Wednesday, April 4, 2012

The First Steps Toward Healing

So I have now settled into my corner suite (they keep calling it the corner pocket) here at Georgetown. We checked in on Monday and underwent a lot of testing and preparation. I had a central line put into my upper chest so they can draw blood and give medicine easily without having to prick me. It is convenient for that, but just a pain to have something that is constantly an invasive reminder of all this nonsense. I had a bone marrow biopsy to get a baseline of the current state of the disease so that they can compare this to my marrow in a few weeks. These are never fun but, since I was actually staying in the hospital, they gave me two doses of morphine and one dose of dilaudid so I was pretty loopy and in a different universe by the time they actually did it, which I greatly appreciated......I'm sure I was the source of a few good laughs, particulary some air smooches I was sending to Hanna with a dozen other people in the room. Then they started pumping me with fluids and getting my body ready for chemo, which started on Tuesday. The first 3 days I am getting this drug that is given every twelve hours for 3 days for 2 hours at a time. So this will be thru Friday. To go with that, they have to give another drug that protects my bladder because this particular chemo is harsh on the bladder. I appreciate their looking out for my future urinary habits, but it has kept us pretty tethered to the room since it runs for 24 hours straight. The doctors, nurses, cleaners, cafeteria workers, interns, and everybody have also been amazingly nice and helpful. They also have a smile on their faces and are willing to do anything for us.

Life has brought us to this point and we have to just fight away, keep praying, keep planning our future, keep laughing, and staying strong. I will most likely be admitted here for about a month and we are of the mindset that the best way to stay positive and strong is to take it day by day, so that is our current approach. My mom and Hanna's family are going to come down this weekend and hopefully have a normal Easter dinner. My good friend Luke and his family live on campus at Georgetown and have offered their place so we will have a place to hang out and eat and I think they are going to let me go for a few hours from the hospital so that should be nice. Other than that, we have had a few visitors and are going to have many more to share the time with over the next few weeks.

I have no words to describe the outpouring of love from family and friends that has been evident over the last week. It amazes, inspires, and motivates me to think of all these amazing people praying for me, thinking about me and battling with me. It keeps us strong, keeps us smiling, and helps trememdously with this fight. I am in awe at the loving spirit of those around me. Hanna, my beautiful and amazing wife, blows me away with her support, her hugs, her smiles, her attitude, and her love. She is at my side through all of this and I can't imagine not having her. She keeps me strong and we handle all of this as a team. I love her more all the time (for example, she brought me reeces pieces and coffee today). Our families have also been walking this terrifying walk with us and we all help each other which makes it more bearable. It is a blessing to know there are many who we can lean on.

So, that is what has been happening. I am anticipating that we will fall into a bit of a routine at the hospital and with the chemo and it will become the new normal. The side effects should kick in more and more over the next couple weeks, but those are hurdles we are ready for and will handle when they happen.

Keep praying for the success of these helps and is very reassuring. Thank you for reading this and being a part of helping us kick cancer to the curb.

God bless, much love, and

ALL Will be Well

"This is a mountain we hoped we'd never have to climb; but it's not Everest and it can be surmounted" -- Dr. Broome


  1. Love you, Lyons!! Have a blessed Easter & I will have to figure out a time to visit. Praying for you daily.

  2. We are sending you lots of love and healing, positive energy. Wish we could be with you more during this time, but you are constantly in our thoughts and prayers. Love. Always love. Erika, Jason and Sawyer

  3. I think of you every day Dan. Know that I love you and your in my prayers. I'm hoping to join you all for Easter, always great to spend time with family.

  4. Dan,

    You are an incredible, spirited, and all-around kick ass guy! I know in my heart of hearts that the only reason this disease keeps having a go at you is because it knows how strong in mind, body, and spirit you are- and it is more frightened of you than you are of it. Keep fighting. Keep living. Keep dreaming...and , to lighten this response a bit, keep blowing those air kisses to your phenomenal wife!

    Peace, Love, and Good Vibes,

    Holly (Spinelli)

  5. Hi Dan. I work with your incredible wife, Hannah. You both remain in my thoughts and prayers. I am going to pass your name onto my parents so they can add you to their prayer list. I, for one, know that prayer works as my Mom is a cancer survivor:) I know there is not much else that I can do to help, other than be supportive to Hannah. I can offer to play words with friends with you while you are hold up in your "corner pocket". I just plain suck, but will play if you want to. You can find me on fb.....Caryn McKean Bursiek. Have a Happy Easter!

  6. Dan,

    You ARE the man! Its worth repeating. Me and Lizzie P are praying for you every day. I am amazed that you take this opportunity to reach out to others and continue to be such a positive influence on friends and strangers alike, just like you have been since the day that I met you. You are an inspiration. Thanks for being so awesome. Send your pain my way, I can handle it. Keep the love. We are looking forward to seeing you in August!

    Your bud,

  7. Dan!

    The Pattersons (Jake & Lauren, kiddos too) are praying for you from Vermont!

    I am so incredibly inspired by you and your words and example - you are amazing.

    Keep your chin up and remember:

    "we know that God works for the good in ALL things for those who love Him and who have been called according to His purpose" Rom 8:28

    Lots of love!

    Lauren, for the 4 of us

  8. Thinking of you Dan. Pulling for you too. My dad just got diagnosed with Acute Myleosomething Leukemia three weeks ago. He just finished up his first bout of chemo a couple of days ago and is doing well, so I finally have a sense of what you're going through. Keep fighting the good fight.