Like When I Got a D in Film Class

by Julie
Published on: October 25, 2011 7:12 pm
Comments: 17 Comments

So, in my freshman year of college I took an Intro to Film class.  The teacher was mean and scary and there were 890 students in the class.  I was failing the class.  I told my parents over and over that I was failing the class.  But I ended up pulling it off with a D. Compared to failing, a D seemed great!  My parents were ready to throw a celebration over me getting a D.  I played that right.

That’s kind of how I feel about Phenon’s new diagnosis.  While I was teaching today (yes, I left the hospital, it was very anxiety-provoking and surreal for me, but probably a good idea) the doctors from hematology/oncology came in and gave a clarified diagnosis.  Phenon has childhood Hodgkin Lymphoma.  As promised, here’s a website where you can find legit information:  National Cancer Institute.  We do not yet know the stage.  The docs said that her prognosis is awesome.  She will be released from the hospital likely by the end of this week.  Then she will have outpatient treatment that begins with a PET scan to figure out the exact dimensions of what they’re dealing with.  Most likely her treatment will be 12 weeks of chemo, and then possibly radiation treatment to knock out the last of it.  This is SO SO SO much better than some of the other options that I feel like throwing a party.  There are some types of childhood lymphoma that involve YEARS of treatment. It feels a little like bizarro world that I’m ecstatic over lymphoma, chemo, and radiation.  I’m ready to throw a celebration.  (Yay!  We got a D!)

Phenon has had a rough day, but everyone seems to think she IS recovering steadily and surely from surgery.  She has yet to hold down liquids or solid food, is still in a lot of pain, and has yet to get out of bed or walk around.  She has felt awful.  But she’s on her way.

This dumb-ass lymphoma has no idea the fury that is about to hit it.  Beware the Murphy rage, dude.  Your ass is ours.


  1. Carolyn Arnold Lumia says:

    No better D in the world. You go, Phenon!

  2. Jean says:

    Tears of relief. Can’t wait to have all of you back home.

  3. Jeanette says:

    Hi there Julie, Tim, and Phenon:

    Even though this is the first time I have written, know that I have been attentively following your blog. This is a fantastic medium for keeping folks up to date, and I really appreciate having the opportunity to follow along in your journey. Tim and Julie- I can’t even imagine the toll this is taking on you. You have been in my thoughts and prayers constantly. Im so glad to see that you have so many supportive people at your sides (lord knows, I know it makes all the difference). Phenon- I know we don’t really know eachother (we’ve only met a couple of times), but I’m a knitting buddy of your mom’s. My partner was diagnosed with lymphoma (different type than you) a couple months ago. She’s since started chemo and been in and out of the hospital- so we feel your pain. We know all about the long days and nights of aggravating symptoms, waiting on doctors that never seem to come, and being interrupted for medicines or vitals checks at all the wrong times. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg of torment. Hang tough, girl. Every day that you put down is one day closer to health and freedom.

  4. Melissa says:

    We’ll take a D. That works. Much love and let me know if you’d like Griffin to visit. You got nothing on this fierce family, lymphoma. much love. the Reillys

  5. Cheryl says:

    I’m with y’all –Let’s party! Just having more clarity is reason enough to celebrate. See you soon. Much love to all of you.

  6. Bobby says:

    It is going to be full of ups and downs, but I am sure she is so going to kick it’s ass!

  7. Crystal says:

    I’m so glad to hear that the prognosis is so good and that she’ll soon be home. It will be so much nicer for all of you to be home.

  8. Kim says:

    Hey, fierce family — I just wanted to say that I fully expect Phenon to win the Tour de France when this is over. Love & hugs.

  9. Gerald says:

    WONDERFUL!! Yes, getting a “D”…….thank God for the “D”. This is wondeful news considering everything that could have happened.

    I’m thinking of you guys!

    By the way, I’d like to dend something along to Phenon…could I grab an address?

    All the best,


  10. Chapin says:

    Julie and Tim – I am so very thankful that you both are such talented writers and communicators. If not for your wit and spin on these insane past few days all us would have been swallowed up by the unknown and tormented by our imaginations. This thing that has invaded P’s body now has a NAME and we now have a PLAN and we will all rally around P and she will triumph!

    Phenon – You are a warrior of limitless strength! – but, for those days when you need it know that all 4 Traugott’s are here in your corner ready to lift you up and to lighten your load whenever you need it.

    Much Love & Hugs! The Traugotts

  11. Rich Reilly says:

    Folks, I can vouch for that “Murphy rage”…the other day we walked into P’s room and they immediately forced us. To. Eat. CANDY! Having said that, I’m upgrading the grade to a C+. Phenon, in addition to all family power, you’ve got a positive forecast and you’ll be outta there for Halloween…which,last time I checked, is a holiday that seems to have something to do with candy. Rest up Phenon, and then go have some fun.

  12. Pam and Jessi says:

    Wonderful news!!! Hope you were all able to rest last night. Big hugs from the Hjelles!!

  13. amy says:

    As bad news goes, that’s pretty awesome. Been thinking about you all – Stay fierce!!

  14. Griffin says:

    This is probably the best D that has ever been given in the history of history. It’s all gonna get better from this point on, we might even get up to an A!

  15. Kiera says:

    Wish we were close enough to carry some of this on our shoulders. I’m so happy to hear that after days of mystery and confusion the news is so positive and hopeful! We will be sending sunshine and love from far away. Maybe you all can come visit here when the treatment is over and you are ready to rejuvenate. Lots of love to you all.

  16. Paul Schurr says:

    That is so good to hear! Thank you for keeping us posted and know that we are all sending good thoughts your way. Hang in there!

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