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Thread: So I Got The News Today...

  1. #1
    Pheonixx's Avatar
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    So I Got The News Today...

    That I'd been waiting over two and a half years to get. You see, back in the Summer of 2017 I came down with a cold, then it seemed like the flu or bronchitis. Two months later nothing was helping. Then my voice got really horse to the point I couldn't speak. Finally, at an otolaryngologist's office I was told one of my vocal chords was paralyzed and that I need a CT scan of the neck and chest. My sister had had something like this so I wasn't worried. Laryngitis NBD.

    I went for the scan. Next day my ENT Dr. called and said I needed to call my PCP, they had spoken and agreed that I needed to see a pulmonary Doctor. What had caused my vocal paralysis was a large mass pressing on my left laryngeal nerve. there were other masses in both my lungs as well - I had Cancer.

    It was October by the time they had the biopsies and other tests done. The cancer had spread to several lymph nodes, so they wanted to do an MRI of my brain. The found 7 glioblastomas the largest less then a centimeter in size.The DNA test they ran initially said it was small cell cancer, the type that responded well to chemo-therapy. It later turned out that after further tests the cancer type was actually non-small cell cancer with small cell elements - not known to respond well to treatments.

    Over that initial 3 month period before I went into treatment, it was a slow drip of information, with each new revelation making my head spin. My doctors would not give me odds or a prognosis. In fact they dodged those questions better than a slick lawyer when you ask how much is this gonna cost? My blood ran cold when they started talking about palliative care [If you don't know what that is, look it up.] I started planning my funeral, and thinking about how I wanted to go out. A gun was looking real good about then. The irony here was that eight years ago I had developed the Robin Williams kind of depression. I spent the better part of 5 years learning how to face and cope with it and now I had a reason. If my friends here are wondering, that is why I ghosted off the net eight years ago.

    I had rationalized that gun ending as a better alternative than Cancer. Between my shrink and a very good friend, I worked it out. If the treatments didn't work there were other ways. Besides I had re-learned how precious life really is when you give it a chance. When I got my head out of my ass [Again], and started thinking about those I be leaving behind, I thought about my Mom. She is elderly and in declining health. Even knowing my odds of living another year with treatment were nowhere near 50-50, I decided there was no goddamn way that she would have to face burying one of her children. See mom's are extraordinary from day one. Mine is no exception, and as the saying goes, no parent should ever have to bury their child, so that became my anchor and reason to want to live. I never became parent in this life, so I will never be able to fully grasp what it's like to lose a child, but I know it's not a pain I ever want to see visited on my Mom.

    The conventional wisdom says that you fight Cancer. You see it in news reports, so and so is battling Cancer; so and so had been battling Cancer. That is all just backwards bullshit. DOCTORS are fighting Cancer, the patient is fighting the TREATMENTS. Except for having late stage 4 Cancer,and a raspy whisper for a voice, even after a delay in getting to treatment, I was perfectly healthy. Heart;good. Diabetes;Nope, Kidneys;thumbs up! Pancreas;No problem o. Bowels;clockwork. Liver;check. The real devastation comes when treatment ends. In my case treatment meant whole brain radiation where they fire xrays at your head for ten business days. (This is a treatment they try to avoid, but all to often have to do. Why? Ask me later if you really want to know.) Not like the xray you get when think you broke, or bent something in a way you shouldn't, but the kind that should make your skin turn green, add a couple a feet to your height and some serious poundage all over yourself and give you about the same general disposition of Mel Gibson after the third six pack of Fosters. But in reality makes you wanna hurl, and blow chunks, sleep for 3 days at time, and it damages the pituitary gland that regulates all your hormones, not to mention damaging nerves you did not know you had.

    Fun Times. I learned a lot. I never lost sight of why I was doing these treatments. I coped by letting it all happen the way it was supposed to, the way it was going to, no matter what I said, thought, or did. Because there is a point where, in order to survive, you have to let go of everything. There is a kind serenity in letting go - its a quiet place in my head where I can be OK with dying, while tying to avoid it. Maybe I'm just a fatalist. I wanted to let my friend knows that you all matter, time and distance never change that. Death doesn't change that. We matter to someone. These days that isn't just trite sentiment, it's hard currency as people we have never met, and may never likely meet will put their lives at risk helping other people. To those friends who I got to know years ago - thanks for being there. To those friend who've gone missing I there well, and yeah I miss em too. Which brings me full circle - sorry for rambling.

    So I got the news today. My oncologist called, my last scans show that I am CANCER FREE!! I am now officially in remission. Not out of the woods, but my doctor said in her 25+ year of practice as Cancer specialist she had never seen a recovery like mine. Patients like me who come into treatment seldom make it this far. I knew that though. I knew it before I'd asked the question way back in the beginning. The question no one would answer, because the sad truth was, I believe, they did not expect me to live. I have a lot of challenges ahead, as we all do. I have lost my hearing completely on the right side diminished hearing on the left, a slight case of vertigo which is unbefuckinlievably <yeah that's how that is spelled> annoying, and a small host of other things left over from radiation and platinum-based chemo. That's metal poisoning BTW.

    But I'm still here. So are you. In the days to come, if it gets really bad, no matter what, keep a little light of hope, because when I thought I had none, something truly wonderful happened - I got to live.


    Now did I ever tell you the story about day I caught NoNo and Timmy fighting on ....
    Last edited by Pheonixx; 04-28-2020 at 07:52 AM.

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  3. #2
    Are You Broken? Bilbojr's Avatar
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    Good news, glad you tried, lots don't. Congrats my friend, it's hard to just live.







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  5. #3
    No Time To Die BondJmsBond's Avatar
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    Your title was a bit scary because of the times, but I'm glad you made it through the hard road you had. Congratulations!

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  7. #4
    Kitty Wrangler.... Frosty's Avatar
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    Great news to hear.
    My HEVC/H.265/x265 videos can be played with either VLC or MPC-HC



    I see a ship in the harbor, I can and shall obey...
    But if it wasn't for your misfortune, I'd be a heavenly person today...
    And I thought I was mistaken and I thought I heard you speak...
    Tell me, how do I feel?...tell me now, how should I feel?...

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  9. #5
    Pheonixx's Avatar
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    Thanks all. Sorry To drop that on you but it is great news and I needed to share it. My point is that whatever we face ahead we won't be alone and we can survive it.

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    Super Moderator Misrule's Avatar
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    It's a really good story and glad you shared it. Now you can really, really enjoy life because your know just how precious it is and how easily it can be fucked up.

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