July 30, 2010

What lies ahead

Time off - When my severance began on July 1st, Mary and I agreed that I would take the month of July off. Well, here it is the second to last day of the month and I can't believe it is already over. Even though I wasn't actively looking for my next career, I do have a few irons in the fire. Nothing concrete at this point, but it is nice to know that in this economy, I am at least able to find some potential career opportunities. 

In the mean time I have been keeping myself busy helping a friend set-up the social media aspects (Twitter, Facebook, etc.) of a new business venture. So far I've really enjoyed it and more details will be forthcoming.

Some time away - We have been promising Brad we would take a family trip before school started. I've been looking around and gathering ideas but nothing is set yet. Regardless of the destination, it will be good to get away for a few days.

In September I will be traveling to Washington, DC for a Prostate Cancer event. The basic premise of the event is the opportunity for myself and others to encourage our State's members of Congress to further support Prostate Caner research funding. It's an event I have tried to go to in the past but it has never fit into my schedule, I'm very excited about this opportunity!

Later in September there are two events that involve FLHW and Golf. One is a customer appreciation event for a local financial services company and FLHW is the benefactor. Though this is their first year, it has the potential to become an annual event and I am enjoying helping them plan the day and certainly appreciate the fact that FLHW was selected to benefit.

2010 FLHW Golf Tournament - Just in case you haven't heard, the date of our 6th annual golf tournament is Friday, September 24th. There are more details on the website about sponsorships, or if you are ready, you can pay for a player, a team or sponsorship ~ yes, right on the website: http://www.flhw.org/2010-events.html

We are always looking for sponsors and donations for the raffle.  Please let me know if you have any interest or business contacts for either.  We really do appreciate it!  A few businesses have already stepped up and after some recent publicity on television and on the radio, I have several leads that I will to follow up on. This year we are thinking about selling the tournament hats we have made ever year. If you are interested, please send me a note. I should have a definite answer on the color, style, etc. in the next few weeks. I will add the ability to order from the FLHW website.

As we have in years past, we are sure to attract a full field of players weeks in advance. It's an exciting day and always a great opportunity for us to catch up with friends and family, as well as to make many new friends through this journey. 

July 25, 2010

Warrior = friend, family member, stranger, hero.

We, the FLHW Foundation have sponsored close to twenty events over the past five years. Yesterday, we took a risk and it paid off way beyond our expectations.

The first annual 'Warrior Combines' is in the books. Sixteen Warriors participated, competed and sweated their hearts out. I personally want to thank each and every one of them, from the bottom of my heart.

I would also like to extend my thanks to all the others who offered their support through the purchase of t-shirts, towels and donations. Although we don't have the final financial results, we believe the results of this event will be another $1,500 that FLHW will be able to donate to support research for improved treatments and a cure for advanced prostate cancer.

Additionally, we were able to promote an awareness of prostate cancer and the importance of early detection to the Kansas City community. With the help of a new friend that I met through Facebook, we were very fortunate to have the local Fox station broadcast live news remotes from 7-9am Saturday morning. I was interviewed for three different live shots. Each interview was approximately two and a half minutes and went really great. The reporter also packaged up some of the video into a segment that ran on a few more broadcasts Saturday night. A link to the package is below. I'll post the interviews once I figure out how to get them from my DVR to my PC.

Click Here

A few months ago, I was contacted by a stranger who was the creator of the combine event. Today I have what I believe is a true friend for life. If it weren't for Jason, this idea would have never have come to life. After yesterday, he and I have big plans for future events! Mary and I sincerely appreciate his energy, time and commitment to making the event a success. We are once again blessed to encounter such an exceptional person and are grateful for his support for our organization.

Conceptually, we thought the combine event would be fun and different, but the day proved to exceed all of our expectations. Once again, thanks to all who supported this event!

July 19, 2010

As the roller coaster turns

As I have shared here before, this journey is if nothing else, a roller coaster ride.

Today, was the good part of that ride. For some that could mean, the point when the coaster pulls back into the station, for me, it's that part of the ride when you are dropping down the largest hill. That weightless, out of control feeling that for lovers of coasters, like me, you look forward to with anticipation. That anticipation was how I approached today's doctor appointment. I knew that after radiation last month the chances that my PSA would go down were pretty good. However, I had no idea what the decline might be and was cautious to not expect too much!.

Last month my PSA was 107.00.

Today it was 54% lower, or 49.89.

Wow, that is cause for celebration, even a slight one. After 19 years of marriage, and after five years of this ride, it wasn't like we were going to jet off somewhere tropical to celebrate (as nice as that might be!), but we did take some time to enjoy the day, to enjoy the news, to share the joy.

We never, ever know what lies ahead, but who really does? The difference is for the rest of you planning your life six months from now, or a year from now, it is not a stretch or an act that would seem foreign to you. For us, we celebrate this day, but right there in the forefront of our minds is that we know that 28 days from now, it all could change once again. All we can do is pray that what lies ahead is yet many more hills on this roller coaster ride.

July 17, 2010

It's out there, not in here.

I started to compose this a week ago or so after I woke from some very sound REM sleep. I woke that morning with a thought in the forefront of my mind.

Regardless of religious beliefs, and for those of you that have none, just ponder this, give it a thought. I am not professing to be some deep thinker, this was on my mind and so I share it here.

"Our purpose is out there, not in here."

Now what the heck could David mean by this simple thought? Take both your your hands, cross your arms and place them on your heart, this is the 'in here'. Now pause and give that some thought. Keep your hands there and think about who you are and what your life is about. What drives you? Do you have a cause or purpose you really care about?

Now, take your arms and open them wide, hold them out in front of you. This is the 'out here'. What are you here for? What are you doing for others?

Selflessness vs selfishness.......

I have met a number of people in my life but at the top of mind are those I have met on this journey. Those that give to and help with this cause simply because they are thinking and acting with their arms extending in front of them. These people remind me of how blessed I am.


Tomorrow is my 4 week appointment with my Oncologist. I am hopeful my PSA remains in check, and perhaps may have decreased due to the radiation treatments last month. The following Monday we will meet with my Radiologist to review the details of the radiation.

July 11, 2010

How long?

Wow... 12 days ago? Really?

This gap in my blog is yet another example of the ups and downs of this battle. Last month I was at a low point, one I hadn't seen in years. Pain, radiation, pain pills, it can all become a little overwhelming. Throw on top of that, the conclusion of a 20 year career in telecommunications and you get a glimpse of where I was by the end of June.

Well a funny thing happened over the last few weeks, one of my favorite old feelings, contentment creeped back in the picture. As has occurred previously, in the midst of my chaotic life, a peacefulness, the ability to be at ease with what is going on set in. On the health front, the radiation did what Dr. S said it would do, it completely relieved me of pain. Given that news, I've been off pain pills for three weeks and I am not even walking with a limp. When it comes to a job, well I said going in that I was going to take July off, and then worry about it. I am very fortunate that I have severance pay and benefits until next April. I also have an opportunity to do some contract work, which provides me more piece of mind. I have faith in the saying, when one door closes, another one opens.

This is all I have for now, I promise to try to provide updates more frequently over the next few weeks.

July 06, 2010


Summer is flying by, school starts in a little over five weeks!

With the end of baseball season next weekend I need to find something to do with Brad for a few days and a family trip we can get in before the middle of August? Let the planning begin!

It's good to feel good!