I'm Skipping Chemo to be in Chicago - Special Request for my Wife at Wrigley -
I am skipping my bi-weekly infusion of immunotherapy to be in Chicago this weekend. When I arrive back home I will go to the hospital the very next day for my treatment. My oncologist told me to have fun and not to sweat missing it, for a couple days.
However, this post is not about me, but my wife.
Late last fall, less than three weeks after losing her mother, after a 7 year battle with the horrors of dementia, I was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. I wasn’t sick at all, but one serious symptom reared its ugly head. I acted on that symptom and less than 12 hours and a wake up later, I was told I had a significant mass on a major organ and the scans showed significant metastatic activity. Surgery was scheduled and the cancer source was removed. However, the metastatic activity would need to be monitored, closely.
When my wife asked what I wanted for Xmas I said, “I want to go stare at the ocean, and go see as many bands as we can this summer.” Since I was a kid, the ocean and music were my escapes from reality. That's it, let's go immerse ourselves in some music!
As tour dates were being announced for numerous bands, we began our planning. I honestly had no idea whether I would be able to go, or if I would even be here. But the planning began. Imagine how happy I was when saw that her favorite band would be playing some big stadium shows this summer. I entered the lottery, hoped for a miracle and we won tickets, to both nights, including GA on Monday night.
As spring started turning to summer I started to get gravely ill, not from cancer, but unexpected side effects from the medicines I was on. I was sick, couldn’t keep a thing down, had serious lung and other major organ issues. I was steadfast, we are not changing a thing, onward to our shows. My oncologist knew the only way I would miss any shows was if I was incapacitated, or dead and told my wife that I was not jeopardizing my health more, by going. These trips were too important to her, to us. We went to Red Rocks, twice. We’ve been to Florida, NYC, and all over the northeast. The first trip we went on, was brutally hot and I could barely move, but we managed. She was my rock, put up with the daily hell of me being very sick, but she continued to do everything to make sure it was as good as it could be, for me. At times, it was brutal. I couldn’t eat, breathing was difficult. Her worry for me detracted from her experience, but she never said a word.
We have laughed, we have cried, we have danced, all summer, regardless of my condition. Miraculously, the side effects started to get under control late last month and I have been doing much better. We're extremely excited after the Seattle shows, for the Chicago shows.
My request is a simple one and it’s for her. If “Black” is played this weekend , please dedicate it to my wife, Christine. She’s always said when she hears that song, “I just know he’s singing this to me” For some reason she thinks she has a pass for Eddie from me, but she doesn’t. I don’t know Ed, at all.
We’re going to try our damnedest to get into GA early Monday so I can get her as close to Eddie and the band as possible. I can’t spend 12-15 hours in line, I’d be out cold by show time, but we can likely go in when the gates open.
My attitude with life is different now, so I won’t sweat the small stuff. I hope we’re surrounded by nothing but people, who realize we’re all in this journey together, like it or not. I’ll be the guy down there weeping if they play “I am Mine” or “Just Breathe” cause those songs hit me very hard. My prognosis isn’t horrible; it’s unknown, which can be cruel as we await the next scan or test. So I will live and cherish the moments I share with all of you, and her.
One thing I tell myself all the time is that I need to put things in perspective and it’s my advice to all of you.
I also tell myself, “I wish I was as fortunate, as fortunate as me” because it could be so much worse.
Thank you all for reading
See you at the ball park!