Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Facing the Beast

I've had 6 CT scans over the past year to track the growth of my cancer. Although I've received the summary reports for each of these scans, none of my doctors had shown me the actual images from the CT scanner. When we met with the radiation oncologists from U of M Hospital they took us through the latest CT scan of my largest tumor in my liver. It was overwhelming to see how large this mass had become. The image below is a cross section of my torso at the stomach (I've labeled things to make it easier to orient the image).

The cancerous mass in my liver is not currently blocking any of the ducts of the liver that effect liver function, but the size of the tumor is putting pressure on other organs like my pancreas and stomach. Hopefully the next round of treatment will reduce the size of this mass.

Thank you so much for your continued encouragement, thoughts, and prayers.



Anonymous said...

Wow, Nate. Thanks for the update. With the all the support and prayers coming your way, anything is possible with the faith that you have in Christ. You are a great example of a "fighter". We will continue to pray for you, Deb and the kids in this journey. We love you!
Nancy (& Ben)

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing it the way you are experiencing it. Words are not enough to say how much we respect your courage in the middle of disappointment and your faith...or how sorry we are that this hasn't all gone away. We know it is hard even in the middle of God's help and support and just know we love you so much and pray for you often.
Uncle Dave and Aunt Ruth

Joshua Underhill said...

Nate - we're praying for you. "Beast" is the right word for this thing. God will defeat it in the end by your enduring faith. Have a good day.
Josh and Sheri, Caleb, Sammy and Leo in Niles.

Anonymous said...

Hi Nate,
Wow, seeing it definitely puts the issues you're dealing with in perspective. These are the times we really feel helpless and see our true dependance on God. And I don't just mean you. It is tough knowing the battle you are in and not be able to help fix it. Prayer is our only weapon and we are still praying for a miracle. You are such a great husband and father, just rest in knowing you could not be better in either category and you are loved by many many people who are blessed to have you in our lives.
Love, John, Sally, David, Rachel, Alissa, and _____ (likely to be born in the next 8 days!)

Anonymous said...


The entire Thompson family just wants you to know that you have been on our minds a lot and we have all been praying for you, Deb and the kids.

This verse has come to mind this week, "May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit." Rom. 15:13

May digesting each word in that sentence nourish your soul today. We love you.

Rachel (for Michael and kids)

Anonymous said...

Hi Nate and Deb,

I received an e-mail from Janet Rissler and so I am forwarding it on to you.

Okay, I have tryed to send a comment and can't seem to get it done so if you can forward this to Nate and Debbie, I would appreciate it. WHAT CANCER CANNOT DO----CANCER IS SO LIMITED....IT CANNOT CRIPPLE LOVE....IT CANNOT DESTROY PEACE....IT CANNOT KILL FRIENDSHIP....IT CANNOT CONQUER THE SPIRIT....IT CANNOT CORRODE FAITH....IT CANNOT INVADE THE SOUL....IT CANNOT STEAL ETERNAL LIFE...!!! For that we are so grateful and still praying for Nate in the sunny south. Loving you, Janet

Hi - it's me again - Marge. I will see you Friday when I come to Detroit. Thank you for the update. It is hard to know why that dumb tumor isn't shrinking! Maybe, the new drug you discuss Friday with the doctors will be the one that works. We love you and pray for you all the time.

Love, Marge and Jim

Anonymous said...

Nate, since you were first diagnosed with your illness you have been in my prayers. I pray daily that God heal you and provide peace and comfort for you and your family. Marge keeps our small group updated with your progress and we contine to pray for your recovery.

Anonymous said...

Hi Nate,
I have been praying for you, Deb and the kids a lot. It is really nice to be able to read your updates, and see how strong you are in your fight against cancer and your faith. I hope to see you and the whole family soon! Happy (almost) Thanksgiving!
Love, Brooke
(AKA Freckles:)

Anonymous said...

Nate, We pray for you, Deb and teh twins thoughout the day and pray God will enable the doctors to find the treatment that will be effective. Thanks for giving us an update and even a photo! Now we can pray more knowledgably. We love you all. You are so precious.
Uncle John, Aunt Rosemary, Rob and Janna

Chris said...

Nate, when we talked last you said there were thousands of treatment options, and that you'd meet with a doctor who was an expert on picking out the best one for your case.

I'm interested in what kind of treatment you went with and reading up on it. Can you tell me what it was?

Keep fighting! We miss you at Ford.

Anonymous said...

James informed me of your situation and on going recovery. You have stayed in our hearts since McCook and always will be a part of the family. We remain proud of what you have accomplished and the pictures of your family are beautiful. You are a lucky man Nate, cancer or not, and we are better people for having the opportunity to know and grow with you in earlier years. The best pitcher on our ball team never wanted to be pulled and I see you still want the ball. Keep throwing strikes my man, you remain in our hearts always.
Mark, Brenda, James, Cody.

Aubrey said...

Thank you for sharing your thoughts and concerns with us. We appreciate your openness and constant communication during a time of hardship. We can never truly understand what it might be like for you, but we do know how strong you have been through it all.
Keep close to those you love over the holiday season and keep on fighting! You are in our Prayers,
Love Phil & Kandi & ABCDE

Anonymous said...

Hey Nate, sorry I haven't been by in awhile. I am encouraged by your stength though this - you can kick this thing. While I know that it is much easier said than done - I have faith that you will be able to share your miracle years down the road. Looking forward to hear hear of this great miracle!

Your bud from Florida - Chuck aks Charles

Anonymous said...

We so appreciate your update, Nate. You and your family are in our prayers. It is hard to understand this disease. Keep fighting it. Your faith is a witness to us and makes ours stronger. Love to you.
Joy and Casey

Anonymous said...

Hi! Margie is on her way to Aer Class and then she is going to Detroit. She called me and learned that I forgot how to make comments on your blog. So she went through it with easy! And I am just writing this to show that now I can do it!!
So may you have a day of blessing from our Heavenly Father and may our Lord Jesus give you peace , hope and joy!!! We love you and you are always in our prayers!!
Grandma and Grandpa VR

Anonymous said...

Dear Nate and Deb,
Kari came over and I finally foud out how to email you. I just wanted you to know that I'm praying for you and my whole class prays for you too. Your Mom B. keeps us informed when to look at your blog so we know what's happening. We love you and we keep praying for more treatments and even a cure for all of these cancers. Love from Judy Ellefsen and her 4th grade class.

Anonymous said...

Dear Nate and Deb,
Kari came over and I finally foud out how to email you. I just wanted you to know that I'm praying for you and my whole class prays for you too. Your Mom B. keeps us informed when to look at your blog so we know what's happening. We love you and we keep praying for more treatments and even a cure for all of these cancers. Love from Judy Ellefsen and her 4th grade class.

Anonymous said...

Wow, Nate. Words fail to adequately say what is in my heart.
Only know I am praying for you daily, and for my dearest daughter Deb, as well as for Morgan and Landon, my precious grandchildren. What a blessing you are to all of us who know you.
May God guide you and your doctors as you choose your treatments; and give you strength and patience as you go through them. And may you truly place your trust and faith in your heavenly Father.
Love, Dad C.

Future Bulldog said...

Hi Nate and Deb,
Thank you for the update. I showed my mom how to leave a comment she continually asked me. She get on me about proof reading. Now I can tell her too. We are playing for you and all you are going through!
Karin and Mark

Mike Spencer said...

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family. Thanks for the courage you have in letting us know your progress. I wish the best for you and your family through the holidays. Let me know if I can help out in any way.

Mrs.Doc said...

Hey Nate!

Just letting you know that you are doing great! My family and I have been thinking about you and praying for you. Hope all is well.

Nigel York & Family

Anonymous said...

Dear Nate and Deb,
Rob fixed my computer so I can easily access your blog! Yeah!!
Hope you are having a good Thanksgiving weekend with family and friends. We are eager to hear about further treatments. We love you all and pray for you daily.
John & Rosemary Strodtman

Anonymous said...

Do you live in Detroit? This is Sarah Newlon Pearson (classmate from MHS). I am writing from St. Louis, MO and am shocked to learn you have cancer. Nate, we will definitely be praying for you. My husband is the youth pastor at Grace Community Chapel here in St. Peters and if it is ok with you, we'll put you on our church's prayer list for our prayer team. Also, if you do live in Detroit, my friend is Nate Robertson of the Detroit Tigers. He is a great Christian guy and I would love to tell him about you and your courage. Feel free to email me at Bless you guys, Sarah