Ok… so I didn’t just add ONE photo. The first is my daughter and I having fun with Snapchat filters. She LOVES to see them and will just laugh and laugh with each one. The second is one that I used on my Facebook page of the Automower gifted to us. (It’s amazing by the way. Like a roomba but for your lawn!!) the third was a picture my mom took of a cancer walk held by a local hospital. This was less than 3 months after my amputation. The last picture was taken a few days after my amputation after one of my walks down the hall with PT.
As I look at all of these, I know just how blessed my family and I have been through this. My daughter doesn’t care in the least bit that I’m missing a leg. She’s just happy daddy is back and not in the hospital anymore. The support we’ve received has been amazing with everything from cards, prayers, meals to lawnmowers, lawn care, and money.
Finally, my care team at the University of Minnesota has been the best. Dr. Cheng performed 2 very long and complex surgeries. The first to try to save my leg and the second to remove it but save my life. Look up hemipelvectomy surgery and you’ll find that it’s called one of the most technically challenging surgeries and there is a high risk of complications. Well I have none. They saved enough tissue that the plastic surgeon didn’t even need to do a skin graft.
The nurses deserve not just their own paragraph but really a whole post on their own. When I was down to 136 pounds during chemo they sat with myself and my wife to help get us through it. When I was in traction, they took care of me “just like I would want someone to take care of my son.” When I heard that I had to have the amputation they were there to talk and give me examples of other people they’ve seen get them and be alright. When I was in the hospital on Father’s Day they brought gifts for Adelynn so that would be entertained in that little room. They got me up and moving when I didn’t want to. I can honestly say that they became my second family up there.
I recently had my 3 month scan and appointments. I’m good. Nothing saying the cancer is back. Everything healing perfectly. The ortho fellow said that where I am is where they expect someone to be a year out. A year. And it’s all because of the things I mentioned above.