It was five years ago to the day on Monday- the Monday before Thanksgiving. I woke up November 19, 2007 feeling fine. However, by 2:00 PM my life changed dramatically. A doctor said the three words that will forever ring in my ears… “You have cancer.”
I was numb as the doctor explained the cancer I had and the prescribed treatment- surgery and followup treatment either radiation, chemotherapy, or both. I assumed that there would be time to process what I was hearing and could investigate options, when the doctor then said, “Paul, we know how this ends.” I was scheduled for surgery first thing the following morning.
In less than a 24 hour period I went from healthy- to cancer patient- to surgery.
The surgery went well as did my subsequent radiation treatment. I was able to avoid chemotherapy. Today I should be five years clear. (I will know for certain following my five year check-up.)
I am forever thankful to Dr. Duncan Harris for diagnosis and surgery- basically saving my life. I am also thankful for The Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital Cancer Center and Dr. Richard Evans for facilitating my radiation treatment. But most of all I am thankful for my wife, Tamara, for caring enough to force me to keep the appointment and standing by as I went through treatment. I am also thankful for my sons, Carter and Ryne, for supporting me throughout treatment and recovery.
I am the luckiest man alive. I think I can now say- I am a survivor.