In Short: A test of faith.
For the first 59 years of my life I did not have any health issues. On Thanksgiving day in 2016 that would change in a rather dramatic way.
After a couple of weeks of right flank pain, taking a deep breath, coughing or sneezing would result in a stabbing pain. A visit to the emergency room revealed a mass in my right lung.
The E.R. doctor seemed to be apprehensive when he delivered the news that it was likely a cancerous mass, but my wife and I were upbeat and simply said OK, what are the next steps? The doctor seemed relieved with our rather positive reaction and told me to follow up with my primary care doctor on Monday.
The following day I was at our church taking care of some paperwork when the pastor arrived. I told him what had been found the day before. He looked at me and said, “God’s got this.” He prayed with me and I completely relaxed, leaving whatever was to come in God’s hands.
“God’s got this” became my rallying cry. Not once did I worry, get depressed or wonder if God really did have it. He did and over the next several months it would be proven over and over again.
The next couple of weeks were a whirlwind of activity visiting doctors and getting scheduled for a biopsy of the mass to determine exactly what we were dealing with. After the biopsy results were available, a team of oncologists started working on a treatment plan that included chemotherapy and radiation to aggressively attack the cancer and knock it out.
We started chemotherapy and radiation the first week of January 2017. I say we because my wonderful wife was there with me for every doctor visit and procedure that took place while beating cancer. Our upbeat and positive attitude during chemo and radiation was shocking to some of the staff and other patients. They could not understand how or why we were so happy and positive while having cancer.
Our positive and happy attitude came from knowing that “God’s got this.” More than once we were able to tell people that the outcome was in God’s hands no matter what. Whenever someone asked how I was doing, the answer was always, I’m doing just fine, God’s got this. And He certainly did.
When you think of chemotherapy and radiation, hair loss, nausea, weight loss and various other symptoms come to mind. I experienced none of those things, and actually ended up gaining a few pounds during treatment. That is not the usual case, but I know that it was my faith and God’s hand that spared me the usual side effects of being treated for cancer.
After 6 weeks of targeted radiation and chemo a C.T. confirmed that the treatment had been successful. A year later I was declared to be “in remission” and scheduled follow-up scans and visits for every 6 months. I am now on an annual scan schedule to make sure that nothing shows back up.
My experience is not typical when being treated for cancer, but it does show that a more positive experience is possible. I have no doubt that God, my faith, and being surrounded by loving and caring friends were the reason things went so well with a positive outcome.
David Martin is a programmer, 911 telecommunicator, and long-time computer person trying his hand at writing for public consumption.
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