Saturday, April 16, 2011


"Jen McManus?"


"This is Doctor So-and-So, I have results from the lab."

This was the moment I had been stressing and waiting for all week long......Four days earlier I had gone to a dermatologist to look at the acne my face insists on having STILL!!?? I also planned on having her look at a mole. This particular mole had changed a lot during my pregnancy. I had had it looked at 3 years ago and biopsied. It came back negative, the doctor wasn't concerned enough to remove it, and so we haven't really thought about it since then. But at a recent physical, my doctor wanted a dermatologist to look at it. The dermatologist literally FREAKED OUT when she saw the mole, removed it immediately, then proceeded to scare the SHI# outta me with lots of cancer talk. For the next 4 days we waited to hear the results.


"It is a malignant melanoma tumor. You have cancer."

This is one of the moments everyone has probably thought about at least once. When I hear the "bad news," how am I going to react?

Will I.....Cry? Cuss? Faint? Puke?

My reaction: "Okay." A small word, but there was a lot more going on at that moment. When I heard the words: malignant, melanoma, tumor, and cancer, I found myself immediately praying. Just one other word: Jesus! At that moment when the floor dropped out from under me, I found myself clinging, running, burying myself into one thing: JESUS! And because I did at that moment I was just that.....Okay.

The doctor continued with lots of big words, stats, numbers, doctors, surgeries, and other equally scary things. But I clung to Jesus.

I hung up, went downstairs, and told Adam, "I have cancer."

It's been a couple of days now and we find ourselves just moving forward. Cancer will not suck the joy outta my life right now. I WON'T LET IT. (Well, with God's help and strength I won't let it. I'm not strong enough to do this on my own.) Cancer might have my leg, might take my triathlon, might make me sick, or make me sad here and there. Cancer will not win this one, because Jesus already has!!! So, I'm choosing to not just know or believe those words, but live those words.

Here's the 411 on everything we know right now.

I have a malignant melanoma tumor.

It is at least 1 mm thick. (It could be deeper because that is how much of a sample the doctor took or it could just be that 1 mm)

It's on my thigh on my left leg. (Yup, that's my "good knee." And, yup, that means my other two ugly scars from past surgeries will soon be getting a couple friends.)

I will be having surgery in the next week or so to have the tumor removed. The doctor will also take out a couple lymph nodes to test those for cancer. Then he will do a dye test to check to see if the cancer has spread anywhere else. We will not know what "stage" of cancer I'm in until after the surgery.

I feel great. I'm not sick. I'm still training for my triathlon, but now it's just going to have to be a different one. I was supposed to race Mother's Day and obviously that won't happen now. But I've worked hard so far and am going to continue to train. We would love it if I could race on Labor Day in downtown Austin at the LiveStrong Tri (ironic I know.) Today, I rode my second training ride outside and had an 18.4 mile average, which is SOLID. So solid actually, that I had beaten Adam's last ride. He, of course, went out and beat me back with an 18.8 average. But still. :D

Prayer Requests:

Pray Phil. 4:18 over me. "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things" Satan wants me thinking about all the what if's and other scary stuff. I refuse to do that! But I need your prayers....

Pray for this upcoming surgery. Pray for the doctors, nurses, surgeons. Pray that this freaking cancer HAS NOT SPREAD!

Pray for my family. Pray that Jesus comforts them during this time of uncertainty.

I will continue to blog about this and update everyone as we go.


Rochelle said...

Jesus is the Great Physician! I will be praying for you and your family, Jen. I pray for complete healing and no residule effects. I pray you stay rooted iin Jesus! He is Able! Love you!
Blessings, Shelly Burch

Lindsay said...

Hi, I found you through @eloranicole. I just wanted you to know that I am praying for you.

amy said...

Have been thinking about you so much and praying everytime I do. Thankful you are clinging to Jesus, but even more - that He is clinging to you. Love you and your family.

Monica Swanson said...

We just prayed for you and will continue.
Sounds like they probably caught it at a good time--
Look forward to hearing GOOD news from you soon.
Aloha, and hugs,

Beth said...

I've been down this road with a mole two years ago. I had one just below the back of my neck it had gotten pretty big and looked just like melanoma. I don't do pain, needles or blood so I just ignored it. When I finally went to a derm she freaked out about it too said she had to remove it. She cut a huge hole in my back that left a nasty scare. Mine came back negative for cancer.

7 years ago my father had cancer it was a tumor in his back. They did surgery probably simular to what you will be having done (not sure though) they kept taking skin from the area in a circle and would test it until the skin came back with no cancer (they did this all in one day). He was diagnosed cancer free. He saw a dermatologist every 6 months for shots and to make sure the cancer didn't come back. He's been cancer free ever since.

I will pray that your cancer hasn't spread and if it has that it's an "easy" surgery like my dad's and that you'll be cancer free too. Life is so precious and most people take it for granted until something happens. I'm glad that you are staying the same Jennifer even though this is happening. Keep your head up and good luck with your marathon!

Tigard Nana said...

Oh Jennifer - I am so, so sorry to read this. We will be praying for complete healing and peace for you. I will spread the word and get people praying.

With love, Bert & Judy
(and I'm going to call your Mom this minute!)

Amy said...

oh, jenn. I'm praying for you, for your upcoming surgery and for your healing. Praying also for your entire family as they support you through this!!
wish i were closer so i could hug you and bring you dinner:-)
praying for you!

minda312 said...

Wow. 2 things after reading this...
1.) Brave. You are brave!!!
2.) You've got this. (and then quickly was changed to "He's Got This.)

Praying for you!

Anonymous said...

Praying for you a lot! Praying for your hubby and precious kids as well. Like my mom said.. He is able and He is for you! Love you to pieces and trusting that they remove all of the cancer and that it flees your body in the powerful name of Jesus.

Jen McManus said...

I love everyone and can feel your prayers everyday! I'll keep everyone updated........

Marlleen said...

I'll be thinking of you Jen and praying for your family. If you ever need anything, especially post surgery, feel free to give me a call. That's what neighbors are for!

My Heart Song said...

Praying for God to prove to be your Strength and your All-in-All throughout this ordeal. Fight the good fight!
Shannon in Indiana <><

Blanca said...

I must have been in la-la-land; I'm just now seeing this news. You and your family will certainly be in my prayers!!! I'm encouraged to hear that you immediately clung to Jesus, and I pray that you continue to do so!

Missie Durbin said...

Praying for you, Jen.


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