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Will be Wearing Purple More Often

Well, it looks like I will have to wear purple now. I have been avoiding it in the past. I have nothing against the color it is just not what it tend to wear when I run. But it is for a cause. I have always supported them but at the same time there are others that deserve my attention like the USO who I ran for last year at the Marine Corps Marathon and the Livestrong crew that always have my support. Well, less of that and let me start from the beginning or at least a few months ago.

We had recently moved to middle Tennessee and in that process of moving I had kind of laid off of the running a little while packing and doing my best to get those DuPonter’s up to speed with what it is that I did for them. The best part was I knew once I got to Tennessee I would get right back to it. It would be awesome. Well, we moved in and I eventually found a nice walking/running path that I could get a few miles on without much trouble. It was nice and it was lined with honeysuckle. There was one problem. Okay two. It was very hot for March (90+) and the pollen count was about infinity. I went out and it was a tough couple of miles. Not fast and I was exhausted. I didn’t think much of it. I just figured it was the conditions and I just needed to get back into the swing of it. So I did. I kept it up but things didn’t get better. I went out for a track session and it was slow. Ladder intervals should not go out at 10+ minute miles. I went out for a short long run and it was awful. Still, I have had awful long runs before but I was getting concerned. I just could not get up to speed or distance. I just getting way to tired over very short distances. My legs felt great but I could not get the energy to them. To top it off, afterwards I was totally beat. It did not make sense. After about a month of this I had a doctors appointment with a new doc (Dr. Bill) just to get established. Well, I figured I should mention my running problems. I told him that it was hard to breath and running was very difficult. He checked me out and I got a chest x-ray and it was determined that I had pneumonia. Well that explained it. I was put on some antibiotics and that should clear things up. A week later and things were progressing slowly. I had pneumonia before and I knew it would take a while to recover. I would have to be patient. I had a follow up and the doc said my lung had not cleared up yet. He sent be for a CT scan which was an interesting experience which the injected me with something that made me really want to pee then put me through a donut thing. In any case, I was done but I did not make it back to work before a message was waiting for me telling me that I needed to see a Pulmonoligist asap. That did not sound good.

Now for the scary part. I had to pick up my CT scan so that I could give it to the Pulmonoligist (Dr. Pethkar). The report, had some scary words and the outlook from the radiologist point of view. I saw Pethkar and he gave me some of the worst news I could have ever gotten. A larger mass in my left lung and a smaller one in my right lung, Lung Cancer. We scheduled a bronchoscopy for two days later. I called my parents about it and they were on there way. The worst part about a procedure like a bronchoscopy is that I cannot eat or drink before it. That means no breakfast and no coffee. In any case, it was done I got coffee and food as soon as I got out of there and then came the long wait for the biopsy. Good news, not lung cancer but bad news was no conclusive answer to what it was. We scheduled a CT assisted needle biopsy to get a better look. Well, this sucked just as much because no my lung was being punctured and it hurt. Again, more shitty news of nothing. Dr. Pethkar was convinced that it was not Lung Cancer. This is when Space really got involved. She talked to her colleagues at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital about what was going on and they said get up to Philly for a better look. I went up there and they took 10 vials of blood, testing for everything. The goal was to find a way to diagnose and cure without surgery that may end in me loosing a significant amount of my lungs. I was game for that.

I spent about two weeks in Philly waiting for the results, which my new employers were being amazingly patient. I love those guys. I kept trying to run but it was getting worse. I went out for a 2.5 miler at a blistering 14 minute pace. I took a nap for the rest of the day after that. I wasn’t this tire after running back to back marathons. The blood tests really did not show up anything so I was off for a surgical consult. We decided on a more extensive bronchoscopy where they went in for more which was guided by ultrasound. I met Dr. Kumar (No Harold) just before the put me under. Snorting lydocaine is possibly the worst thing ever. Except for when I came out of it coughing while they still I still had stuff down my throat. The recovery was just as bad and I had to spend the night at the hospital. They let me out and I got a plane back to Nashville because I had spent way too much time away from Rae.

It wasn’t too long before I started hearing the preliminary results and by Wednesday I heard the official diagnosis. Not lung cancer but Classical Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. I was told that no cancer is good but if there was one this would be it. I meet with the Lymphoma Doc (Dr. Reddy) at Vanderbilt next week and I start the next great challenge. It will be awesome and in short order I should be able to breath again so I can run again. So now, I guess I will be wearing a lot more purple. Lets go Team.


One Response

  1. It is a good thing that you have so many Brothers out there for support. One day at a time. You can do it.


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