Posts Tagged ‘faith’

L’Chaim: To Life.

March 10, 2015

First, a piece of good news from last week.  I qualified for a new trial, an immunotherapy trial at that.  Some how during the pre-qualifying EKG test for the PRI parameter was good, as well as my blood test.  So I am in for now.

The doctor explained to me how it works.  This new trial involves two drugs: a chemotherapy agent that suppress the growth of tumor and an immunotherapy agent that boost my immune system at the cell level to attack cancer.  Picture this: two wrestlers, one holding the cancer cell in a grapple hold and the other, pumped up with steroids, beating the sh*t out of the cancer.  Hopefully, it works because the chemo drug to be used is for colon cancer, which fits my profile.

I still have to do a final test (CT scan, EKG and blood work) again before starting the treatment which is scheduled on March 30 and 31.  By then I have been weaned out of my previous trial drug and ready.  I pray I pass.

Speaking of prayers, what better place to pray than in Jerusalem and Rome.  I leave for the Holy Land today and I have been looking forward to this trip.  A new journey of self-discovery and prayers.  I am also going there to run the Jerusalem half marathon on Friday, March 13.    Am I ready?  Hardly.  This is one race I am full of anxiety.  Since being “booted” out the trial, my mind has been filled with tumor growths, things to do, and ITB rehabs resulting in half-hearted training.  My longest run so far was 8 miles on the Alter-G at 60% my full weight.  Normally, you need to hit at least 10 miles with confidence for a decent 13.1 (21k) mile finish at full weight.  We will see.  I don’t do well with hills too and that’s Jerusalem for you.  Full or half, marathons are unforgiving; like life.  You take what is given and you just have to have absolute faith to carry you over.  Faith is what I need.  Peace of mind is what I seek.  Prayer is my mantra.

Here is my prayer.

Lord, I am in your ‘hood.  You have walked the well worn trails of Jerusalem and its country side, or perhaps have tried to out run your Roman captors.  I have come far to run, pray, and seek peace within.  If you are there, just carry me across the finish line this one last time.  I carry a big burden in my chest much like the cross You carried on your shoulders.  I asks you keep me safe so I bc can be with my family (for a while longer).

L’chaim! (To Life!)




P.S.  JamieM (Novacare), this one is for you…and Alice the Alter-G.

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The women in my life.

May 13, 2013

YYesterday was Mother’s Day.  So I started my day with a phone call to my mom.  She is in Manila right now but will be coming to the US for a visit.  I am so lucky that I still have my mom around for she has been a guiding force in my life and while I was growing up.

Being first born I was dotted upon by my mother.  At times, she still does it once in a while like promising to cook my favorite dish when I come for a visit.  Lately, she has this thing about never ending mass offerings for my continued health.  I always make a joke that my name has been called so often during prayer offerings at her church that I deserve to be cannonized or at least a statue.  One time I attended mass at her church and it seems half the church knows my name and my cancer story, and I don’t even know them.

She has tremendous faith and when I took a turn early this year, I could not bear to disappoint her nor tell her.  More so, I carried this guilt that I will not be able to see her and do proper goodbyes, if ever.  I was more worried about her when things are left unfinished.  But now, I am on the road to recovery again and Mother’s Day to me has a different meaning.  

 I often said that each day is a gift and should be appreciated; Mother’s Day or not.  Important relationships should be renewed with righteous meaning.  If you look at it each day is unique and brings unique opportunities.  I am not the same person last Mother’s Day too.  Last year is gone and even yesterday, a memory.  What is important is now, you, me, and this moment.

Aside from my mother, I should pay tribute to another strong woman in my life, my wife.  I am in awe how my wife has managed to keep my family together, balance her nursing career, and satisfy my needy medical needs.  I must admit I am not an easy person to get along with when I have my moments.  Chemo treatments does not make it easy when I am totally stubborn and insensitive.  But she sees beyond this, she would come home from work with vivid stories of patients far more advance with their cancers or patients who have neglected themselves or by others.  Sort of telling me that I am blessed in my current predicament.  I am blessed.  I am surrounded by strong women who looks after me.

 I even have strong women-friends who can beat the sh*t out of me.  Yeah, you know who you are…hehe.  

 On chemo treatments.

So I am back doing chemo treatments again.  I started up again last Tuesday.  Somehow, chemo has become part of my lifestyle along with all its side-effects.  I no longer complaint about it but have come to accept the necessary inconvenience it causes.  Some people hate traffic congestions and other pet peeves; mine is I hate chemo the most.  In the past, I tried to demonize it hoping it will go away but it didn’t.  Now, I just look at it as my new normal or part of my life.  Why make it any bigger than what it is already; just accept it and move on, right?


P.S.  Thanks to my friend MikeE who sent me training materials on Python in DVD.  Have you ever tried studying when your brain is soaked with chemo; not good.

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