How I found Out…..

I have cancer.  Osteosarcoma to be exact.  It was found after I broke down and finally went to an orthopedic to have my knee checked out.  I started waking up at night having excruciating pain around my knee.  I would feel these jolts crawl up my leg… felt like in the end someone was kicking me in the crotch.   The outer areas of my knee would ache most of the day.

So the ortho ordered xrays.  Right away he noticed that the area above my knee was cloudy and ordered an MRI the next day.  A week later I learned that there was something in my distal femur (look at me use those medical terms) and he wanted me to go see a bone specialist.  He doubted it was anything cancerous, but I needed a specialist.  At the time I had just taken a huge job opportunity in Wyoming.  I was working for a small town retailer called Pamida.  Pamida is now merging into Shopko Hometown, but I was the assistant store manager learning to be a store manager.  I tell you this because the bone specialist was five hours away in Denver.

So, I traveled to Denver to see Dr. Cynthia, Kelly from the Colorado Limb Consultants.  I met with Dr Kelly, had new xrays taken.  She felt a bone biopsy was needed.  Her initial imprecision was it was just a non scary (my terminology) tumor.  They would have to go in and scrape it out, like a dentist scraping a cavity out, and i’d be down about 6-9 weeks.  We got the biopsy scheduled.

The following week, I had a planned vacation.  It was spring break.  I also knew we’d find out the results, so why not spend spring break in Colorado Springs?  Monday April 2nd I received a phone call from Dr Kelly.  It’s CANCER.

You can never fully prepare yourself for those kinds of calls.  All I could think about was, oh my God I’m going to lose my leg.  She referred me over to the Rocky Mountain Cancer Center.  I was to see Dr. Henshaw.  Friday the  6th of April, Dan and I went to go see Dr. Henshaw.

What a carnival ride.  We met with Henshaw.  She told us the type of cancer and the treatment we would start….on the following monday.  We also met with her clinician nurse Sarah.  She rapidly went through a packet of information.  I did a quick blood draw and was sent to Presbyterian Saint Lukes Hospital.  I had to have a heart ultrasound done.  While waiting there to do that procedure we were waiting for another place to call us to schedule a port to be placed monday morning.  By the time we were headed back to Colorado Springs, Dan and I didn’t know what to say to each other.  It was like….did all that just happen…….


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