Monday, May 14, 2018


Friday,May6/2016,I went for a routine colonoscopy that dramatically changed my life. I was there because.a  friend ,whose daughter in law is a physician, had recommended he undergo a colonoscopy. Thinking that was good advice,I arranged to have one myself.
Thus, I found myself being wheeled into an operating room,where I was explained the procedure and given a mild sedative. The nurse, in good spirits ,knowing I was a P.hD.,explained I was getting the VIP service,and then promptly fluffed my pillow.
 The procedure was painless and proceededwithout incident. Little did I know what  awaited me. After I was taken to the recovery area ,I was told to dress and wait for the Doctor..When the Doctor arrived heasked me to follow him to his office. This was not good.
He told me there was a 50 percent chance thatI had colon rectal cancer. The results of the biopsy  would confirm or deny it. I knew then I had cancer.
 I was shocked. It felt like my whole life was flashing before me.Thoughts of death dominated.What to do,who to tell and how to cope seemed overwhelming.. I returned home,where alone, I no longer had to play the strong role. I let it out ,crying uncontrollably,for what seemed like minutes but was actually seconds.Somehow, I regained control and gradually begin to address the issues I faced.
 I contacted my support system, my family and friends,whom I had been there over the years. Many stood with me during my 2 year ordeal, however others whom I had expected to be there, simply went their own way.At a time of crisis you quickly learn who has your back. Surprising I met a number of compassionate and caring people,including a remarkable cadre of cancer healthcare professionals,whom I have the upmost respect, and I proudly call colleagues today.
 Secondly I utilized all of my personal and professional contacts to get the best medical advice possible, including  circulating my medical file to other cancer centers in Canada. .Although I choose to have my surgery and treatment in Ottawa I did not preclude the possibility of going elsewhere.
Thirdly I did my own due diligence. I spoke to friends,colleagues and any medical professional I respected. I researched colon-cancer on the internet and became very familiar with my options.
Looking  back 2 years, after having endured 2 operations,chemotherapy and 30 radiation sessions I am pleased  to report I am now cancer free.
Psychologically I am a changed person.As my eldest son, who recently went through a coronary by-pass surgery  says,"when you face your own immortality, ever day is a blessing".You know who and  what are your priorities in life.
As I continue to cope with the new limitations placed upon me,I remain grateful that I am able to live a full and meaningful life.

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