and remarkably the car did not roll with as many times as we went around in circles. We all surprisingly walked away from this impact that totaled out Jenn's car... maybe a little shaken up... and a little bruised. I probably ended up with the most noticeable bruise as I believe when the rearview mirror became detached from the windshield it hit me in my left eye area. I sported a pretty nice bruiser for 3-4 weeks. I also did have some bruising to my right leg and one spot on my left leg right above my knee... that bruise above my knee is what led us on this next journey we are currently on.
After the accident I went to the chiropractor to help get readjusted from the impacted: neck, back, etc... and after a couple weeks was feeling pretty good except this ache I couldn't get rid of in my left upper knee area. The chiropractor continued to try a few different things but it seemed like it kept getting worse - so he thought it was best to refer me to an orthopedic doctor to have an MRI and see if I have a tear anywhere. We met with ortho, had the MRI and received the results. Good news was no tear in any ligaments, tendons, etc... but the scan showed an extensive bone tumor in the lower left femur bone. We were then referred onto a bone tumor doctor at the University of MN, Dr. Ogilvie. We met with him on a Wednesday and he scheduled the biopsy for the next day. They made an incision on the outside of my knee in order to remove a sample of the tumor inside the bone. Hence the crutches I was sporting - the knee, bone, and joints in that area were a little angry and walking on it posed some issues... but it is healing nicely. We received the results of the biopsy the following Thursday and to all of our surprise - it came back as lymphoma. Dr. Ogilvie's nurse scheduled a fully body PET scan the following Monday as lymphoma generally doesn't start in the bone. We needed to figure out if or where else it was. We were also referred to Dr. Skubitz, an oncologist, the next day (Tuesday) to go over the results of the PET and make a plan moving forward. We met with Dr. Skubitz Tuesday after the PET scan and found out more about my situation - besides being in the bone there is extensive involvement throughout the abdomen. Because of the complexity and aggressive nature of this cancer - Dr Skubitz actually referred us to another colleague who specializes more in this type of lymphoma and felt that would be a better fit for my situation. So we set up an appointment with Dr. Sachs for that Thursday, Dec. 14th. She actually reviewed my information prior to our first visit, called me Wednesday (the day before the appointment) and talked a few things through and said we will talk more tomorrow. In that little phone conversation - she offered HOPE - the first time in this journey! She told us that I would be admitted to the hospital as soon as possible - Friday, December 15th - to start treatment as we need to get on this very aggressive form of lymphoma that is intruding my body...
Diagnosis: High grade B cell lymphoma with double hit (C-MYC and BCL2)