Another Scare Already?!

Tuesday morning my back continued to ache on the side of my stump.  It seems to me that it’s caused by strain from the crutches and the imbalances of my body given that I have no leg on one side, and no abdominal muscle on the other.  Shannon helped me out with an incredible back massage that I needed desperately.  I started rubbing my stump area to help my brain relearn that I don’t have a leg and that the nerves that used to be on the back of my leg are now on the front, a technique that we were introduced to in the hospital.  Then I felt a bump near my incision!!  As I examined it, it seemed to feel exactly like the tumors in my leg before, and my heart sank.  You have to be kidding me, I just had my leg amputated and the cancer is back already?  I can’t even celebrate for a month!  Shannon and I immediately contacted Dr. O’Keefe to make an appointment.  With some help from Dad we were fortunate to see him the same day.

Even with an extremely busy schedule, Dr. O’Keefe fit us in and made us feel at ease.  He examined the bump for a few minutes and pushed on it again and again.  As I jerked with each push, he could tell that the area was sensitive.  That’s when he stopped and explained that he was very confident that this was not a tumor.  Not at all what I was expecting to hear, I felt a huge sense of relief that I’ve never felt before…finally a break!  Dr. OKeefe continued to tell us that this seemed to be located on the surface of the skin, which is inconsistent with my other tumors along with a few other factors I can’t even remember.  I was just so relieved that I didn’t process all of the information.

Afterward, Shannon drove me back home and then headed out to enjoy a complimentary facial with Mom at the Woodcliff Spa, a luxury that they both needed!  Shan’s been through the ringer just as much as I have, and has been working hard to take care of me and pick up all of the extra work around the house that we used to split.  While she enjoyed her day at the spa, I relaxed and soaked up the good news.  I just want to continue to be healthy and live a longer life.  I used to think that when I lost my leg life would essentially be over.  But I’m still alive, feel great, and have so much that I am excited about!


About bhoefen

Going on a road trip.
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15 Responses to Another Scare Already?!

  1. Cousin Nancy says:

    You are so inspiring. I read your blogs every day. Don’t forget when you hit the road to stop by Denver if you are going that way. Mi casa su casa.

  2. Uncle Kevin & Aunt Judy says:

    Bret, So glad to have not known about your scare until after it was over and you had good news! Sounds like it is one of those bumps in the road. New saying: tomorrow is your best day. We just know that each day is going to be better, so keep looking forward like you always do.

  3. Carol burke says:

    You have an incredible gift of expressing your feelings. Your honesty in the midst of what you are going through is inspiring. Love how you bounce back so quickly no matter what the situation.
    Keep up the good work!

  4. Kelly says:

    As always you are an inspiration!!!! I’m sure you are looking forward to getting back on the road soon. Enjoy the sunshine we are finally having.

  5. Ashley says:

    I really like your Uncle Kevin and Aunt Judy! 🙂

  6. Cousin Michelle says:

    Bret so sorry for your scare but so glad you are ok!!!
    Shannon hope you enjoyed your facial!!!

  7. ginger johannes says:

    My heart sank for just a moment….
    Be Well…………continue to be healthy and live a longer life

  8. Makiko says:

    Bret, thanks for keeping us updated. What a relief… but what a rollercoaster ride.

  9. Christine says:

    My heart sank while I read your blog. I’m so glad that it had a happy ending.

  10. Jessica says:

    I can’t even begin to imagine the range of emotions you have been feeling…both of you. Good to hear the good news.

  11. Cousin Mike says:

    haha… hey Beavis… he said “stump”. huhaha

  12. Christine Donaldson says:

    stumbled across your blog a couple months ago and check on you every day now. Your positive attitude and the obvious love you and Shannon share are an inspiration. Stay strong…and enjoy life! Thinking of you both from Philly 🙂

  13. Jamie L says:

    So glad to hear there was a happy ending to the day!

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