Well look at what you’ve gone and done to yourself. The room just went silent as the doctor said you have bladder cancer. You’ve done a lot of dumb and crazy things in your life, but avoiding regular checkups was the dumbest. You’re looking at the shocked expressions on your family’s faces. A million questions are running through your mind. Then you’ll collect yourself and ask what’s next.
Your wife will become the educator, always doing research on the next steps. Your biggest challenge will be convincing family and friends not to tell your mother that you have cancer. Being 91-years-old with health challenges of her own, she does not need to be worried. You and your mother survived your tour of duty in Vietnam, and you’ll survive this bout with cancer.
Lean on your FAITH, pack your PATIENCE and take your sense of HUMOR. You’ll quiet a church group by telling them that you felt so blessed to have gotten cancer. God chose you, so that you would have a testimony to help someone else. These opportunities to speak before doctors, patients, caregivers, researchers and first responders will lead to a bigger one. You’ll go to Capitol Hill and work as a congressional reviewer… not bad for a bowlegged fella from a small town in West Virginia.