My story begins in late Sept 2011. It all started with a “numbing” sensation in my lower gums/jaw area. I knew immediately something was very wrong. I am not sure why or how I knew, especially since there was NO PAIN ever. Within 48 hours, I was at my dentist’s office to get it checked out. I have never smoked or chewed tobacco and have no family history of cancer.
My dentist thought the x-ray looked serious. I remember him saying, “It looks like you have a hole in your jaw” and “this does not look like an infection to me.” He had a serious tone in his voice so I was immediately scared.
The next day I saw an oral surgeon who sent me home saying nothing was wrong with me. Dissatisfied with this diagnosis, I insisted on a follow-up appointment because I knew something was wrong. At that second appointment the doctor was still insisting there was nothing wrong and told me that a biopsy would be “very invasive.” All I knew was I was not leaving that room until she agreed to perform the biopsy. First biopsy = negative, second = positive for a Fibrosarcoma. I had bone cancer.
I don’t know how I am supposed to feel. Angry? Upset? Scared? Nervous? I don’t know what I am up against. A friend said to me, “I don’t know if you are the toughest or the dumbest to have the true belief that you can beat anything!” I’m maintaining a positive attitude about my cancer.
No one should ignore anything that feels different in their bodies. I am a prideful man who once tried to walk off a broken foot for almost a week. I now understand the importance of self-examination. I will never ignore (or let anyone I love ignore) anything that feels different or not right.
- numbing sensation in lower gums/jaw