05/10/2013: The Most Amazing-Terrifying Experiences of My Life: All in 30 minutes

This is an archived post from the webpage "healingteddi.com", which is no longer online. Since the posts have been moved off of the original webpage, some of the links may no longer work.  You can still navigate through the blog through this webpage, by searching through the blog posts.

I hope these entries can continue to encourage those facing appendix cancer

Original Post: 05 October 2013

The Most Amazing-Terrifying Experiences of My Life: All in 30 minutes

Alright, to the first question that everyone will have for us:  What Happened?  Here’s the low down.

baby wyatt

My wonderful wife Teddi gave birth to our beautiful baby boy, Wyatt, on the in mid-September via Cesarean section.  She had complications during the pregnancy that made the C-section necessary – namely a greatly enlarged right ovary, which was diagnosed as an ovarian dermoid – which we watched growing on her ultrasound scans over the course of the pregnancy.

So we prepped for the surgery, and went into the C-section thinking that all of it would be over soon. We’d have our baby boy, and Teddi would have this ovarian cyst taken care of.  No more pain.  Baby boy. End of story. Time to start our life as a family.

“The birth of baby Wyatt was the most amazing experience of my entire life…“

The birth of baby Wyatt was the most amazing experience of my entire life.  The anticipation was incredible and the moment that we first heard him cry is unforgettable.  I cut his umbilical cord, carried him to his mother and we watched in awe as he opened his eyes for the first time to see us, his loving parents.  His cries calmed as he heard our voices, and we revelled in a joy of unimaginable magnitude.  What an experience! The most amazing experience of my life.

The plan during the second half of the C-section was to take care of the ovarian cyst.  It was supposed to be a fairly straightforward process, in which the dermoid was removed.  However the initial diagnoses proved to be incorrect and things began to change fast.

First, the cyst turned out to be an extraordinarily large mucinous tumour (> 25cm) that had completely engulfed her right ovary.  Then, to our great surprise, they also found with another smaller (~6-8cm) mucinous tumour on her left ovary.  With that, things began to spiral out of control.  Taking us from joy to terror as we descended into the unexpected.

“Teddi’s appendix was greatly enlarged, covered with more mucinous tumour material“

The surgeons began to explain to us that things were not going as planned – Teddi’s appendix was greatly enlarged, covered with more mucinous tumour material, that had spread to her omentum and appeared to have created lumps in her cecum.  Another two surgeons were brought in, they discussed removing her appendix and explored her peritoneal cavity further for any more evidence of these tumours.  They found more of the material on her liver, and took biopsies of it all for further analysis.  It was during this time, that I first heard the C-word:  Cancer.  My blood ran cold.  My knees felt weak.  

I was terrified.

How could this have happened?  Weren’t we supposed to be drawing to the end of this struggle?  Wasn’t it time to move on, growing a family?  Was this real?  There were so many questions, with almost no answers. Not even the doctors in the operating room knew exactly what was going on.

But I knew I had to be strong.  Teddi was still awake on the operating table, starting to get the shakes, and Wyatt was wrapped up in my arms, and would start crying whenever I grew too close to tears.  So I held it all in.  There would be time to cry later.

So they began to close Teddi up, while some of the doctors started doing some research.  Wikipedia was consulted.  Medical journals were searched.  Towards the end of the surgery, I was finally delivered the initial diagnosis:  pseudomyxoma peritonei - a disease that originates in the appendix and spreads mucinous tumours throughout the peritoneum.    I would spend the next week of my life researching every aspect of it.  The biopsies would return to show the appendix was cancerous – a low-grade Adenocarcinoma.  And I would then pour all my efforts into making it right.

It was the most amazing-terrifying experience of my life.”

It was the most amazing and terrifying experiences of my life. All within 30 minutes of each other.  What a whirlwind.

Now, there is much left to discuss, many questions for me to answer for you all.  As I write right now, word is spreading like wildfire.  I know you are concerned, scared and wonder what you can do.  I will use this webpage to give you answers to all of those questions.  So stay tuned.  Subscribe with your email at the right.  Follow me on Facebook as I keep you up-to-speed. And come back to this site for more.  I will discuss the disease at the Wiki and post more blog posts on this soon.

For now, welcome to HealingTeddi.com.  Let’s help Teddi beat this disease.