So, I've got cancer

Published 2023-05-19
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If you are a friend of mine and you're like "Why am I hearing about this in a YouTube video" I'm sorry about that. I spread the news a bit, but I figured I'd let this do some of the heavy lifting for me.

Also, when I recorded this email, I didn't have my full schedule, but now I do. My first treatment begins....drumroll please, literally as this video goes live. So, there's a very good chance that I'm reading the comments right now while getting my first round of chemotherapy. I've also gotten my. PET/CT which showed that the cancer has not spread anywhere from its original location in my left armpit/chest area, which is very good news.

This sucks so bad, but I'm already learning so much...mostly about myself.

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All Comments (21)
  • vlogbrothers
    Reply with some good movie and media recommendations here. NO BUMMERS. Hank, as someone who found the film Big Bird Comes Home a little emotionally overwhelming (because Big Bird leaves home and gets very scared before, get this, eventually coming home again), here are my recommendations:
    1. All nine Fast and Furious movies in order (there are bummers but the bummers happen alongside, like, cars in space, so they do not feel like huge bummers)
    2. Harvey (zero bummers)
    3. Happy Gilmore (lowest stakes of any film ever made)
    I love you. We all love you. You've got this. -John
  • Kwite
    You are a boon to this world Hank and we're all pulling for you
  • Harper
    I was diagnosed with Papillary Thyroid Cancer 7 months ago. I am 16. It's been insane, and today I got three biopsies done to check for Melanoma. Things get better, just keep fighting it. You got it man
  • Theres nothing easy about saying “I have cancer” and the fact that you’re able to remain so cheery and so geeky still about this (its science damn it!) brings so much joy and warmth to me. Hank, you’re absolutely bombastically awesome and this journey won’t be easy but there will be a definitive end eventually.
    Keep your head up high and stay strong, even if you may get a little weak at times, all okay.
    One of my favorite movies is Amelie, and I really liked the series Insatiable (its a total comedy, my only concern would be that theres murder and things like that so be careful!).
    I’ll come back every time I think of something that would be light heartedly good.
    See you soon!
  • Maya Sorini
    As a medical student, the way my breath wooshed out in relief when you said "Hodgkins." I am sending you every ounce of positive energy I have. Be gentle to yourself through this journey. Journal, if you can. Go to therapy, if you can. Let your reactions be your reactions. We are all rooting for you, and medicine can do the rest. You've done enough science, Hank, we've got this one for you.
  • Niki
    How brave and strong it is just to say the words: “I’m struggling.” Give yourself all the leniency and time that you need. Your health comes first. We’re all rooting for you Hank ❤ (love your entire outlook on this and how grateful and optimistic you are. It’s okay to be stressed and anxious and upset though too, who wouldn’t be)
  • ferris
    Just got surgery 2 months ago for cancer, was bummed as i am only 16, but it now opened the world to how many people are struggling just as much. Trust in those around you, you are strong!
  • Nathaniel Drew
    So unbelievably candid, honored that you have shared this with us, we're rooting for you through this process.
  • Jackie H
    As someone who's gotten 3 cancer diagnosis in 4 years: be kind to yourself Hank. You're probably gonna feel like shit some days, but as you said take it one day at a time and take care of yourself ❤ You've got this!
  • We're all rooting for your recovery, Hank. Take it easy on yourself. We'll still be here waiting for you ❤
  • Kensey Finnegan
    I was just diagnosed with Hodgkins lymphoma 3 days ago. I’m so thankful this came on my YouTube feed. I’m still processing it and I don’t know anyone with lymphoma. I’ve just subscribed to your channel so I can follow your journey while we deal with this together! Good luck!
  • Scorch62
    Good luck Hank, you'll beat this no problem!

    I was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma back in 2016. It was after a surgery to removed a fist-sized lymph node tumour and the top third of my right lung. I was treated to poorly by the surgeon. I didn't have a cancer specialist alongside the surgeon to help them and myself. I didn't have a family member with me, as the surgical team previously said it was most likely a haemangioma (British spelling, I know).I was dropped off at my post-surgical assessment by my grandparents while my dad finished up his shift on the ICU to collect me afterwards, obviously expecting a benign result.

    I went through several nerve wracking weeks and was several days away from starting chemo (had to clear up some post-surgical pneumonia) before I was told it was a misdiagnosis. Unicentric Castleman Disease, not HL. It was the best and worst feeling. I'm only typing this here because I don't tell my friends about the whole story.

    On the plus side, hospitals I was treated at were forced to create a series of parameters to deal with cases like me. Following my debacle, cancer diagnoses post-surgery had to be attended by the most senior surgeon present, the junior surgeon, at least one family member, a full and in-depth pathology report, an oncologist, and, if the patient is under 25, nurses from the Teen and Young Adult Cancer Ward.
  • Elissa Waller
    I was diagnosed in 2020 and had the exact same identity thought. “I don’t want to be the cancer girl! I’m so much more than that.” You can control how much you let it seep into your own perception of your identity, and I fought that for a while, but it was really comforting once I accepted that it was a big part of my life now. It’s not all of me, but it is a part of it. I’m so happy to hear you have so much support around you :)
  • Jesus Christ
    Dude, sending positive thoughts your way my dude. Love you.
  • MedusaTC
    I was diagnosed with the same thing earlier this year. They found it during stage 3 and I’ve recently started the chemo treatment. I have already seen better results in my blood work and physically. Be as positive as you can and trust the process. It may feel like hell but we gotta be thankful for our blessings.🙏🏿stay strong
  • jen
    Hanks cancer journey and his scientific understanding are going to help sooooo many folks… always loved the Green brothers insights ❤
  • Hey man, my mom pulled through ovarian cancer at 18. If they could cure her, yours is extremely treatable. You’re just gonna be a badass “I kicked cancers ass, goofy science guy who makes everyone’s day.” You just earned another title is all. It’ll be unpleasant, it always is with medical stuff usually on some level, but you’re young and healthy otherwise. As long as it stays as it is, you’re going to be fine. We will still be here when you’re feeling strong enough to educate us some more. In the meantime, I have a funny educational channel called ZeFrank, he talks a lot about animals, he might cheer you up when you’re feeling low. Don’t push yourself too much while dealing with this, you have a support system, and you do need rest when this starts.

    Oh yeah! There’s a potion crafting game on steam I like to waste time on its 2D and has a cute art style, I would recommend stardew but it does have some emotional stuff so maybe not that. Minecraft is always a classic to play, I like starbound, I didn’t find that too emotional and it’s quite fun, I’ve had my eyes on no man’s sky and that’s all I can think of for now
  • cruisepaige
    Hank we love you, you are a treasure. Please take care of yourself and know we are gonna be here waiting if you need time off.
  • My father in law was recently diagnosed with cancer as well. He's only 62 and they found cancer in his colon, his lungs, and a large tumor in his brain.
    But he is a very pleasant gentleman like a skinny Santa Claus, he's lived a full life and has 6 daughters. He is taking it good and is surrounded by loved ones who take care of him and bring him joy. It's always in moments like this when you appreciate what really matters. It doesn't matter if you live on a beachfront manor or in a trailer like him. Family and loved ones like his wife, children, and grandchildren are what matter most.