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Hi, my name is Marc and I am 38 years old.  June 1st, 2016 I was diagnosed with Stage IV Lung Cancer.  


I have a beautiful wife and two awesome boys, Bailey 17 and Landon 13.


April 2015, I ran my first full marathon, which was the single biggest achievement of my life.  I was so proud...  In July 2015 I changed jobs and moved into a very stressful position, which did not support my running life style, so I pulled back.  I still ran, but not nearly as much as I had been or wanted to.  In Nov 2015, I ran the first race since my marathon, which was the Rock n' Roll 1/2 marathon in San Antonio, TX.  After that run I felt like I had hurt something in my right upper leg (pulled muscle or something).  From that point on I felt like my body wasn't healing.  I would push myself to run and it would get worse.  Some days I would just walk thinking that would get me to a better place.  In February 2016, I ran the New Orleans Rock n' Roll 1/2 marathon.  I had a decent race, coming in under 2 hours, but barely.  Again, it took me several days/week to overcome my soreness.  But I kept at it...  In March I ran a relay race from Austin, TX to Houston, TX (20+ miles).  Felt ok...


Fast forward to Memorial Day 2016, I was rough housing with my son on what should have been a fun and memorable day.  I stepped back on my right leg and felt a pop.  I was down for the count.  After a day of sitting on the couch watching TV, I got in to see my family Dr.  My normal Dr wasn't there so I saw another Dr at the practice.  He gave me an exam and said It was definitely in my hip (not knee where i thought) and gave me two options 1) go home and rest 2) move forward with X-ray and MRI to find out what was going on.  That day I made a decision I normally would not have made.  I made the decision to get to the bottom of what was going on.  That same afternoon I had an X-ray which came back negative, which the Dr thought would be the case if it was muscle related.  On Friday, June 3rd I went for an MRI.  I was a little nervous, but went by myself thinking ok, this will tell me whats wrong and we can move on.


After waiting the weekend, Monday and most of the day Tuesday, I was getting restless...  So I started calling the Dr office trying to get answers.  I wasn't in any real pain, but I had jumped through all the hoops to get an X-ray and MRI, I wasn't letting go until I had the results in hand and could put this behind me.  So...  the moment I had been waiting for...  My Dr (now back from vacation) called me.  He said Marc, the MRI confirmed you have a fractured hip and a slight tear in you muscle...  (and then the bomb dropped)  He went on to say, but we see numerous lesions in your pelvic/femur/lower spine area, which we need to explore further.  My heart sunk...


So, the next day I went in for a physical exam.  The Dr felt it was necessary to take a few more steps.  He ordered Blood Work and a Bone Scan for the next day.  My wife and I were stressed, but glad they were moving quick.  The next morning while i was getting ready I received a call from the Dr office.  The nurse stated the Dr wanted me to go ahead and get a CT scan while I was in for the Bone Scan, so we did. That afternoon, my wife asked if we could meet with the Dr to get an update on the Blood Work which was taken the day before.  He accepted us and we met.  Unfortunately... the first words out of his mouth was "its not good".  My heart sunk and I immediately felt like I was going to faint.  He said there were a few notable things on the CT scan, but nothing major.  However the Bone Scan seemed to confirm the MRI findings.  After I picked myself we got scheduled to meet with Texas Oncologist the next morning.  


The next morning came...  After worrying, praying, crying all night I was ready.  I felt at peace and in good spirits and was on fire for God.  Unbelievable peace I had...  We went in and talked to the Dr.  She said "I don't know if you have cancer, I am not ready to say that".  I lit up...  I had hope... She then said I want to take Bone Biopsy of you pelvic bone to see what exactly the lesion is (bone island, benign, etc., etc.).  So, the weekend was good.  I was hopeful once we got the Bone Biopsy we would know what it was.  I researched every possible alternative to cancer over the weekend.  


Monday morning I had the Bone Biopsy, which was a piece of cake.  I still had hope and was at peace.  Wednesday, June 15th I got a call.  The Oncologist's nurse called me to scheduled a follow up appointment for the next day.  When she called, I said ok, but couldn't wait for the preliminary results for an entire 24 hrs.  She began to read the Dr notes...  and she said the work "lung cancer".  My heart stopped.  I was by myself and thought I was going to pass out.  Once I pulled myself together, I texted my wife and asked her to come home as soon as she could, which she did.  When she got home, she call the Dr office again and asked for clarity.  The nurse confirmed I heard right...  Lung Cancer...  The Dr agreed to get us in that same afternoon to talk with the Oncologist.  She gave me the news and said she was sending the Bone Tissue for additional testing to try and find out what type of Lung Cancer we were dealing with.


To date (Monday, June 20th) I have not heard back.  I told my kids and parents over the weekend.  It was hard, but God gave me peace and just the right words.


On the mental/spiritual side...  Day 1 I heard God say "Peace, Be Still"...  I knew that was in the bible, but I couldn't tell you where, so I looked it up.  It was in the book of Mark (how cool is that).  It is Mark 4:39.  I always thought "Peace, Be Still" was a commandment to the people.  However, in reading the story, it  unfolds right after Jesus fed the multitudes with the fish and the loaves of bread.  Jesus and the disciples were traveling to the other side of the water and during the travel a storm came.  Jesus was a sleep...  As the storm got worse the waves started to crash over the side of the ship, the disciples went to wake Jesus, saying "Master, carest thou not that we perish?"  Jesus got up and rebuked the wind and said unto the sea "Peace, Be Still" and the wind ceased and there was a great calm.  Jesus then turned to the disciples and asked them why they were so fearful and how is it they have so little faith.  The passage goes on to say...  And they were in great amazement...


After reading that, I made a decision...  The God who calmed the storm can (and will) heal...  I want to live...  I am going to live...


What I am looking for...  I want to first impart my love, peace and support into others.  And, I am looking for others to connect with as a positive influences.  Its probably needless to say, but the internet is filled with horrible things, which many of them do not support a positive outlook.  I want to create a revolution of Lung Cancer patients/survivors (all cancer patients/survivors).  We deserve to live.  We deserve to see our kids grow up.  We deserve to grow old with our spouses and love ones.


I am going to live.  I am here for each and every one of you.  I don't know your name, never saw your face or heard you talk, but I am here for you.



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Hello Marc.  Sounds like you were in pretty good condition if you have run a Marathon !  

You say you are the father of 2 teenage boys.  All this has come up just since Memorial Day?

Wow !    Glad the doctor really investigated what was going on.  Hopefully very soon you will

get the results of the type of lung cancer you are dealing with and get a plan of care set in place and

get started. 

Please keep us posted on this and how you are doing.


Donna G 

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Thanks for your note Donna.  I will keep you posted.


I do have a question...  How long does it normally take to get results back from a Bone Biopsy on the type of Lung Cancer?  Its been a week, which seems long to me.  I guess I am just anxious.


Also, does anyone have experience with MD Anderson?  I live in Texas and looking to get a 2nd opinion at MD Anderson.



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Good morning Marc,


My name is Lauren and I am the Digital Communities Manager for LUNGevity. Your story was the first thing I read this morning and it moved me to tears, but also filled me with hope. I am so sorry for your diagnosis. Nothing can truly prepare a man and his family for a lung cancer diagnosis, but you are already handling it incredibly well by taking an active role with your medical team and seeking out a support network.


You've come to the right place to find support and to connect with others affected by lung cancer. On the message boards, you'll hear from other survivors who may have gone through similar journeys. Once people read your story, I'm sure you will get several more encouraging responses.


Here is a link to LUNGevity's Survivor Resource Center where you will find information and resources specifically created for someone facing a lung cancer diagnosis: https://www.lungevity.org/support-survivorship/survivor-resource-center


Please keep us posted and feel free to contact me if you have any questions about LUNGevity Support & Survivorship programs. My email is lhumphries@lungevity.org. In the same way that you are here for us, know that we are all here for you!






P.S. As a fellow runner, I have to say congrats on the marathon!! That is a huge feat and you should be very proud!

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Welcome Marc,


First to your questions: how long does it take to generate bone biopsy results?  About a week but sometimes longer depending on the type of cancer (lung cancer) involved.  Anxious is a vast understatement.  During my diagnosis experience I was well beyond anxious.  This is normal by the way.  On MD Anderson and you mentioned Texas Oncology - yes, I've experience with both and both are fine institutions. But, institutions don't treat your cancer, doctors do.  in the course of your second opinion, a good idea by the way, try and imagine yourself in a long term association with the oncologist you see at MD Anderson or the one you've seen at Texas Oncology.  


Lung cancer treatment is a long game and you want to have a doctor and a treatment setting that is comfortable for you.  So you are choosing doctors, not institutions.  I hold a preference for the small clinical treatment setting as opposed to the large hospital institution.  That said, your cancer treatment might require a full service hospital to treat but if both are suggesting a "standard of care" treatment approach, I'd opt for the smaller clinical setting.


Surprisingly, the skills you've acquired in your marathon training will translate to your lung cancer treatment.  In particular, these are persistence and discipline.  No one told me that as I entered treatment and despite having these skills, learned as a soldier, I failed to apply them.  Without knowing the details of your treatment plan, I can say with assurance that it will be a marathon, not a sprint.  So mentally prepare for your treatment marathon using the same mental techniques used for your running marathon.  


I like your attitude.  I believe one's approach toward treatment and outcomes makes a difference.  Lauren referred you to the resources of LUNGevity website and you should spend time reading in. In particular, I suggest http://www.lungevity.org/about-lung-cancer/lung-cancer-101


Back to attitude because it is so important.  While deep into my treatment experience that was not going well I discovered an essay written by Stephen J. Gould, PhD.  He was a Harvard professor of biology and paleontology diagnosed with mesothelioma, a nasty form of cancer.  His essay changed my life.  Perhaps it will change yours.  You can listen to it here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cH6XuiOBbkc 


Stay connected with us Marc.  You'll have many questions and this is a good place for answers.


Stay the course.



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Tom & Katie - Thank you both for your post.  I am already feeling better, just having the opportunity to interact with others who have the ability to understand/process what I am experiencing.


Tom - The video was great.  I am a data guys, so I get it.  Next to my spiritual outlook, my mind went to the data.  I am young, healthy, bright and a fighter.  I will challenge both means and medians.

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So sorry to read of your recent diagnosis, you & your family will be in my prayers. I just wanted to tell you how inspired I was by your attitude & determination...those attributes will serve you well along the journey ahead. I was diagnosed in August 2015 w/inoperable stage IIIb adenocarcinoma, have had chemo, radiation, surgery (lymph node involvement) & more radiation, but am still in the fight.


I am new to this site myself, but have found much good information as well as inspiration already, but was moved to tears reading your post. Love your attitude and the fact that, in the midst of your own crisis, you are already reaching out to help others. I am looking forward to reading of your progress & ultimate triumph! Thanks for the boost.



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Thank you Ruthie.  I appreciate you response.


God is doing something massive in my life.  I can't explain the peace I feel or the fight and determination I have in my heart.


I was at my oncologist today and I just wanted to hug each and everyone of the people there and pray with this.  I don't know if that is normal for a 38 year old man to feel that way.  Probably not...


I can't wait to see what God has around the next corner.  My story isn't over, just waiting for the next chapter to be written.



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