“One day when I was shaving, I noticed a bump in my neck. Initially I thought it was ingrown hair, but it got larger over the course of a week. I went to my primary doctor who felt it was an inflamed gland. He put me on a 10-day course of antibiotics. Over that period it grow significantly from peanut to walnut size.
“When I returned to doctor he recommended I see an ENT, but there was absolutely no mention of cancer. The doctor I saw ordered a fine needle aspiration to test it. Of course it was cancer. Before I was actually able to get in front of a surgeon at Memorial Sloan-Kettering was a total of about exactly two months.
“Thank God, my course of treatment did shrink and then finally eliminate my cancer. Although the radiation did give me thyroid cancer, that was expected and thyroid was removed.”
Were you able to turn your cancer fight into something positive and if so what did you do?
“Well this certainly changed me. When you are down to 126lbs, bald and have a feeding tube and are in constant pain you go through many feelings. Faith is tested, depression, despair, but the recovery and outpouring of love and compassion change that. Hope, Strength & Courage, are words that are huge in my life now. They are what I tell people fighting the way I did. It is not easy, and sometimes you want to just say F-it. But the human body and mind are amazing and the ability to heal and learn about it and yourself is what is important in life. Caring for family, yourself and life itself. I am probably a much nicer more grounded person before I got sick.”
written by John Amoscato – husband, father and friend.