Denise and I got back to Houston a couple of days before surgery. I had a much needed week of ’normalcy’ (work, etc) and some great mornings and evenings with Denise and the kids this past week in Dublin. It was extremely uplifting to see all of their smiling faces!
This past beautiful sunny Sunday afternoon in Dublin, Denise and I had some time to ponder our current challenges over a walk in the park and coffee at a local cafe. We touched on many aspects of our lives together up until my diagnosis, as well as post diagnosis.
One subject was interesting enough, I thought I’d share. It has been amazing to hear from so many people that have touched our lives over the past many years. While reading from and speaking with all these amazing souls it’s been enlightening to hear so many different viewpoints. Some align with where Denise and I are in life and beliefs and some do not.
What I realized in talking with Denise about these interactions is this: I’m thankful to hear from you. It doesn’t bother me in the slightest if your viewpoint on life, karma or religion differs from my own. What means the most to me in any of our communications is that you thought of me. I’m lucky enough to have never been on this side of the coin before, but have definitely been on the opposite. I’ve had friends suffer both emotionally and physically and I’ve struggled to come up with words to give them in their times of need. My realization is this: the actual words don’t matter. Not one little bit. It’s the thought that you said anything at all and that you’ve spent one second of your precious time thinking of my family and myself.
I’ve heard the idiom a thousand times or more: It’s the thought that counts. I never really related to it this closely. It breaks my heart to think of the times that I didn’t know what to say to a friend in their time of need. "What could I possibly say that so many of our mutual friends hadn’t already? They probably don’t want to hear my inane rambling anyway!" So, instead, I said nothing at all - when all that really needed to be mentioned was: “I'm thinking of you."
Thank you for sending us good ‘mojo’. Thank you for praying for us. Thank you for sending your love. Thank you for spending a moment and thinking of our family. Thank you.
The real scoop now. My surgery is “on” for tomorrow (Sep 11, 2018). No more rescheduling! I’ve been through all the pre-op appointments, all the required fasts (and associated cleanses …), blood tests, CT scans, supplement drinks (Nestlé Health Science IMPACT A/R for those that are interested - it's no Nestlé Butterfinger, but it’s actually not horrendous). So I’m reporting tomorrow bright and early (05:15am).
One pre-op appointment was rather interesting. I met with a couple of researchers at MD Anderson. Due to my age being younger than the average bear getting diagnosed with pancreas cancer, they wanted my permission to take all the tissue that was left over after the biospsy research was done for additional testing and research (which was a yes from me). They also setup a few more meetings after the surgery to discuss genetic testing for the samples as well. I’m super psysched that they’re doing this so our kids may have a better understanding of potential future risks … or maybe the cancer could be narrowed down to my years of smoking instead of genetics, which has been mentioned as a strong possibility to me already. Evidently, 20-30% of pancreas cancer diagnosis are believed to be due to smoking. I had always just assumed that smoking equated to only lung cancer.
A sincere thank you, once again, for all the wonderful wishes!