I don’t know how to title this post. I don’t think there is a simple way to title the current chaos of life right now or the emotions that I have.

*Personal information ahead involving anatomy. Possibly disturbing to close family.*

About 2 months ago I noticed a hard mass on DH’s testicle. I immediately knew it wasn’t normal and wasn’t something that should be there. He hadn’t had pain or noticed it himself but he tried to assure me that it was probably just a bruise from where one of the kids accidentally smacked him, but I wasn’t so sure. Bruises aren’t rock hard masses that get larger over time. But this did. Finally I convinced him to see a urologist who, for whatever reason, thought everything seemed normal (😶😶😶😶😶) but sent DH for an ultrasound 3 days later to just make sure.

Side note: I can’t understand how it is possible to think what was going on is normal. I just can’t imagine…

The ultrasound tech immediately saw the swelling but assured DH that he shouldn’t worry and that it looked like a hematoma to her but added that she’s no dr and can’t say for sure. So we drove home feeling relieved but also thinking how odd it was that a hematoma would last so long and wondering if it would need treatment. That evening a nurse called and moved DH’s telehealth visit up 5 days and changed it to in-person instead of a video call. She also instructed him to get bloodwork done so the dr would have the results asap. Obviously we knew at this point that something was up but we hoped the dr was just making sure the “hematoma” was just that, a bad bruise type thing.

DH was able to request prayer at church Sunday and on Monday we headed to his appointment and the nurse informed us that normally I wouldn’t be allowed to go back with DH to the exam room but that this was special circumstances. She then went on to say that there was a mass and the dr would be discussing surgery with us. So, in came the dr (with the worst bedside manner, I might add) and informed DH that he highly suspects testicular cancer, the testicle has to come out asap and oh… by the way… he can throw in a vasectomy on the other side while he’s at it if we don’t want more kids. He goes on to say that DH might need chemo but there’s no way of knowing yet and if he does need chemo, that will almost certainly destroy sperm production.*

DH and I were just sitting there trying to process the information but it was really hard and abrupt and it wouldn’t have been any easier if it had been the nicest dr on earth telling us this news, but with this dr it was just so hard to process. He sent us out to the waiting room so the nurse could set up the surgery appointment and at that point DH looked like a sad, lost and confused little boy. It hurt just to look at him and I just couldn’t stop crying. I wanted to be calm and collected (and had tried to prepare myself for this news from the beginning) but it was hard nevertheless. The nurse let us come back to another room to talk about the surgery etc and just have a minute of privacy, which we appreciated.

At home we talked more and DH decided to see another dr who is well liked around this area. That appointment was 4 days later and the dr agreed with the diagnosis (which we expected) and arranged for his colleague (who actually did a cystoscopy for me years ago) to do DH’s surgery. He was able to get him scheduled a day sooner than the first dr and the hospital he uses is only 20 minutes away vs almost 2 hours. So, obviously DH decided to go with him.

The surgery is scheduled for this week and DH is definitely feeling emotional about the whole situation. It’s bad enough to lose a testicle but to also be unsure as to what is going to be the outcome is really hard. Naturally we hope and pray (and appreciate the prayers of everyone else) that the pathology shows its not cancer afterall. And if it is cancer, we hope and pray it hasn’t spread. Even though testicular cancer has a high cure rate, it’s still a scary thing to face and especially knowing that treatment caries unpleasant side effects is hard to bear for both of us.

For me it is so hard to see DH face this situation and know that the most important thing to him is to be healthy so he can take care of his kids. It’s been his main concern this whole time… Will he be able to work? What does he need to get done before he’s unable to lift for awhile? How can he make sure he’s spending enough quality time with all the boys before he has to take a break from playing on the floor with them? (This is unimportant but we had been scheduled for the basement to be dug the week that all this happened and had to tell the contractor to wait. That really was upsetting to DH because he’s been waiting a whole year to start this project and finally the contractor was ready but now it’s not going to happen, at least not for awhile.) It’s all so emotional for me to watch. I feel like I flop back and forth all day between being at peace and taking everything one step at a time or finding myself choking up and dreading seeing DH in pain. I also worry about the boys because even though they don’t know the extent of what is going on past daddy needing to have surgery, I know this is still stressful for their little minds and emotions too.

DH was prayed over at church again this week and I really appreciate our church family letting us know we are not alone. God is already moving in the situation. It may be a small win but our hospital was not allowing anyone but the patient inside. I was supposed to drop DH off at the door and then pick him up at the door when they called me after the surgery was over. But thank God, after many prayers from our friends and family and several calls to various hospital administrators, they finally called me back this evening to say that they will let me come in before and after surgery and wait in the parking lot during. Like I said, its a relatively small thing but it’s a comfort to DH to know that he doesn’t have to be alone.

He said he appreciates all prayers on his behalf. We both do. I love him so much and I hope that this is just a little bump in the road and that he will be back to normal very soon.

*Actually, the testicle which is now the “healthy” one is the side that was previously operated on during our infertility journey. It is assumed to have a lot of scaring around the spermatic cord and likely isn’t a major player in sperm production anyway. We do hope that testosterone production isn’t compromised and that DH will feel the same as usual.