My Husband Has Prostate Cancer Now What
My husband has prostate cancer! Now What? Well, in short, life goes on for now. Travis has prostate cancer and it truly sucks more than the #cancersucks hashtag can explain to you. We want to make more memories as a family together and to make the most out of our lives together but, that’s hard to do because of all the medical bills. Basically, to have more adventures as a family requires time and money, yet the majority of time must be spent on working for insurance and bills.
It’s a catch 22!
- A requirement that cannot be met until a prerequisite requirement is met, however, the prerequisite cannot be obtained until the original requirement is met.
I am sure you have heard the saying, “Things have gone from bad to worse.” That is exactly what has happened since I have updated all of you last about my husband’s prostate cancer. We proceeded with the robotic radical prostatectomy nerve sparing surgery with Dr. Pettaway at MD Anderson. That was a hard surgery for my husband to heal from. Really, much harder for my husband to get over than we thought it would be. We stayed at the Extended Stay America Hotel right next to MD Anderson for 11 days after surgery. We live over 500 miles away and I just can’t image him having made that trip home. I’m so glad we decided to stay close to the hospital. It was a long and expensive stay but, a much better rate than other hotels! If you are wondering what to expect after a prostatectomy, I will tell that story in another post soon. Trust me, you will want to read it! We learned a lot after surgery!
The Dreaded Post-Op Pathology Report
Since we live so far away from the hospital, my husband’s doctor called us with the results. We already knew he had cancer so really, we thought it was not going to get any worse, right?! Nope, we were wrong. About a week before Christmas, we got the call. Thankfully, the kids were not home at the time. I don’t think I could have handled this call with them home. The doctor asked Travis if I was around and could he put him on speaker so he could talk to both of us. My heart even drops now remembering that phone call.
Apparently, the biopsy results were way off. Instead of a Gleason 6 my husband has Gleason 9 Prostate Cancer. The doctor went on to explain that the cancer is a lot more aggressive than they had believed at first. It had spread to the lymph nodes and Travis would never be cured of Prostate cancer. He explained all the details of the pathology report. Then, I did what looking back on, I probably should not have done. I asked what did that mean; what was my husband’s life expectancy; how long did he have to live? I wanted the answers and I wanted it straight! The doctor replied, “I feel confident we can get you a good 7, maybe even 8 years…..”
After that I don’t think I remember a word he said. Tears started running down my face and I felt like I could not breath. My thoughts just went random. What? Eight years! And he said it so upbeat, like that was a good thing. We have three boys ages 17, 10, and 5. Our youngest would only be 13 years old! That is not long enough!! My husband is only 43 years old and you are saying I will lose him before I am 46 years old!!?
Our Lives Have Changed Forever
Cancer has changed our lives forever. In some ways, our lives have changed for the better. You wouldn’t think a person with a loved one who has terminal cancer would say that, huh? Well, for this moment it is true. We are eating healthier, most of the time. Occasionally, we still eat junk food but, trust me we are much more aware what goes into our bodies. We planted a garden! I do not have a green thumb but, I am trying! It is kind of nice to go out there every day and water the garden. We also planted pear trees! hehe I planted four! My husband is like, “What are we going to do with all those pears?!” I told him not to worry, I am sure I will kill at least three of the trees.
We are traveling and doing more. You quickly realize that tomorrow is really not guaranteed in any way. I know, this is true for everybody. Any of us can die in a car wreck, heart attack, stroke, robbery, bad weather, and so on. But, when a doctor tells you there are only 8 years left, it makes it so much more real! Travis loves kayaking and I try to encourage him to go as often as he wants. We have started hanging out with friends more often and going down to the beaches close to us every chance we get. We are currently planning a family vacation. Travis and I are actually going somewhere for our anniversary this year! We never had a honeymoon.
I have started making our garage a home gym. Actually, the gym set should be here this week! Yeah! It is about time! It has been on back order for two months. The doctors have told us a healthy diet and exercise are key for Travis. I still have hope. I have hope that doctors will find a cure. I have hope that this cure will come before it is too late for us. I even have hope that maybe Travis will be the reason they find a cure. He has started the Finite Clinical Trail at MD Anderson Cancer Center. We have much hope that this very trial could possibly lead to his and others cure for prostate cancer!
So What Now?
For now we are going to continue traveling back and forth to MD Anderson Cancer Center. It’s actually become a rather enjoyable trip to take with Travis. We look at it as our alone time together. We don’t agree on the same music so, we don’t even play the radio anymore.
My husband and I want to share our story with all of you. This article is just the beginning of what we want to share. We are going to share our favorite healthy recipes, how to have a home gym, gardening tips (if I can develop that green thumb), our travels, and more. To go along with the good there is also the bad to share. Too many men are affected with this horrible cancer yet, so many of them keep it to themselves. Prostate cancer takes away some men’s feelings of manly-hood, it can take away sex, and the ability to control urine. We want to talk about all of it! This is the real part of #cancersucks.
Life has to go on for now. The kids have to continue their lives like normal. They know their daddy has prostate cancer but, we have not told the two youngest boys the life expectancy. Our middle son likes to talk about the future a lot. And there are some days I just want to break out in tears because of a suggested future adventure I know may never happen. You have no idea the sadness you feel when your child says, “Hey Daddy, how old will you be when I am your age?”
If you would like to read some of my husband’s words or support us in any way please check out our Go Fund Me Page.
Jessie Fulkerson says
I love this. Tina you and Travis are both great writers. There are always tricks to learn through cancer. I picked up several throughout breast cancer. Smells became very important to me, because I used them to focus on other places during my chemotherapy. I all love you. Stay strong, and pray, God provides.
Mindy S says
Wow, what a moving post! My thoughts and prayers are with you. <3
Julie Cutshaw says
My prayers are truly with you all, and I know you not from Adam. But I know what you are dealing with because my husband of almost 39 yrs wed, just had half his colon removed from cancer short of two yrs ago and all the chemo to stop it from coming back. So far test have been good but his liver is having issues now. I too felt my heart at my feet when the Dr said 5 yrs left if it comes back. But I rebuked that thought and you must try to do the dame thing. Or it will just dwindle on your every thought in a negative way and ruin each moment you do have together. And do like you say, be the more positive to focus on anything good and uplifting so the next memory is a happy one to look back on. Theres day I want to just curl up, and cry my eyes out. But I notice the more I try to stay focused and positive the more he is and his days are more productive in life together. We are older, but age is just a number, the hearts are all the same when you realize love and life may end in the ones God blessed us with. Our grandson is 12 yrs and we feel as strongly in worry of grief for him as if it were our children back at that early age. I know theres a better place when this world is no more for our earthly bodies that God created. But we want it to last here and never loose their love and presence. My husband is so private, he doesn’t like me mentioning his health outside of family etc. But it helps to hear of others situations and you are so right, cancer once heard, just sticks like a magnet to the brain and every thought of all involved in it’s path. I’m just more aware now and thankful for every tiny task, or thing that he and I, and our family can share with each day, even each moment we receive. And the Lord sends angels to help him, me, us all, in so many ways from the nurses, medical issues resolved, medicines to help instead of harm with nausea etc to even a peaceful day with beauty in it in some way to give you the strength to go on. I know the VA hospital has support groups, probably even ones for the younger children to rely on dealing with there feelings to get through what cancer causes. But for now we’ve not used that avenue. Though again, that may be an angel of support that the Lord will put in our path one day. We are stronger than we really know when faced with battles, I pray for each of you to be blessed with that strength to get through this together.
Julie Cutshaw says
misspelled word up there….should be same thing…..not dame thing…oh my time…sorry…I need an angel today to see better to write…
There have been days were I have curled up and cried. But, you are correct, staying positive and having productive days helps for everyone to create positive memories and stay happy. It does stick in the brain but, we try not to let us get us down. We want to be active and outgoing. I have noticed that the small moments in our lives really count now. When everyone is laughing, I catch myself making a mental note to remember it. I just want to soak it all in. I look at their faces and really see the smiles!
I will pray for your family too and we truly appreciate your prayers for us.
Kathleen Kelly says
My hubby had colon cancer about 4 years ago and recently had another CT scan, the results were a bit disturbing. He had another colonoscopy and they found a polyp that was questionable. He got the results today, the polyp was pre cancerous and the doctor had removed it and cauterized the area. So another colonoscopy in another year. We were both so relieved. Watching him go through chemo was so heartbreaking and I never want him to go through that again. I am so sorry that you and your family are going through this. I hope that you can do all of the things that you have planned. Sending best wishes to you.
Linda Manns Linneman says
I feel so bad for you both. There is good news though. God is in the miracle business. If you do not have a relationship with Jesus then please do so today. This will be the best decision you will ever make. I will be praying for all of you. God Bless
Michelle Elizondo says
Im sorry to hear this. Sending prayers.
Diana Vuong says
My dad had prostate cancer, had surgery to remove it, and it end up spreading to lungs 6 months later even after the surgery. It was too aggressive and he died. If only there was a cure to get rid of all the cancer, but all they can do now is to suppress it. Praying for a break through on the cure!
Lynda Cook says
Sorry to hear this and sending my prayers to you, I have no idea what to say and it’s always hard when you hear this, I have no idea what I would do if this had happened to me, this is such a hard and touchy subject for me!!
Christina G. says
I’m so sorry to hear this. Positive thoughts beaming your way. Thanks for sharing!
I came across this post while entering a giveaway and visiting your FB page as one of the entries. I don’t believe in coincidences, I believe that God orchestrates things like this. I was diagnosed with Brain Cancer at the age of 34, when my 2nd daughter was 5 weeks old. The first one was almost 3. I was given a life expectancy of 2-5 years. Just as you said, that’s not long enough! I know there are statistics etc. as to the life expectancy given, but, I also know there is God. And, every one of our situations is so unique. It’s been just over 3 years since my initial diagnosis and I am doing fine. I haven’t had any reoccurence. I realize that our Cancers are totally different from one another, but I’m commenting in hopes of encouraging you. I’ve added you and your husband to my prayer list.
Jerry Marquardt says
This is very serious, as I have a friend who found out the bad news. appreciate your support and information.
DENISE SMITH says
i am 43 and my husband is 50 this year i am so sorry about what has happened to you and your husband and kids i wish you all the best and have a good time on your honeymoon i will be prayeing for you all
Amber Ludwig says
My prayers to you and your family!! I love the positive things you’ve done with such a negative diagnosis!! A lot of love can be packed into 8 years!! Of course not nearly enough!! I hope you do whatever you can as a family to enjoy every second together!
Michelle Elizondo says
Im sorry about your husband.
Saundra McKenzie says
Prayers sent. Been trying to get hubby to go for a checkup- he is 53. He just refuses.
Angela Asbell says
You all are in my prayers!
:(, i cry. I really sorry.
Kathleen Kelly says
It is not an easy thing dealing with cancer. My husband had colon cancer 4 years ago, fortunately, though, he is now a cancer survivor. Chemo was terrible on him, he lost 40 lbs, couldn’t eat anything. It is hard to watch that and I can’t imagine what you and your family are going through. Sending along my prayers.
Geri Sandoval says
Sending prayers your way and a special angel to help you and your husband. God bless your husband and you Tina through your journey with cancer.
Michele Murdock says
Speechless right now. Thank you for posting your story. My husband is going to have his prostatectomy in 4 days. My heart is heavy right now.
Travis Branch says
Hi Michele. It’s been over three years since your post but, any update on your husband? I’m still alive and kicking, 6 years into this journey, even with regional spread Gleason 9.
Tony Tyme says
I wanted to say THANK YOU for sharing you and your husband’s experience, and providing LIGHT from your experience, I had NO light at the end of this tunnel that I’m now experiencing just as your husband was.
Reading how you and your husband persevered through, that LIGHT at the end of my tunnel began to SHINE SOOO LIGHT AND BRIGHT.
I am a week away from having my surgery (March 13th 2020) I wanted to take this TIME to THANK YOU for YOUR Efforts, I’m so ENCOURAGED.
THANK YOU for Giving
Travis Branch says
Hi Tony. I don’t get on here often anymore but, wanted to check in on you and see how you are doing a year and a half post prostatectomy. I’m still alive and kicking, even with regional spread gleason 9. Hope all is well for you.