Sunday, November 24, 2013

Stress and Relief

Well this last week I had a new PET/CT scan done.  Initially the next scan was supposed to be December 10th but I had noticed some swelling around the corner of my jaw and some tenderness.  I contacted my doctors and they thought it was worth it to move the scan date up.  So, the scan was taken  on Thursday.  Initially I was told that the results would be back the next day.  We were leaving for Cancun on Saturday with friends.  I couldn't decide if I wanted to know or not before our trip.  Finally on Friday I thought, "Just look your enemy in the eyes".  So, I went to the hospital and requested the results.  It turns out that they only read these complicated scans once a week on Wednesdays so there were no results.  Since I was there I had the images sent to Mayo to be read along with the read that we will have done here in Utah.

I think if you haven't had cancer it is hard to explain what it is like to wait for the results of a scan.  To be frank, most of my exams have come back with new cancer detected so I am understandably apprehensive of scans.  It's hard not to let ideas creep into your head.  I try to push them out but they keep pushing back in.  The "What if.." thoughts are agonizing.

We left for Cancun Saturday.  It was beautiful, of course, but still those thoughts hung over me, like a dark cloud.  Our second day there JoLynne and I spent floating down a jungle river in tubes and snorkeling in a crystal clear bay.  It was so relaxing that I found the dark thoughts dissipating.  They were still nagging at the edges but not on center stage anymore.   The rest of the vacation was just wonderful.  Friday, we returned home from swimming in some of the local cenotes, (water holes all across Yucatan).  When we got to our hotel I checked my email and there was a note from Dr. Foote at Mayo.

Opening it was like standing in front of a firing squad.  Gratefully the news was good.  Dr. Foote had the radiologist at Mayo read the images and they felt like I was cancer free.  One area was of slight concern so they want another scan in two months but the evidence pointed away from new cancer.  JoLynne and I just stood there and hugged each other and cried.  We are so grateful!  The firing squad had blanks in the guns this time.  YEAH!

A nice ending to a trip to Paradise.  Thank you for your prayers and support.


  1. Whew! So glad for you! Paul and I understand perfectly your "waiting for results syndrome". It can be rough huh! Love you two! R and P

  2. Thank you Roma, I know that you know. I miss you at the office.

  3. Yah hoo!!!! I can totally understand where you are coming from. Those days seem like years. You are so strong and amazing. I couldn't be more happy for you!!!!

  4. Hi Eric, the photos of the trip look great! I was just reading up on few of your posts and had quick question about your blog. I was hoping you could email me back when you get the chance, thanks!


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  6. Glad to hear your good news. I was in your class when you were first diagnosed, and am now a 2nd year dental student in Indiana. While studying for my upcoming exam, which covers osteosarcoma I hoped to find an update of you and found this very inspiring blog. Thanks for all your sacrifices to help students and for the hope you share with us all through this blog. Hope more tests continue to come back like this one!

    Michael Daetwyler

  7. Such beautiful, wonderful news! I'm keeping up the prayers for you all. Love you!!