...Once my mother gathered herself from hearing the news- did I mention she started passing out and had to lay down in the doctors office while I paced around. It was really funny actually and we've shared a laugh about that a few times but I'll get to my mother later. Looking back I should have known something was up as our appointment time was noon and there was no one in the doctor's office not even staff. Guess they thought we might cause a scene and shoot the place up! I remember the first thing that filled my mind once being diagnosed was how will I tell Katharine, who is mourning the loss of her brother, that I now have cancer. You can imagine how that went but she was tough and we embarked on this new adventure. I'm not sure I can put into words the feelings that came over me in the following few days and weeks but maybe the closest thing would be.... euphoria !?
Within a few hours of being diagnosed with a disease that usually hits people over sixty I began treatment. Blood cancers are very complicated and to this day I don't understand half the terminology but multiple myeloma effects cells in the bone marrow weakening the bones, immune system and so on. In the next few days I would be sent to the specialists at the VGH Bone Marrow Transplant Unit where I've spent much of my time since being diagnosed. Due to my weakened condition they immediately started me on high dose steroids and a bone strengthener and it was also decided my best chance at extended life was a bone marrow transplant....hunh! How they do that cut into every bone and shoot marrow into you?!-which is what i thought. I was put on a worldwide list and the search began as did my euphoric summer.
I wasn't unable to continue work which had been getting tougher for me the months leading up. I had bone pain throughout my rib cage to the point where I was breaking ribs while playing tennis and unable to sleep from being in too much pain. I had bouts of pneamonia and was coming apart at the seams but I still went to the gym the morning of my diagnosis. I was lucky all my debts were insured and I didn't have to pay them while I was sick. I collected unemployement and had family close who helped out when needed. My life became about one thing enjoying every moment and that's what i began to do. Those steroids made me feel better fast but it's not real they actually weaken you, make you crazy and really really hungry. Each day i'd wake up early, take my steroids, take Katharine to work then start my day. The summer of 2001 was particularely hot and I enjoyed every moment of it. I'd usually wake one of my friends up to have breakfast then either have a light workout or play par 3 golf. The afternoons would always be saved for long motorcycle rides and waiting for Katharine to get off work so we could begin the evening festivities. It seemed every night we'd have our friends over to bbq salmon, eat cherries and laugh the night away. We smoked plenty of pot which really helped me wind down from the steroids and keep my mind off things. The support of all our friends, family and coworkers played and continues to play a crucial role in getting through this. This next one is for you................
Posted by Chad Warren at 9:38 AM
ChristyOctober 31, 2009 at 8:35 PM
keep writing Chad...we're reading…
love christy and dan..