Matthew Bollinger

First post: Mar 29, 2017 Latest post: May 15, 2017
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Dear Family and Friends,

I really am not sure how to begin this journal.  Here goes.....So far 2017 has been not so good to us.  Matt was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer that has spread to his liver.  He has been going through chemo every other week and just completed his 5th round.  He has been handling it really well considering....Our goal is to finish six rounds of chemo and if it shrinks the tumors we will proceed to surgery.

Now how did this all start, good question.  Matt has a history of dairy intolerance, severe intolerance.  He always thought his issues were related to that and just thought there was nothing he could do abut it.  Unfortunately, gut issues and inflammation can turn into other things and well it did and finally resulted in cancer.  He thought he had gall stones and had an ultrasound.  imagine the surprise on the technicians face when she saw tumors on his liver.  Well that led to a colonoscopy and then the final diagnosis.  It was a whirlwind that day and the following weeks.  Colonoscopy on Monday, tell the children on Monday night, chemo education on Tuesday, port on Wednesday and chemo on Thursday.  Worst week ever! 

Matt's liver is in bad shape.  So much so they could not go directly to surgery like they normally would with colon cancer.  We need the tumors to shrink to get the liver healthier and then they will operate.  We are almost to the sixth chemo.  I am counting on surgery as that will remove the cancer, otherwise the only treatment is "chemo until he does not want to do chemo anymore."  says the oncologist.......Well, over my dead body!  I will not give up fighting with him and for him.  Matt is young and strong and has his family and friends to live for.  We will help him fight and we won't give up.

Fiona was so upset when we told her.  She knows about cancer and realizes her daddy is really sick.  She has the support of family and friends all around her.  I want her to know she  is not alone and I will always keep her safe in the dark times.  She has other mommy's to talk to if she doesn't want to talk to me or doesn't want to upset me.  Fiona is why Matt fights.  

Liam just tuned ten the other day.   He really doesn't understand what cancer is and what it could mean.  I'm actually thankful for that.  He understands that Matt is sick.  He knows Daddy isn't working.  But that's the extent of it really.  He is so thoughtful and loving and helps out all of the time.  He is a ray of sunshine in these dark times.  His innocence helps us forget about our reality.   Liam is why Matt fights.

Matt is feeling more and more sick as treatment goes on and he has lost a lot of weight.   His spirits are brightened by spending time with the kids and the visits from friends.  He is overwhelmed by the outpouring of love and support from our family, and friends and our whole community.  The love and support we feel is indescribable.  It's what gets us through day to day.  We love you all and appreciate everything you have done for us and are doing for us.

I could not text all of you and I am not putting this on Facebook, but I do want you all to know about Matt's condition.  You all matter to us.  We know you all care about our family.  As we live OUR new normal we try to hug more, laugh more and say I love you more.  Life is precious and tomorrow is not promised to any of us.    

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