I am changing the name of this blog, both in order to reflect a new reality and to declare a new determination.
When I started the blog, it was to mark the publication of my book, The Man Who Learned to Walk Three Times. It is a book and an accomplishment that I am proud of and that makes me smile inside and out. Learning to Walk is hard and demands attention and true effort. Learning to Walk is difficult and problematic and deserves a record, an account.
Now I have a new goal, a new determination, a new milestone.
For a couple of months now I have been experiencing difficulty with swallowing. I saw doctors, took tests and for a while wrestled with the whole shitty idea of being ill yet again in a life filled with illness. At times, especially in moments where even taking another bite filled with me with dread, it seemed too much. But I would always come back to my touchstone point. Life is what it is. You deal with it as it comes at you.
Today, I was told I have cancer of the esophagus. There is still much to be determined, still tests to be done, treatments to be considered. But I know one thing. This will not defeat me.
As our truly delightful Jane noted today, this is the third time I have been diagnosed with cancer. 12 years ago I was told I had colon cancer. I had the surgery and it turned out the diagnosis was wrong. 6 years ago, a doctor made a preliminary diagnosis that I had a virulent blood cancer. Within 24 hours he had changed his mind and said he was wrong. In both cases misjudgments were made but in both cases I was determined that I would beat whatever was happening to me. In both instances, I had to peer inside and ask what I was capable of.
This diagnosis might be more accurate but it is just a diagnosis, it is not determinant, it is not the final word. Where we go from here is partly up to the medical system and partly up to me.
This will not defeat me.
Wrestling with cancer is hard, difficult and problematic. It demands true attention and true effort. It deserves a record, an account.
This blog is now known as The Man Who Beat Cancer Three Times.