Things that were once important to us, have taken a back seat, and all of the sudden don’t seem so important. Its crazy how we lose sight over time without even realizing it, and then in one instant we are immediately reminded of what really matters.
September 2018, Ryan was diagnosed with cancer. Not just any cancer, but aggressive metastatic melanoma. At diagnosis, he was already a stage 4. That news changed our lives real quick! The life that we knew as “normal” was turned upside down.
We were a bit naïve in the beginning, not completely understanding the severity of his condition. After much prayer and fasting, we were hopeful that the decisions we were led to, would save him, just like that… WA-LA! We were quickly humbled and realized we were in for quite the journey.
January 2019, Ryan had 2 of his 10 brain tumors hemorrhage. He was rushed by ambulance to the University of Utah for emergency brain surgery. All went well and he pulled through like a champ!
2 weeks after brain surgery, Ryan experienced excruciating pain in his back and soon lost the ability to move his legs. He was taken by ambulance to Gunnison Valley Hospital, and then was quickly taken back to the University of Utah for emergency spinal surgery. Once again, surgery was successful and he is back on his feet.
He did targeted radiation on the remaining brain tumors, and is currently doing radiation on his spine where the tumor was removed.
Ryan is a trooper and has handled this challenge with so much grace, faith, courage, and strength. He has learned and grown so much over this last six months, and has become a stronger, better man. He is grateful for this challenge and for the opportunity to be molded into what his Father in Heaven needs him to become. He is an example to many as he strives to live his life to the best of his ability, always trying to do the right thing. It is an honor to have him as a husband and to be able to walk this journey by his side. We work hard to make lemonade when life throws us lemons, and will always continue to find joy even on the hardest days. Life is good, and something we try to not take for granted.
We have been told by several, that there is no cure for melanoma. They will try to keep Ryan comfortable, mobile, and alive as long as possible. We however, believe with all of our hearts that Ryan will one day be declared cancer free. We don’t say this to be cocky by any means, but have received many priesthood blessings that will always trump the opinions and statistics of any earthly being. We put all of our faith in God, and in His plan for us. We take one day at a time, trusting that He will carry us through whatever it is we need to go through. That being said, we don’t know how long this trial will last, or where this journey will take us.
Many people have reached out and asked us how they can help. First and foremost, we ask for prayers. We know they are heard, and we know that ultimately our lives are in the hands of the man upstairs. Please keep Ryan in your personal prayers, please put his name on the temple prayer roll closest to you, please include him in your occasional fasts, and just keep him in your thoughts. We have felt your love and support thus far and we are so grateful. Secondly, if you have the means and the ability to help out financially, we would be forever grateful. We have good insurance, but unfortunately, it doesn’t cut it. Ryan stresses about finances and this isn’t where we want his time and energy being spent. If you are unable to donate, no worries at all! Please leave a message of love, hope, and support for Ryan, and if you don’t mind, please share this post on your page.
To follow Ryan’s journey, check out his blog helmetrequired.blogspot.com