Monthly Archives: December 2015

A quiet hero

Many of you know us. Many of you know our family. Many of you have become part of our family. Thank you for sharing our journey through the trials of our lives.

For those of you who know us, might know my brother-in-law Mike. He is an amazing man. He’s a got a quick wit, quiet demeanor, respectful work ethic, and a pride for Canada and BYU Cougars. 🙂 I love this man a lot and am very grateful to call him my brother.

Last month Mike was diagnosed with Melanoma skin cancer and thus starting one of his worst nightmares… no not the cancer. I actually don’t think he is very worried about that almost at all. The nightmare I fear he is about to experience is all the attention that his cancer might attract. In fact, when being diagnosed, he waited about 8 hours before telling his wife and then told her not to tell anyone. (For anyone who knows my sweet sister Mitzi, knows this command is almost laughable. I am very proud of how she did. She lasted until the morning and then told my dad but nobody else).

He wanted to wait to find out more details about what it really was and how bad it is. We now know more, and since he still refuses to share, and although the “talking about it” ban has been lifted, his wife is not supposed to make a big deal out of it. So I will take it upon myself to share with those that he loves. He can’t ban me, I’m his sister. 🙂

In fact, I feel I have earned this right because I distinctly remember when my son was diagnosed with cancer and I didn’t want it to interrupt people’s lives, and I told Mike there was nothing he could do so stay home and work, he directly disobeyed me! Upon arriving at Duke after our diagnosis at Big Wake, Mike was there in front of the ER waiting for us. I remember thinking, “This must mean this is a big deal if Mike left the office despite my wishes, to come and sit at a hospital all day.” I was ready to tell him to get back in his car and go home, but just found myself crying and letting him hold me for a good minute instead. I love my big brother Mike. And whether he likes it or not, people want to know details.

Let’s start with respecting his wishes and letting everyone know “Mike is fine”.

We have great faith that Mike is in fact fine. He was diagnosed with Melanoma. They say it is a classic case of early detection and it is highly treatable.It had not even been assigned a stage is it so early. It is a matter of just scraping it off. His surgeon is VERY optimistic. It will be something they will have to monitor for the rest of his life. He will go in every 3 months to get checked to make sure nothing else is growing.

He will have to wear long sleeves and hats and sunblock every single day (including on a hot golf course) for the rest of his life no matter how sunny or cloudy. If you ever see him not following these rules, please out of respect to his wife and children of this stubborn man, please offer him a hat or sunblock 🙂

He is having surgery in January to remove the current cancerous portion.
Thanks for caring. And if you want to make Mike feel really awkward and squirm, please go up to him and give him a big hug and tell him how worried you are about him.
We will keep you posted if anything gets worse, but for now, we are counting our blessings and so grateful they were able to catch it so early! We love you Uncle Mike!

If you want to know the back story it is actually kind of funny. Mitzi came to tell my dad in tears. Dad kind of tuned out when he heard “cancer” trying to think of all the things this meant. Apparently Mitzi had shared that there was an 80% chance Mike would live 5 years. Then when dad let the beans slip to me it swapped to 20% chance Mike would live 5 years.

So I got in my car and headed over in tears to climb in bed and snuggle with my big brother for what I was worried was one of his last 5 years. He then told me the real story (not the game of telephone version) and was kind of like, “I’m not dying! But feel free to bring me pity peppermint shakes from Chik-fil-a if you are worried about me!”
The great news was that the first doctor was wrong and his surgeon says it is way higher than that and probably very close to 100% that this will not effect him as long as they monitor it.

 

 

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