Thursday, November 20, 2014

Radiation, Hockey, and Fertility OH MY!


First off, Josh finished his 6 weeks of radiation, we even got to keep the mask! This crazy looking contraption was what he wore every single radiation session. When he walked out of the appointment all I could think of was it reminded me of a deer head to hang on the wall, haha. We met with his Neuro Oncologist to discuss what's next. He told us he wanted to start Chemo as soon as possible, so on December 9th Josh will recieve his first round of Chemotherapy. He will be doing the pill form, so he will do five days of medication and then has the rest of the month off. They have told us minimal side effects, nothing to crazy but let's be real, it's chemotherapy so it's not going to be a walk in the park. Luckily it's only for five days. Shortly after his first round is completed we will be driving down to Florida to spend the holidays with our families, something both of us are extremely excited for. PLUS we get to see our pup, Archie, which literally makes us burst at the seams with excitement.

 Secondly, we have officially become hockey fans! To our luck, the place where we live (which is full of Wounded Warriors) was offering free executive suite tickets last Tuesday. Being two people from Florida, we have never experienced a hockey game. We went with low expectations, mainly just those of hoping to see a huge fight. I love sports, any team, any sport..I'll watch it. Josh however has no desire for them. I remember by the second period I looked over at him and he was completely mesmerized by it, he LOVED it! Last Friday we went to the event coordinator at our building to see if there were more tickets. Unfortunately there were not but as we were walking out of the office, someone from the USO offered us tickets for a game that night RIGHT in front of the rink. Of course we accepted, we even went out and bought some shirts so we didn't stick out as much this time! We were so close that you could hear the skaters skating on the ice. You could see their facial expressions and even here them cuss out other players. We also saw our first fight! It's safe to say that we made it a point to tell his liaison that any tickets that come up, we would love to have them!

Last and most important, we were approved for freezing of sperm! TMI I know, but I figured it would be rude to not share ALL of the good news! As I said in my last blog post, making my husband a father has been my goal since day one. Thanks to my mom for actually asking the doctor, we decided to go ahead and freeze his sperm before he started Chemotherapy. Last week we got the approval of payment from Operation Second Chance, who footed our bill of freezing and storing the sperm. It's a one shot chance since he starts chemo soon. Since Josh has never had any fertility test done so we were extremely nervous about the outcome. I mean honestly, how often do you even think about how your 27 year old husband could be infertile?! So he did the required blood work (the picture shows his awesome camo bandage afterwards) and we waited to hear what to do next. We got the call last Thursday that our appointment was set up for this past Monday to go to a sperm bank in Virginia. I'll spare the details, but he did it! We had to wait a few days for them to run the test to even see if we had a shot at freezing sperm. Which, little fun fact, did you guys know that you can freeze sperm for a very long time?! I'm talking like, 10 years and on! The lab tech told us that he has seen sperm that is 27 years old, live and active! Crazy stuff, huh? Anyways, back to us. Next step was to wait to hear back from the clinic to see if he even was able to freeze sperm. The past three days have been agonizing, to say the least. We were told to just wait and they would call with the results. By day three, I couldn't take it anymore and I basically forced Josh to call to check in on the results. Turns out, no news is actually good news! Josh came out normal, with the exception of a few percentages off to do insemination as the result of radiation. They recommend IVF for a better chance of us getting pregnant. I'm elated that the results came back normal and that there is a chance for us to have a child together. We will be waiting though, at least until mid-next year. I don't need myself throwing up from pregnancy and Josh throwing up from Chemo, haha.

This was at the sperm clinic, haha!

We also celebrated his 2 months of being smoke free! I am so proud of him!

So for now, we are just enjoying each day. We are taking weekly trips to Washington DC and riding the metro like real city folk! We had a two week visit from Josh's Mom, which was really great. It was nice to get a break from medical appointments and just enjoy family. Thanks to all that have checked in on us and to those who continue to show your support!

Monday, November 3, 2014

Genetic Testing and Love!

10 years.

We celebrated our 10 year "dating" anniversary this past May. For those who know the story, you can skim past this part. For those who don't, let me tell you about my favorite love story.

Our story isn't a whirl wind romance. There was no sparks flying and I didn't see fire works when we kissed. Ours was real. It was full of ups, downs, and all the crazy things in between. We met when I was fourteen and he was sixteen. We have known each other practically our entire lives, we just never really hung out until high school. We had different friends, different interest, and to be completely honest, Josh was the class clown while I was the quiet girl in the corner more concerned with her grades than boys. We had taken a band trip to Williamsburg Virginia, and that was where we finally got to hang out with each other (mainly because Josh was interested in all of my friends EXCEPT for me, but that's ancient history now!) Immediately I was drawn to Josh, like most people are when they meet him. He's always there for a quick joke or a piece of useless knowledge but that's what drew me into him. We started dating on May 20th, 2004. Like I said, it was no world wind romance. We broke up, got back together, broke up again, swore we would never get back together, and on and on. A couple years into the relationship I severely doubted us as a couple. We broke up weeks before his senior prom, however he still asked me to go with him. It was that night that I completely fell head over heels in love with him and I knew he was the man I was destined to marry. Life happened, he joined the Navy, I graduated high school and immediately enrolled into college to get my degree. Life changed, he moved, I stayed in Palm Bay. We spent days, weeks. months apart, but I knew deep down in my soul that this was the man I was meant to be with. Fast forward to a few months ago. We celebrated our 10 year "dating" anniversary. We didn't do anything special, dinner at our favorite restaurant followed by a quiet night at home watching a movie.

10 years.

We have never been the couple to rush into anything. We got engaged in 2007, but didn't get married until 2011. We didn't move into with each other until 2012, when we moved to Sicily together. So having a family has always been something of an idea for later on. We talk about it all the time. We plan things out and we get excited when we see a new born baby, just sitting in awe of what our life could be like with a little Hearndon. We were actually supposed to be moving to Virginia around this time, November 26 to be exact. We had planned to get pregnant shortly after. We were ready. Unfortunately God apparently had different plans. Josh's diagnoses has definitely put the baby making on hold, When we got the news that it was brain cancer and that they wanted to do genetic testing on him, we DEFINITELY put the baby making on hold. I hate seeing what my husband is going through and I am literally sick to my stomach at the thought of my future children going through the same thing.

They did genetic testing on Josh. They drew two vials of blood and those tiny tubes determine our entire future. They tested 29 genes and the testing would take four weeks to produce results. So today, with one phone call, our life settled into place. Josh tested negative! Though he's still has a rough battle ahead, the possibility of having a child really make the future look bright. So what does this mean?! Well, for us it means that we will talk to a fertility specialist as soon as possible. We would like to freeze some sperm before he starts Chemo. Josh's entire world revolves around having a child and being a father, so I am willing to do absolutely anything in my power to make my amazing husband a father.

Josh completed his fourth week of radiation last week. He is doing great, kicking ass and taking names. We meet tomorrow with the Neuro Oncologist to see what's going on from here. Tentative date to end radiation is next Monday, November 10th, the day before Veterans day!