The Gift That Keeps On Giving

I’m a cancer survivor going on fifteen years. After dozens of radiation treatments and chemotherapy, my doctor told me I was cured. What he didn’t say, or didn’t emphasize, was the fact that radiation is with you for life and will continue to wreak havoc on your body in ways you couldn’t imagine. A hundred years from now, doctors will shake their heads and wonder aloud why we would put such a toxic material in our bodies willingly. 

So here I sit, fifteen years later, still suffering from the side effects of the treatment and on my way into surgery again to try to save a portion of my body that couldn’t withstand the onslaught of radiation’s mighty sword. And like millions of other cancer patients, I will survive. All I ask is that if you are ever in a situation where a doctor suggests a vigorous dose of this toxic therapy, get a second opinion, maybe even a third and think real hard about the consequences. They are real and with you forever, just like that embarrassing post on Facebook.

I’D BE DEAD AT 39 IF…

… I’d been born in 1918.

The magic of modern medicine has touched all of our lives in many ways, but can you imagine where you’d be, or not be, if you’d been born during the last pandemic? I would’ve survived the pandemic, I’m sure.  My immune system has resisted COVID several times so I’m one of the lucky ones with good genes. But, at 39, I would’ve probably died from a heart attack, if not, been severely disabled. Then, at 49, I would’ve died from cancer.

All this makes me pause and reflect. There would be no writing career, no music career, no watching my triplet daughters grow up into beautiful women. Then I think about all the people back then who died before their time and weren’t able to contribute that life changing achievement to the rest of the world because of some illness. It’s humbling.

And to all the people 100 years from now who read this message and are living way beyond their naturally selected time here on earth because of modern medicine, just realize how blessed you are to have been born after 2021, but most of all, please make me proud.