Update on Matt (October)

Thursday, October 3, 2019

If you haven't already, you can read my post about Matt's diagnosis with Hodgkin's Lymphoma here. My follow up post from August is here.

I wanted this to be a happy 'we're-in-the-home-stretch' update but unfortunately it's not. It's not too bad either, things are headed in the right direction. Just more slowly than we would prefer. Matt's latest PET scan still shows a little bit of activity in the outer rim of the tumor. We had been hoping the tumor would be completely 'dead' (inactive) by this point. It has shrunk to approximately 2.8 cm in width, from its original 9 cm size.

Matt has now completed nine chemo treatments of the total twelve. (He's had one more treatment done since this latest scan.) Due to the fact that the tumor is still a little bit active and still at 2.8 cm, Matt's doctor thinks he will likely need radiation to completely eradicate the tumor after he finishes chemo.

Radiation will probably be every week day, five days a week, for six weeks. We think he will need to begin some time in early December and continue into January of 2020. This means he likely won't be able to return to work until the new year either. And radiation has some worrisome long term side effects... It's still possible he won't need radiation, but it is most likely he will.

Over the past six weeks since I returned from my trip to Yellowstone with the kids, we've dealt with some other hassles too. Our dog, Felix, developed a bad abscess on his head and had to have major surgery and two follow up procedures. He needed a lot of after-care, but fortunately he and Matt got to be 'recovery buddies', hanging out on the couch together. Felix was in his cone of shame for about three weeks and has a huge scar, but now he's feeling a lot better.

Matt doesn't really feel like posing for photos these days, so here's a pic of Felix. Isn't he the cutest? It's hard to tell from the pic, but Felix had his head shaved for his operation. Matt is so funny, he joked that Felix was the only one who shaved his head in solidarity with him. (Yes, he asked the boys if they wanted to shave their heads. They said absolutely not.)

Matt is generally feeling okay, just tired, but the chemo seems to have a cumulative effect, and each time is a little bit harder than the last. His fingertips are numb all the time, he gets headaches, and there are occasional days where he needs to sleep almost all day. So, now we have to wait and see how the next scans look in another couple of months once Matt is finished with chemo. Cancer involves a lot of waiting.

If you are a member of my facebook group and are one of the many people who have sent a nice message or sent me good deals and products to post, thank you so much! Please keep sending those! 

For anyone who doesn't already - you can also follow me on Instagram, here.


  1. Hang tough, you will go through a lot of different firsts, but try keep communicating. My biggest problem with my husband was what I thought he should be doing and what he thought he should be doing were different. I thought he should drag his self up and live each day to its fullest, his were I’m just so tired I just want to lay here. If I could go back I would of just put everything in the back burner and crawled in beside him and just held his hand. Please make each moment count, even it’s just laying beside each other. Love and prayers.

    1. Thank you for this wise advice! Yes I can relate as there are days when I wish her were more motivated to do "stuff", since he often feels okay... but I have been good (well, pretty good) about not complaining when he wants to spend hours binge-watching cooking shows instead.

      On the plus side, I do feel like our marriage is stronger than it has ever been now. (While some stresses have been added to our lives, other stresses have gone away, and we both definitely appreciate each other more.)

  2. Sounds like you have so much going on but are moving in the right directions with both your guys.

    1. Let's hope it keeps going that way... fingers crossed. Just was messaging with another lady whose husband is 3 years in remission and she said she STILL worries all the time that the cancer will come back. Just really looking forward to having them tell us it's been totally wiped out.