Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Oh, great, another "Look at me, I have cancer" blog


  About ten weeks ago, I was diagnosed with stage 3 colorectal cancer, which apparently isn't as bad as it sounds.  Right out of the gate, the doctor who performed the colonoscopy that revealed the tumour assured me it was "operable, treatable and curable."  
   Of course, I've shared the news with family, work colleagues and close friends and I've mentioned it in passing to some acquaintances.  There's no reason to treat it like a state secret, but neither did I want to go public because: A. people have their own problems and don't need to be burdened with mine, and B. I didn't want to be perceived as a self-indulgent attention seeker.  If I want attention, I'll write a hawkish anti-Islamist blog or tweet some brutally honest common sense about taking personal responsibility to piss off the terminally-offended progressive left.  Works every time.
   However, on a couple of occasions, people whose judgement I respect have suggested I should write about this journey - not so much for therapeutic purposes, but because a lot of what's happened to me over the past two-half-a-half months is so goddam funny, like the time I passed out and fell on the floor during my first consultation/examination with the colorectal surgeon.  There I was, buns up and kneeling on the examination table while he's up my ass with some kind of oncological divining rod, waving it around like he's conducting the triumphant finale to Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture.  It wasn't the pain as much as it was the discomfort that overwhelmed me, and the next thing I knew I woke up on the examination room floor, with the nurse apologizing for not catching me and exclaiming "I've never seen anyone faint THAT fast!"  Meanwhile, the doctor, who happens to be movie star good-looking, tells me to stay down for a couple of minutes until I regain my strength.  I don't often compare my lot in life to the fortunes of others, but I've got to tell you: as I was sitting on a cold hospital floor with my pants and underwear around my ankles under the sympathetic gaze of an impossibly handsome surgeon, I might have felt the slightest twinge of inadequacy.
   Fast forward to today, and I just completed my fourth round of five-day-a-week radiation/chemotherapy treatments.  The radiation room staff was listening to the Beatles on Spotify, and as I was lying on the table getting zapped, I drew inspiration from my great and good friend Dave McGimpsey and thought up a few bogus, cancer-related Beatles song titles, including "Molly's Got a Mass," Tottenham Tumour" and "Bloody Uncle Anus".  They're not in the same league as Dave's "Nigel and His Chippy", "Nasty Colonel Pickles" and "Sammy Likes His Crumblies", but I thought they were pretty good. 
   To summarize, so far, so good.  I feel fine, I haven't lost weight (which for a change is a good thing) and the prognosis is positive.  If I can get through my next appointment with the surgeon without falling off the table and cracking my skull open on the floor, I should be able to stay on the right side of the dirt for a while yet.  I'll keep you posted.  Thanks for listening.
    

19 comments:

  1. I had a bunch of hemorrhoid procedures that were just as much of a hoot, just without the threat of death if I wimped out! Good on you for your attitude Ted!

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  2. Thank you for the giggles - keep your attitude up, I hear that is the way to beat this sh*t.
    xo

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  3. Wow sorry to hear that. Did you ever ask HOW you got this? Was it because of some GMO'd toilet paper?

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  4. Thanks for sharing Ted. Happy to hear you're going to beat the cancer.

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  5. Hi Ted and family,
    Sorry to hear what you've been going through, it sure is the shits!:P My Mom had colon cancer and if you've got to have cancer, you practically can't pick a better one for the best prognosis. My Mom did just great, and after 5 years was "cured". The support of family and friends is essential, but you gotta laugh or you cry ugly! My best.

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  6. Ted, my father - who was a five-time Golden Gloves champion - had a complete colostomy. He used to drive without a seatbelt. When the cops would stop him, he would say "I don't have to wear one." When they asked why, he would pull up his shirt and show them the bag. And laugh like hell when their eyes would roll and they would turn pale. And I thank you for making me laugh. It isn't funny, but we have to fight. And laugh. Get well.

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  7. I think a good way to get through any troublesome affair is with a touch of humor. Glad to see 1. that this hasn't taken away yours Ted 2 that you are on the way to recovery!

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  8. Ted... all the best!
    My sister has gone through it... operation, radiation, chemotherapy... You, like her, have a great outlook... and will get through it even better by sharing your experiences and humour with us. Thanks!!

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  9. Sorry to hear about that Ted, my mom had it 4 years ago and made it thru, she's 83, so I'm sure you can do it too. Good luck, chin up!

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  10. Good thoughts for you Ted and by gosh don't be a Don Scary, wear a helmet to your next exam! Best of luck for a speedy recovery.

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  11. Ted thank you for your honesty ,and as always, your humor...I have been an avid listener of yours for too many years ( don't want to give away my age lol ) and you have always, made me smile /and or, made me think...Keep up the positive attitude it will get you through - laughter is always, the best medicine , Kelly N

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  12. You got this Ted, I have faith in you. On the other hand we have a Dallas Cowboy helmet some where I will dig it out for you. You would not happen to have a pic of the Doc would you? Asking for a friend xoxox

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  13. Last time i heard you tell a funny story about a doctor's office you had been to a chiropractor for some reason and saw on the map of the body all the puncture points there was one between the anus and the scrotum. You said "that must be the one that saves your life". I laughed hard. Fight the good fight my friend.

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  14. Oh God Ted, I just found out. Get well soon brother.... keep up the goiod fight.... Some humor: on the bright side at least you're not Charlie Sheen!

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  15. Very Sorry to hear this Ted, but glad to see you're doing well.
    I wish for you 100% recovery.
    Thank you for the laugh though .... Except Now, I can't get the picture of you with your trousers and underwear down your anckles out of my head. Nevermind the anal probe 😳. Oy
    Take good care Mr. Bird, Hugs

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  16. Thank you for sharing your story with us with your usual wit. I wish you a speedy recovery for recover you will since attitude is half the battle. And I sincerely hope that someone will get the courage to seek medical help if they recognize themselves as possibly having a medical situation that needs to be diagnosed and treated. Godspeed Ted.

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  17. Well... Ted, thanks for the honesty and the humour... I may be joining you in your journey as I'm going through an "episode" of my own within the same... Well... Realm. First colonoscopy in a few days. Definitely relate to the inadequacy thing... but my doctor was movie star good looks of the female persuasion... Definitely embarrassing and humbling!!!

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  18. You will beat this Mr. Bird! Thank you for your continuing wit and humour.

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