It is a topic that no teen boy wants to talk to their parents about and vice versa. But as 15-year-old Joel Taylor and his family can attest to, it could save lives.
“Testicular cancer really is a topic that is kind of taboo to talk about,” Joel’s mother Toni Richards said. “But, it really does need to be talked about and looked out for so it can save lives.”
Toni and Chris’s son Joel was one of the lives saved just a few months ago. Joel is a very active teenager who goes to LDNE. He runs track and cross country, along with riding his BMX bike. So when he went to his mother and told her that he was having pains in his groin area, she just thought that it was activity-related.
“As any guy can tell you, there are a number of things that could happen that could cause pain in that area,” Joel’s father Chris Taylor said.
A few days later, the pains continued to appear for Joel. This is the time where problems of awkwardness could develop, preventing treatment that could save a life. Joel and his parents decided to move past the awkwardness and find out what the problem was.
“After looking for myself, I realized that there was something not right,” Chris said. “We took him directly to the ER in Oakland. They confirmed that there was definitely an abnormality and told us to get him into Children’s in Omaha as soon as possible.”
The whole process was difficult for the family. “Of course only one of us could be in with Joel at a time. His father went into their exam room with him so I was getting all this information second-hand,” Toni said.
Thankfully after the orchiectomy, Joel’s doctors saw that it was cancerous, but it did not spread. Therefore at this time in Joel’s life, further treatments were not needed. However, over the next 5 or so years he will have to have more than the usual doctor’s visits.
“It’s fine,” Joel Taylor said. “I am just happy that I am healing, and getting to get back to doing the things that I enjoy doing. Plus I am getting a lot of driving practice in because I shouldn’t be doing anything strenuous.”
While the family is a very proud family who don't want to ask for help for anything, friends and family members have not taken no for an answer. There is a fund account at First Northeast Bank where donations will be kept for continual use.
Seth Taylor with Los Diablos has set up a Poker Run for his cousin Joel, with the proceeds going to help with continual expenses due to Joel’s medical needs.
“While we are grateful for all the support that we have got so far, we are just more than grateful that our son is on the road to recovery. We want everyone with a son to know that testicular cancer may be awkward to talk about for both parents and sons, but it is very important that they are aware of the signs of it and check regularly. It could save their life,” Toni concluded.