My First Blog Post (By Nick Magnotti)

Alyssa has been talking to me for a while about writing an update and I thought now might be a good time. Lately I have been feeling God calling me to be more interactive, more involved with spreading to word of his Kingdom. Every day I struggle with the thought that I may not be living up to what he has planned for me. I know that may sound silly but it is something that I really struggle with. All I can do when faced with this struggle is pray and hope that God makes his direction for me clear. This morning I was taking a shower and just thinking about how I could make God proud, how I could show people how much his love and grace can bring them happiness unlike any other. I thought a good place to start would be this blog post. So here I go.

Prayers:

I think I will start this off by talking about what my physical struggles have been. I know everyone wants to know what they can pray for so this will be one of those things that I want to personally ask for prayer for. Chemo is so hard, way harder than I ever thought it would be. I remember when I first told my Dad that I was going to start intravenous chemotherapy. He looks and me and says, “To be honest, chemo scares me more then your cancer does.” I agreed with him on that. Not knowing what to expect or how my body was going to react was a scary thought.

One thing that is really hard is knowing that every other Wednesday I’m going to feel worse than I have ever felt and sicker than I have ever felt and, to tell you the truth, that sucks. But it is something that has to be done. I have to love the chemo because it is killing what’s trying to kill me. So in a way chemo is like having a best friend that you hate hanging out with. Every other Wednesday I walk into the chemo center at Overlake hospital feeling great with a big smile on my face. I sit in my favorite chair and patently wait for one of the very kind nurses to come and hook me up. Once that IV goes in, its game on. The anti-nausea meds they give me make me feel so slow and tired; it’s really not a fun feeling. After about 3 and a half hours they hook me up to my chemo pump and send me on my way. Once I get home I hit the couch and stay there till Friday when I have to go back to Overlake to get my pump taken off. This is a good day physically and mentally I’m starting to feel better. Once Sunday hits I’m still feeling sick but I more active then I was over the past 3 days.

So I guess what I’m asking you to pray for is that I feel better faster, so that I can enjoy my time with my AMAZING wife Alyssa and maybe help her get some stuff done around the house. Don’t tell her that I told you this, but the poor thing is getting big and holding down the house for 3-4 days is getting hard for her. So please pray that God helps her get through those day, helps her not to feel overwhelmed or exhausted. She works so hard and God has truly blessed me with the most amazing, strongest, loving woman in the world. I know that sounds kind of corny but, you know what? It’s true. She is my everything and I can’t imagine going through all of this without her.

A Little Over a Year Ago:

A little over a year ago, Alyssa and I were told that I had a very rare form of cancer. That phone call is something I will never forget. It caught us so off-guard. We thought there was no way I could have cancer. I was 24 years old and very healthy. I think before that month, I hadn’t gone to a doctor in years. I was never sick. After I got off the phone with the doctor I sat down on the couch with Alyssa, we sat there for a moment just looking into each other’s eyes. We hugged and both started to cry. After those tears of sadness we started to focus on the positive. And have not changed that mindset since. Yeah, we have had a fair share of hard days, but who doesn’t?

I told Alyssa from the beginning, if I can use this to change just one person’s life it would be worth it. If I could bring one person to the Lord, all the pain and discomfort would be worth it. I focus on that every day. How can I use my story to change lives? I tell anyone and everyone that will listen to my story. I show them how, even when looking death in the face, I still have a big smile on my face. How could a person do that? Be told their life will be cut short by decades and still be smiling? The secret is God. His strength, His love flows through my body every day. He takes away my worry, my stress, my pain. I’m still blown away every day at how good he is at giving me peace.

I can honestly tell you I don’t fear that this cancer is going to kill me because God has given me that peace. Every morning when I open my eyes, He takes that on for me. There are times it brings me to tears to think how much He loves me and how much He is willing to do for me. I’m no one special; I haven’t done anything extraordinary in my life. But, yet He is there for me and my family every day. I’m telling you right now that this blessing of peace is one of the best blessings God could have giving me. And I am so thankful for it. I truly am.

Sometimes I get the feeling that I am over-blessed. Why does God take such good care of me and my family? It’s hard for me to think about all the people in the world and how there are millions of people that are going through harder things than I am. People who don’t know where there next meal is going to come from. Don’t know where they are going to be sleeping every night. People who are sick and hurting and don’t have the means to get the help they need. Yet here I am: food on my plate every night, roof over my head, clothes on my back, a wife who loves me so so much and, to top it off, I have some of the best medical care in the world!!! I would be lying if I said I didn’t struggle with this. Its hard because I don’t want to question God, but why do I get so much when there are so many who get so little? It’s a very grounding thing to think about. It is gut check that my life is truly AMAZING.

God does not promise us tomorrow. We get today and anything after that is a bonus. If there is one thing I want to try and get across it is that life is good. And no one knows when their time will come. So make the most of the day. But not by just doing things that make you happy, do things that will bring other people joy and peace. I’m not saying you need to give away your money or the nice things that you have. I’m talking about little things. Smile at the person in front of you at the grocery store. Tell a random person at the gas station that you hope they have a blessed day. I know that sounds kind of weird and that it will put you out of your element. But who cares?? You’re bringing love and joy to the world and no one knows how many days they have left to get to do that. God calls us to love. I feel like that is something we can all work on, especially me.

God has taken this cancer and turned it into a blessing. It’s my tool. My tool to spread the word of His grace and glory. I thank Him every day for giving me that tool. In this last year and a half I have told more people about God than in the other whole 24 years of living on this earth. And, at times, that makes me feel guilty. Why do I need to get cancer to focus on one of the simplest things God asks of us?

I know that some of you that are reading this may not share my same religious beliefs. But I feel that you can still focus on bringing love to this world. What does it hurt to tell a stranger you hope they have a good day? Or even just smile at someone you walk pass? I hope I’m not coming across like I’m on my high horse or anything like that. Because this simple stuff I struggle with doing every day. I just wanted to fill everyone in on the kind of stuff that goes through my head when its 2:00 am and I cant sleep. I hope when you finish reading this post that you feel uplifted and grateful for the things in your life.

Thank You:

I just wanted to spend a second thanking all of the wonderful people that have been a blessing in Alyssa and mines life. Over the last year and a half, we have had an overwhelming amount of people come forward that want to help us in any way they can. People I have known for years and people I have never met. Now I want you all to know that I’m not a big cry-er. But I have to tell you, it is overwhelming with the amount of people that go out of their way to make mine and Alyssa’s life just a little easier. And there have been times that it has brought me to tears. A number of times where I think about what you have done for me and all I can do is cry out of joy. People make meals for us. People who do our laundry, people who clean our house, and even people that buy groceries for us so we don’t have to. I want you all to know, I love you for what you have done for me and my family. I wish that I could list everyone one of you off, but I can’t. Not because I don’t know and remember how you have blessed my life but just because of the sheer number of you. There are so many of you it would take me so long to list off you and what you have done for us you wouldn’t be able to finish reading this post because it would be ridiculously long. So please know I truly appreciate everything you have done and your help and support means more to me then I can put into words. THANK YOU!

Next Step on this Cancer Journey:

With all of that said, I want to share with you what I think I am going to do next with my cancer tool. I want to be able to reach out to as many people as I can. I want to spread the word of God. I want to spread love and joy to others. I want my words to be heard by as many people as I can get to listen because that is what I feel God is challenging me to do. Alyssa and I have talked about going around to different places and sharing our story. And, by doing so, trying to be an inspiration to others. I am not really sure how to go about taking this next step but I know in my heart that God is going to help me answer that question. Please pray that God will open the doors needed to go about doing this. I feel like Alyssa and I can play a role in changing lives (with the help of our great Lord).

I hope that I did a good job of sharing my thoughts with you. Sorry if it was a little long. Just know that you have so much love in your heart and that God gives you an endless supply to share that love with others. Don’t let that love go to waste.

——

Nick Magnotti, now 26 years old, was diagnosed at age 24 with a rare form of late stage cancer called Mucinous Adenocarcinoma, which originated in his appendix and spread throughout his abdominal cavity. After a major HIPEC surgery in 2011 in an attempt to eradicate his body of the mucous-y tumors, the cancer has returned with a vengeance. He is now undergoing chemo treatments to keep the tumors from pushing on his vital organs. Surgery is no longer an option and doctors don’t expect him to live to see 30. But, that’s not stopping this guy from living his life to the absolute fullest!


Comments

  1. Rose Egge says:

    Nick,

    I think your decision to make something good come out of your cancer experience is amazing, and I know that you will be successful! Just by sharing your experience you are already letting other cancer patients know they are not alone!

    While my chemo was different, I remember just how terrible it can make you feel. The good news is, there is nothing better than the way you will feel once you are finished and your body starts to heal. It is truly amazing, and I cannot wait for you to experience.

    Never forget that its okay to acknowledge the pain you are feeling, and know it will not last!

    Thinking of you,

    Rose

  2. Therese Surges says:

    Nick,

    You are brave, courageous and yes, a God-loving man who shares the same pathology and journey as as my husband.

    Your blog entry was honest and faithful. I admire that.

    I will continue to pray for you, your beautiful Allysa and that beautiful baby on the way. God is good.

    Keith and I share the same outlook as you – smile and love through it, that’s all we’ve got – make somebody else’s day better. In the end, it is totaly in His hands.

    God Bless You.

    • Nick says:

      Thank you so much for your kind words Therese! I hope that you and your husband are doing well. Thank you for your continued prayers. :) Alyssa and I will be praying for you, Keith and your family as well. Thanks again.

  3. Brad Brown says:

    Well Nick. The post you left answered your own question. It pleased God. You have that connection with God first & foremost. And your are blessed with s team mate & partner in life that loves and acknowledges God is your strength. God does not cause things in our life that seem bad.. but he allows US to go through Fires to see where we will put out Faith. You have pleaded God by growing in your Faith in God through this. Every trial we go through in life is a Testimony in the making.. “only” if we draw closer to God. Then God can prove Romans 8:28 to be perfect Truth. God is pleased with your Faith. Gods desire is to grow our Faith through trials then we have Powerful Testimonies to encourage and strengthen others. You & Your Wife & new Baby are Blessed & Highly Favored in Gods sight. I’m Blessed to have been part of the prayer warriors out there praying for God to receive ALL the Glory through this trial. You have shown me that these prayers were not in vain. Thanks for the confirmation and praise report. Standing on Gods promises in your life.

    Standing in the Gap for you & your wife & Gods continued revelations in the path ahead..

    In His Grip Always
    Your Brother in Christ….
    Brad

    • Nick says:

      Brad, I could not agree with you more that God did not give me this cancer. He has just taken this awful thing in my life and has turned it into more then one blessing. Thank you for taking the time to send this message to me.

  4. Alonso Chehade says:

    Nick,

    Yes it was a long post, but very easy to read. Your words inspired my day and yes your story must be share with others. You’re an awaken unique individual and people are waiting to hear from you.

    Thank you for the update. Thinking of both of you today, and sending my best wishes your way.

    • Nick says:

      Thank you for letting me know my post inspired your day. :) It makes me very happy to know that. I hope you continue to have great days. God bless.

  5. Jessica Clark says:

    Nick – thank you so much for sharing your first blog. Your faith is overwhelming and you are absolutely right – you can share your love for God, and carry the message to all kinds of people; even those who do not share the same religious beliefs. And you’re doing it; you and Alyssa both are.

    Much love to all 3 of you, and thank you for helping me to appreciate each day and each moment that much more.

    You are all in my prayers… the little Magnotti family and the bigger, beautiful family around you.

    • Nick says:

      Thank you so much for your kind reply Jessica. :) It feels good to know that other people feel I am helping other people through my story. Thank you so much for your prayers. Alyssa and I really do appreciate it.

  6. Lori says:

    I just read the other day of a man who has cancer and thanks God for it because it causes him to draw all his strength from God and has given him numerous opportunities to share Jesus with others. Your testimony is amazing and a good reminder for all of us to hear. None of us know our future but we know the One who does and can safely rest in His hands. May God continue to bless and strengthen you and your precious little family.

    • Nick says:

      Thank you so much Lori. I agree with that man. God really has giving me so much through this experience. Thanks for sharing that with us.

  7. Jacque Burk says:

    Nick,
    I have had two husbands. The first died after a long battle with a rare lung disease. He spent the last decade of his life upbeat, loving, and grateful for the time he had on earth. We frequently reminded one another that it would be fruitless to waste what precious time we had together by being angry or depressed.

    My second husband was diagnosed with cancer within months of our marriage. He chose to be bitter and angry at everyone around him. Despite my attempts to cheer him or help him enjoy the time he had left, he chose to focus on the negative and could find no joy in life.

    What a different road these two men chose! Your blog so reminded me of my beloved first husband. Know that you are giving such a loving gift to your wife and all those around you. Bless you…bless you…bless you.

    • Nick says:

      Jacque, I am so sorry that you had to go through this twice in your life. I tell Alyssa every day that I feel bad for her. I feel that it is harder to be in her spot than in mine. You sound like a very strong and wonderful woman. Thank you for taking the time to share your story with me. Bless you! and THANK YOU.

  8. Elizabeth says:

    I am praying for your strength, courage, wisdom and God’s healing power.

  9. Cheryl says:

    hi Nick! I have appendix cancer also :) Thanks for such a wonderful post…your words touched me. I was diagnosed 4 years ago and have been stable so far. Some days are dark but for the most part I just keep living and planning and going on. If we don’t then it’s my belief that we have already died before we have physically left. In a strange way I feel more alive and free after this diagnosis than I did BC! This is my 2nd cancer diagnosis so it’s not my first rodeo!

    Nick, if I can be of service to you just let me know and I will do what I can. I might have a few chemo tips up my sleeve that you haven’t tried :)

    Cheryl

    • Nick says:

      Cheryl, Thank you so much for your kind words. I’m glad to hear you are stable :) I will be there soon. Do you have any tips on how to feel better sooner? That is the one thing I really need help with. Chemo knocks me out for at least 3 days every time. Thanks again! :)

  10. Mom says:

    Awesome blog Nick! I am so thankful to know that you are in the LORD’s almighty everlasting arms! I am grateful that you continue to lean on Jesus for your strength each and every day and that you are bringing Him glory by your amazing ongoing testimony! I thank God that His presence is surrounding you and that He has given you His peace that surpasses all human understanding! He is afterall our Prince of Peace!! Amen?! I love that you and Alyssa have felt the Lord nudge you to share your journey/story in maybe a more formal setting. You both have already touched countless people as they have stood back and watched your amazing faith that the Lord has blessed you both with! Keep leaning on Him, and giving Him the glory and we will see Him do even more amazing things! Maybe you guys should contact your buddies at KING 5, KIRO 7 and FOX 13 to see if they could help you out with doing a bigger kind of outreach…I don’t know…just thinking!! I am so grateful that you are my son-in-law Nick, and I love you, Alyssa and Baby girl so much! PRAISE THE LIVING GOD!!! His Love endures forever!

  11. It’s so wonderful to hear your take on this cancer. I love Alyssa’s updates, and I look forward to reading them as she has time. Now, I get to look forward to yours, too.

    Your admonition to pour out love and joy to others, no matter where you’re at, is the aim of my own daily life. I will most definitely pray that you’ll have many opportunities to broadcast this message in greater ways, and I look forward to the day you get to add your testimony of His complete healing in your body to your message!

    Love you, Angela

  12. Joe Mazzilli says:

    You’re something else Nick. I will change up my prayer for you. It has been that your immune system fight off this disease and that God gives the Dr’s tools to help you. Great stuff Nick and I promise to do what I can to be a better person!

  13. Pam G-O says:

    Nick ~ what a beautiful blog. Few people, and even fewer men, can share as openly and authentically as you do. What a blessing and encouragement you are. I KNOW you are changing lives and God is beaming. I am trusting you feel it in your heart.

    I will continue knowing, and witnessing, God’s perfect blessings in your life, and am so grateful to be part of the commuinity that raises you up and cheers you on!

    Joy filled encouragment to you dear one,
    Pam

  14. Kathleen says:

    Nick, what a blessing you are to all of us! God is working in you and through you! Your love and faith in him are an inspiration! I think your blog is a perfect way to spread his message. It does seem so very challenging in this crazy world. I too pray each day that his light is seen in me by my actions, my ability to forgive all for his Glory! I struggle whether being an example of his love is enough. We are supposed to step out of our comfort zone to make his kingdom come on earth. I know I’m supposed to do more. I can feel it. Especially with the younger generations. How to make people understand that God is our father, that be alone is responsible for all we have and that it is ok even cool to love him and follow him! You and Alyssa are so doing that!!!! I will keep working on that! Stay strong! Let him carry you to March 13th and continue to trust in his plan! Love and prayers to you and your beautiful family!

  15. Kathleen says:

    Sorry. March 31st. Hmmm? Typo? Maybe not?

  16. lisa finley says:

    This is blog I will print out to keep and possibly share in the future with those facing cancer and experiencing chemo. Why? Because its the perfect perspective Nick that God had given you- even at such a young age to be so spiritually mature. I want to thank u and Alyssa for seeing this as a tool to further our Lord’s purposes for His Kingdom. It is SO very true that He is with you each step and loves you even more than all of us praying tor you.

    • admin says:

      Thank you, Lisa! We are so happy to hear that you are considering sharing this with others. It really means a lot. God is good and He has such a plan – for all of us! I just can’t wait till we get to see it unfold (possibly not on this side, but someday)!! Thank you for your prayers and support!

  17. Grampa says:

    This is beautiful Nick, Your words are an inspiration. It makes a grampa proud to have a grandson so close to God and so willing to take the word to others and share his love. I’m truly sorry that you have to hurt. Wish it could be me instead. Love you, G

  18. Kaitlyn Dykes (Benzinger) says:

    Nick,
    It has been so many years since I have seen you. I still picture you being 14 and playing the game of life with Michelle and me. Your story is so inspirational and you have such an amazing spirit! Your faith is incredible, and I know it will be spread to others through your words and deeds. You have touched my heart with your amazing story and faith. Congratulations on your new baby girl, and I will be praying and spreading the word with you.
    Kaitlyn Dykes (Benzinger)

    • admin says:

      Thanks so much Kaitlyn! It was really nice to hear from you. We really appreciate your prayers and support. Bless you!

  19. tracy says:

    I hope this reaches your wife….. you had a angel on earth and now will forever have a angel. My heart and prayer are with you 2…

  20. Crystal says:

    God Bless you Mr. Mangotti,

    Your story touched my soul. My father passed two years ago of cancer and I admire the way you have made peace within yourself. I know it must be hard to leave behind a beautiful wife and daughter. I share your sentiments about everyone will pass away one day. Our true life is in heaven, which will be eternal. I just wanted to say more than anything that your strength and courage will carry me on for the rest of my days on earth. I believe God puts people in your path to help you in your time of need. Although I do not know of any sickness within my body, your story will live forever in my heart because of your courage, strength, unselfishness, and warm heart. God has a wonderful ANGEL coming his way, and I will forever keep your family in my prayers. Heaven will be lucky to have you! Stay encouraged because you have encouraged me.

    May God Bless you and your family forever.

    Blessed by you,

    Crystal

  21. Jeremy says:

    I want to say thank you. I lost my father at a young age and you reminded so much of what we shared and what mattered most between not just a father and son but between two people.

  22. C. Cantrell says:

    Team Magnotti,

    This is stunning. Thank you for giving us a glimpse into your family’s story and pointing us to directly towards Christ in the process. The selfless love that you and Alyssa are exhibiting in this Season is profound.

    Nick, you suggested to Alyssa that “if you could just use this to change one person’s life, it would be worth it.” God is clearly using your story mightily for His glory. I will be praying for you all as you continue to walk this out.

    Reminded of the reference in Luke 9:23 “Whoever wants to be my disciple, must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.” You guys are living it out.

    God bless your beautiful family.

    CC

  23. Nancy English says:

    Hello Alyssa,
    Just want to say I stumbled on yours and NIck’s postings on Yahoo and I’m so blessed that I did. I, too, feel the same way as Nick, that we need to go the extra mile every day to say God Bless you to family, friends and strangers alike. To share love and God’s peace wherever we are. My 30 year old daughter has been ill for over 10 years now and she still is. She is unable to work, has only Medi-cal which is basically no insurance, but she is cancer-free which is truly a blessing! She is a wonderful young lady, very gifted, artistic and loves everyone. She was just dealt a pain-body that is going to be difficult to fix. I pray over her all of the time, and now she has her own Bible which she reads daily and even quotes the scriptures better than I do! Also want to say that your husband is truly one of God’s special warriors and I would have loved to have met him. I’m sure his love and caring spirit radiated like crazy and even dimmed the sun. God Bless your family, your little precious and cute daughter, and God Bless Nick, because he is truly living his dream life now with God. Take good care, much love…

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