Two years ago this week, all of our lives changed
My kids asked me how I could remember the dates.
In turn I asked them, "How could I not?"
We went from barely giving cancer a sideways
glance to being fully immersed in a diagnosis
and chemo within one week, two years ago.
On March 4, after weeks and weeks of coughing and
vomiting and night sweats and weight loss Kyle
had a full physical with his doctor (after a series
of many other doctor visits and failed "guesses"
at what was wrong).
All the while the pit in my stomach grew and grew.
This was not "my Kyle."
"My Kyle" never ever ever ever got sick and stayed
sick--it just didn't happen.
During that physical he told his doctor more or
less "you had better do something to look inside
my body, my wife is about ready to have a nervous
The very next day, on March 5, after pulling a few
strings, Kyle was scheduled for his first ever CT scan.
This scan revealed a large growth in his liver and
a few nodules in his lungs.
Growths and nodules....we would soon learn
more about all of this than we ever dreamed.
This was a man who's entire medical file before this
time consisted of a hospital stay for his birth
and perhaps one other page for a kidney stone.
He was just never sick.
His doctor pulled a few more strings and scheduled
a liver biopsy the very next day on March 6.
I will never forget that day....the doctor doing the
biopsy on Kyle, this big 44 year old healthy guy
was pretty sure it would be "nothing serious".
As he started the procedure, Kyle said the doctors
whole demeanor changed and he went from not worried
to extremely concerned based on the "density" of
A few short hours later it was confirmed.
Kyle had cancer.
In his liver.
We still had not heard of the word
Those three days changed everything as we knew.
March 4 and 5 and 6.
I remember walking around LDS hospital with
tears streaming down my face, everything a blur,
thinking "my husband has cancer. my husband
has cancer. my husband has cancer."
In that time, Kyle would go from a working healthy
dad to a fighter of cancer and stay at home dad.
I would go from a stay at home mom, who got to go to the
gym every morning for an hour and half, volunteer
at my kids schools, have lunch with friends and
do 'stay at home' mom things, to a full time employee,
a full time student, and a caregiver to my husband.
I honestly could never in a million years have
predicted how much change we would see over the
course of a few short years.
I am honestly surprised most days that I have not had
the "nervous breakdown" I always threaten to have.
I guess it could still be on the horizon.
Our lives indeed changed, more than we could have
EVER EVER guessed in our wildest dreams.
We are not the same people who started this journey
2 years ago this week.
One of us is no longer here.
Five of us must carry on.
(as well as countless others who carry the loss
of Kyle in their hearts.)
This journey has come with the highest of highs
and the lowest of lows. It has moved in, and around,
and through our lives and with it, the cancer, brought
so much goodness in spite of the heartache and
I stand with Kyle, who believed that the world was
more good than bad. The world is definitely more
good than bad. Cancer has shown me that if
it has shown me nothing else.
So as I reflect on the past two years, my heart aches
for the one I love and miss and a few more tears
fall from eyes this week in the remembering...yet
I embrace the pain and sadness as tokens of my love
I find courage in each new day as I think about how
HE would want me to carry on and find joy again.
I honor him in the waking and working and carrying on.
It is not without pain, and heartache and the lonely
thrum of the beat of my heart.
It is not without sadness or tears, but I keep
moving forward to honor his life, and to honor
the next 40 something years he deserved to have
on this earth.
And so today, and tomorrow, and the next day?
I remember Kyle Nielson who fought the good fight.
Who rarely complained as he did it.
Who made friends where ever he went.
Who battled this evil monster with the courage
of a true superhero, every single day.
He was truly our Superman.
I love you.
I miss you.
F cancer all the way to hell and back for stealing
you from this life.
I love you.
And that's what I've got for today.