In January 2015 I was first diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer (1.29.15). In January 2016 I found out the lung cancer returned. In February 2015 I had my first lung surgery. In February 2016 I had my second lung surgery. I started chemotherapy in March 2015. In March 2016 I found out the chemotherapy isn’t working. I suppose one could consider this chronology of events unfortunate or at the very least sadly ironic however I don’t see it that way- quite to the contrary; I had a pretty amazing week.
So how could I still have had an amazing week? I found out this past Thursday that I am eligible for a clinical trial of a new immunotherapy drug; I enrolled in the trial (I am number 21 of 42 patients to be enrolled) and I am to receive my first dose of the drug this week at the Abramson Cancer Center in Philadelphia. As I understand it 5 or 6 months ago this medication would not have been available to me. Hope continuous to bring my family and I strength; I am ready for round 2. Hope is not denial and hope has not failed me.
The second amazing thing? Two young ladies named Ashley and Courtney; I first met these two amazing young ladies when they were in middle school. Friends of Matt (aka ‘Biggs’) they would spend a great deal of time at our house with the rest of the ‘gang’; a group of my sons friends who at times were loud, sometimes obnoxious, sometimes challenging but always entertaining and good for a laugh- fun, crazy kids who made afternoons by the pool a good time. Back then I tried to be a role model; I wanted to set an example but I also wanted to be fun to be around; the fact of the matter is I was, and am still as much of a kid as they were. Fast forward- as the years passed I haven’t seen these ‘kids’ much. Kids grow up, life gets busy and time passes. This past Sunday Ashley and Courtney did a 50 flight of stairs benefit climb in my name to raise money for lung disease. Regarding Ash and Court…these two young ladies showed they are strong beautiful young women who could have been anywhere doing anything other than this climb- they are kind and thoughtful and they have grown into amazing women. I would like to think that maybe, just maybe I did something right back then for these young ladies (and maybe some of the other kids) to think of me years later…I think that and I smile.