Good evening everyone! I hope the holidays are going perfect for you all, as they are for us. I pray your lives are full of joy, happiness, and constant love. We have been doing well and enjoying each other’s company to the fullest extent possible. One of the great things about Christmas Eve and day was what I did NOT have to read on Facebook. I did not read any political rants or opinions. I did not have to read anyone complaining about what is wrong instead of what is right. There were no pictures of sadness, loneliness, or discontent. At least on my feed, it was a breath of fresh air to see what you all really think about life. Regardless of your beliefs, it was very refreshing to see pictures of family; of laughter, hugs, and love; posts of what we are grateful for; posts about lives lost but lifting families up in thoughts and prayers. For a few days, I saw glimpses of what this world is REALLY capable of. We will experience tragedy. It is unexpected, horrible, and never welcomed, but if we all portray life as we are over the holidays, we can prove the world a better place. Thank you for all of the smiles!
As for us, we were able to enjoy a very wonderful time with family and friends. We were able to finally meet Sarah, a wonderful person whom my brother Kyle is courting. We were also to meet her wonderful and loving family, as well as see my family at the same time! It was a very enjoyable evening! We are so happy for Sarah and Kyle.
After chemo Round XI began on Monday, we spent Christmas Eve and Christmas morning with Andrea’s parents. We relaxed, ate a perfect dinner, and enjoyed each other’s company. Christmas Day was filled with more love and laughter from my side of the family. It was a perfect 5 days for me to prepare and enhance my body’s ability to recuperate from chemo. Fortunately, the routine flu like symptoms were on schedule and started on Wednesday evening. It gave me the ability to cherish the memories of the pervious days with family and friends. Thank you God, and thank you everyone for the wonderful memories! Here is to many more!
Another topic I want to discuss is a disclaimer I get often. Many people want to help by offering advice, research they found, dietary suggestions, spiritual tips, etc. I appreciate and welcome EVERYTHING! However, a phrase is always added that I believe is unnecessary or unwarranted. Please do not ever feel you are being too forward, too blunt, or too open.. You can never be too open with us, myself especially. We share our journey for a reason. We want you to be an integral part of it. One of the most important things I have learned is I am not alone in learning and growing. This isn’t a disease about me. Everyone is effected. We all have to learn from each other. The journey is very dynamic from many angles and it is always evolving. We need each other and, quite honestly, I need to learn from you more than the reciprocal scenario of myself teaching.
If you have something to share, please share it. I beg of it, whether is a treatment, a story, a supplement, a doctor, etc. We research everything given to us. We have actually used many suggestions and referrals. Some information just re-enforces what we are already doing. One thing I want is that if this disease ends up taking my life, I want it to be known we did everything possible to beat it. For me to achieve that, I cannot do it alone and need all of your input. There is never a piece of advice too small or too out there. I promise it is all needed, and I thank you for all you have done.
A final topic I wish to discuss is comparing life’s problems. Please do not belittle any issue you are going through in your life. Please do not think your problems are insignificant compared to the journey we have embarked upon. A problem in life is a problem in life; a setback is a setback no matter the extent. I want to help. I personally make it point to NEVER reference my life in any advice I offer or any condolences I extend. It is not fair to you, and it is never my intent to imply or suggest your issues (bad day, broken toe, sleepless night, routine surgery, loss of a job, fight with a loved one, etc) are mundane compared to the path that chose us. With that said, you should never feel that way either. It simply is not true, nor will it ever be regardless of our outcome. My point is to never hold back sharing with me. I love to help. I love to experience life through your eyes. I want cry when you cry; get angry when do; and rejoice when you can. It is important to me to give back if and when I can.
Please consider to donate to our Cycle for Survival team. Every single cent helps in finding treatments and a cure towards rare cancers, and, more specifically for our team, angiosarcoma specifically. Tomorrow is the last day to use the 100% tax deduction on this years taxes! It will still work in 2013 too! We welcome the support of any businesses too! Please click on our team page below and donate! Please spread the word for us too!
Our Team Page: http://mskcc.convio.net/goto/AngiosarcomaChicago
Team Name and Captain: Angiosarcoma Awareness; Ryan Humphrey
Just click on “Donate” and follow the steps
Thank you in advance!!!
The second part of Round XI begins tomorrow. Please continue to keep our family in your thoughts and prayers. You are all amazing in the fight against angiosarcoma. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts. Enjoy the day as the gift it is. Enjoy those around you. We truly love you all!