It was Christmastime 2006. My wife took me to the hospital as I was experiencing various symptoms. The attending physician said possibly gastritis and gave me some antibiotics before sending us home. We enjoyed the holiday season the best we could, then a month later at the end of January I was sick again. This time we went to our family doctor. He also put me on antibiotics and gave me a few days off.
But, just two weeks later, the week of Valentine's Day, back to our family doctor I went. He did some illness tests with the results coming back negative, but decided to send me to a gastroenterologist on March 21st. After meeting with this doctor he made arrangements for me to have an endoscopy and a colonoscopy in early May.
I showed up in May for these tests and within three hours of my endoscopy and colonoscopy, the gastroenterologist confirmed I had stage II colon cancer. He made arrangements for me to have surgery within 24 hours and gave me a private room. At noon on May 3rd, I had surgery to remove the lemon size cancer in the descending part of my colon. The surgeon removed 18 inches of my descending colon as well as 13 lymph nodes, all of which tested negative.
I was in recovery and off work until July. During this time, my wife and my son were right there by my side. My family was very helpful and understanding during my recovery process. This diagnosis affected my wife in many ways, more than it affected me. I did not need to have any other cancer treatments, but I have been faithful about going to my blood work appointments.
Recently, I went back to the hospital for my yearly colonoscopy, and the gastroenterologist confirmed that there are no signs of colon cancer. My oncologist said the same thing at my most recent appointment.
I can officially say I am a colon cancer survivor!