Dan just posted this on our other blog (http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/danielhedlund). So I guess there will be more updates to come :) We love you all.
"Wow. I got away with not needing to update this blog for a solid seven months...not bad, right?
Unfortunately, all good things must come to an end.
On my most recent set of scans, they saw that two of the nodules have grown in size which means that the cancer isn't quite done with me yet. So I'll be starting chemotherapy on the 23rd of this month (which will officially be my 17th round of chemo) and after three or so months treatments I'll have another lung surgery (which will be my eighth surgery). Then we get to start this whole remission song and dance over again (though I've come to learn that remission is kind of loose term).
My first reaction to the news was, "I'm tired." I think that after three years of chemo treatments, surgeries, and doctors appointments, I was just tired. I wanted a break. Now that I've finally started my career and settled down I was ready to be "done".
But since the news, I've had time to think and digest a lot of things. I went back and read "My Story" on this Website and found the following statement:
"We know this will be a difficult time, but with the support of family, friends, and lots of help from the Lord, we know this will be a positive experience and we'll learn so much during the course of it."
That's the understatement of the century. It's too bad I can't make those kind of predictions this March in my bracket. If there's one thing that I KNOW, it's that not only have we been blessed during the past three years, but we've come out ahead of where we would have otherwise been. What I mean by that is that we learned things and gained experience and grew in ways that would have been totally impossible to do through our own efforts.
As horrible as one would thing things have been the past year, I can look at the collective experience and say that it's been overwhelmingly positive. And I don't think that's just me trying to "look on the bright side of things". Had you all experienced what I've experienced and felt what I've felt, you would say the same thing without hesitation.
I feel so blessed to have gone through the things I've gone through and I've reached a point where I can say I'd do it again given the choice. If going through cancer was the only way to get to where I am today, then I'd do it again without looking back.
So with all those things in mind, please don't feel sorry for me or bad for me that I have to go through this again. In a strange sort of way, I'm looking forward to seeing what the Lord has in store for me this time. What lessons He'll teach me. How He'll stretch me and school me. And most of all, what He will turn me in to.
Where I see myself going and who I see myself becoming are very different from where God sees me going and who He sees me becoming. But each step of the way, I can see that where He has taken me is a much better place than I ever thought of for myself. It reminds me of a great C.S. Lewis quote:
"Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what He is doing. He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on; you knew that those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised. But presently He starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make any sense. What on earth is He up to? The explanation is that He is building quite a different house from the one you thought of - throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards. You thought you were being made into a decent little cottage: but He is building a palace. He intends to come and live in it Himself."
I love you all. Thank you for your continued support and prayers."