Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Happy New Year

Well, to say the least it's been an interesting 2009. Early March I find out 'aggressive, high risk' prostate cancer is attacking my body. So after radiation and then surgery, we find out my PSA is still high showing evidence the cancer has spread.

the good news is scans showed up negative so wherever it is, it's hiding.
so hormone therapy is working, the last PSA was "less than 0.01". awesome.

So I exit 2009 very thankful for overwhelming support from family friends, coworkers, neighbors....it's a blessing knowing so many people care. Thank you all for the help, thoughts and prayers.

Let's go into 2010 optimistic that medical science will develop a cure for prostate cancer. I believe we're not too far away. In fact, this week a study came out....read on.

U.S. Cancer researchers have discovered an antibody called “F77″, which, when injected into mice, will bond with prostate cancer tissue and “initiate direct cell death” in it, according to a new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science. In initial trials with mice “F77″ bonded with tissue where prostate cancer was the primary cancer in almost all cases (97 per cent) and in tissue cores where the cancer had metastasized around 85 per cent of the time.” Those are astounding rates, with a high percentage of success even attacking advanced stage cancer cells, while causing no harm to normal tissue or tumor tissues in other parts of the body at all.

Sign me up for the trial!

Well, another decade done (holy smokes time flies)
Here's to a great 2010!

Be safe and make today great.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

the best Xmas present ever

I just got off the phone with the nurse and she had my results from my PSA test yesterday.
talk about fast!

she said and I quote "the report says the PSA is 'less than o.o1' which is as close to zero as it gets"

Awesome news and it means the treatments are working.
While 2009 started with the 'you have cancer' news....it's ending on a very positive note.

Here's to a great 2010!

All the best.

Health update

Hey everyone, yesterday was another visit to the oncologist for another PSA blood test and a shot of Lupron. Not the kind of 'shot' I prefer but it's doing it's job. In my younger days the shot would come in a short little glass but hell I'm too old for that now.

Good conversation with Dr. Reza, he's pleased with how the treatments are going and so are we. Tolerating the side effects is easier than getting fitted for a new suit and a pine box. Hold the flower arrangements for a while, this old dog is planning on being around a while.

Funny thing at the Dr. yesterday...being in sales the last week or two of each quarter and for the year are a little stressful as we chase down deals to get them closed. One deal in particular this year meant a lot to me which was a new deal with the PGA Tour. My rep who was working it needed this deal to put him well over 200% for Q4 but more importantly achieve 'Inner Circle' which is something you don't want to miss. So while I was at the office we were waiting for the contract to get signed and faxed.

The nurse took my blood pressure....it was 160 over 108...pretty damn high and she was surprised. Then I told her about the deal, sales, etc and it all made sense :)

We got the deal, my team member reached Inner Circle and my bp is much lower.

Here's wishing you all a very happy holidays season. I'll most likely be back before we close out 2009.

Make it a great day

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Are you ready?

Man, the holidays are here and this might be the worst year for me in terms of getting things done. Not enough lights on the house, a little behind on gifts...seems like every year I'm scrambling.

How about you? Some last minute shopping? To lower frustration, shop online and choose FedEx, avoid the malls.

Okay, speaking of online, tis the season to get yourself a tax deduction and donate to your favorite nonprofit organization. Yes, only 9 days left help your tax situation and more importantly, help those in need. If you don't have a favorite charity, let me know, I know of some awesome orgs that are doing great things.

So are you ready for 2010? Wasn't it just not too long ago we were celebrating 2000. Hell, the world was going to come to an end if everyone wasn't Y2K compliant. Hilarious.

2009 has been an interesting year for yours truly and hopefully a great one for you.

more tomorrow.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Where did the year go?

Can you believe it's Dec 14th already? Better get all your shopping done soon or old St. Nick will bring you a lump of coal.

On the health front, still feeling good all things considered...could manage to lose a few lbs but I'm going to wait until January 1, it will be fun until then :).

Still having more hot flashes than I expected and will be discussing with the Dr. next week when I see him again. Hopefully there is a way to reduce the frequency.

It's an exciting time of year, Holiday season, Hockey season in full swing, NFL is down to the last 3 weeks of the regular season, then the playoffs, NCAA basketball is rolling...fun everywhere you turn. Go Packers!

Lastly, do yourself a favor and go find your local children's choir. I'm guessing they'll have a holiday concert you can attend. My two kids are in the Charlotte Children's Choir and it's special to see a group of kids from all walks of life come together for a great performance. Go find the kids concert and attend, you'll be glad you did.

Later

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Thanksgiving - a little late


I hope everyone had a relaxing a fun Thanksgiving, it's a great time to reflect on how fortunate we are and i know personally, I have a lot to be thankful for. A great spouse, two great kids, dog, cat, great job, great friends and health. Yes, my health.

A lot of people might wonder why I feel my health is something to be thankful for when I have cancer but I believe I have cancer for a reason. A good friend of mine just celebrated 9 years cancer free after battling breast cancer. She told me I would exit my cancer battle a different person and she' right. I'm much more vocal about prostate cancer awareness after learning through my process that 1 out of 6 men will get PC. Worse yet is the lack of research going on, especially for the 'high-risk', aggressive kind that I have.

I just participated in a month long event that promoted the awareness of PC and also served as a fundraiser with the proceeds going to the Lance Armstrong Foundation among others. Check out my 'Movember' page. http://us.movember.com/mospace/your-donation-page

Oh, one last thing, if you ever get the chance to watch a space shuttle land, go for it. The family spent thanksgiving in Cocoa Beach, FL and we had the great experience of watching the Atlantis Shuttle land. very cool.....next is to watch a launch.

Make it a great week peeps :)

Sunday, November 29, 2009

how low can you go, second try :))

the PSA results are in....drum roll please.....and the results are 0.03!

Woo Hoo, the treatments are doing exactly what we want them to do, stop the cancer cells in their tracks. It's great news and gives me a ton of positive energy.

Thanks to everyone for your continued support.

another post soon, recapping our thanksgiving vacation.

later

how low can you go

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Another PSA

Hey everyone, hope this post finds you well and getting reading for a big Thanksgiving Feast.
YUM! Holy man, I can't personally wait because my appetite is insatiable right now. Can anyone point me to the nearest Weight Watchers meeting?

today, another visit with the Medical Oncologist and another blood test. Dr. Reza fully expects the number to drop again from 0.94 to an even lower number. We'll find out tomorrow or monday and I'll let you all know the results.

We did talk about side effects and unfortunately there are a few. I already mentioned the appetite and the weight thing but we mainly talked about the hot flashes. Man, do I have a full appreciation for what women go through, amen sisters, you have my full respect. Holy shit, the HF's have been full on lately, especially at night which makes it particularly difficult to sleep. One minute you wake up in a full sweat, sheets are soaking, then next you're freezing. With all the tossing and turning, shedding covers then diving under them for warmth, I'm getting about 3 hours of total rest each night. not good

so, I'm trying some Flaxseed Oil to hopefully tone down the HF's. We'll see.

Okay my friends, go have yourselves an AWESOME Thanksgiving, me and the fam are heading down to cocoa beach/cape canaveral which should be very cool. Oh, wish us luck on the weather, if it's good, the space shuttle will land in FL on friday and we hope to watch.

All the best

Friday, November 20, 2009

Stephanie Spielman

unfortunately this post is a sad one, I just learned that Stephanie Spielman died yesterday at the young age of 42 after a 12 year battle with breast cancer. Having lived in Columbus, OH for 12 years, it was during that time she was diagnosed and waged her battle publicly, she was an inspiration. Stephanie was the wife of Chris Spielman, former Buckeye, Detroit Lion and current announcer on ESPN.

You can read more at this link.

http://www.dispatch.com/live/content/local_news/stories/2009/11/20/0_SPIELMAN_--_paper_story.ART_ART_11-20-09_A1_JGFO3TQ.html?sid=101

another post coming soon

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

A salute to all Veterans

Here is a salute to all Veterans who have served our country and protected our freedom. I am grateful to live in this great country where our freedom is envied by others.

I ask that you reach out to 3 or more veterans and thank them for their dedication, commitment and sacrifices they have made so that the 300M+ people in the USA can go to sleep each night knowing we are protected, guarded by our troops.

Also find your own way to honor the fallen heros, those who have perished defending our freedom, may their families be blessed with peace.

I wonder why Veterans Day isn't celebrated more often? Why just once per year? Why not 4 times, once per quarter. If our freedom is so important to us and the sacrifices our veterans make is so great, why not honor them more often.

When I travel, there is always someone on my flight who is in uniform either coming home or heading out to serve and protect. I make it a point to thank them for their commitment and service, we all should.

That's it for today, reach out to the Veterans you know and thank them.

later,

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

more side effects

hi everyone, it's been a little more than 3 months since my surgery but seems a lot longer than that to be honest. Did I mention some of the side effects of the hormone treatments? They are kicking in....the latest, weight gain.

Exiting the hospital I was 192 lbs, high for me and then within a month that included a daily dose of walking, I was down to 175 lbs, a much more comfortable 'fighting weight'.

Now that I've been on the hormone treatments, it's starting to climb again, up to 182. The cravings seem to last all day and I'm never satisfied. The thought of a diet has crossed my mind but I actually am already on one...a see-food diet, I see food and eat it! (yeah, lame humor). It's tough, I've never been known to shy away from food and over the years it's been a pretty easy to lose 5-10, even up to 15 lbs in pretty short order. Not any more.

Guess I need to get focused.

Switching gears....the kids had a concert last weekend and it was awesome. For those of you who don't know, Rachel and Bradley are in the Charlotte Children's Choir and love it. It's amazing how well the kids come together, learn the new songs, some of which are sung partly in swahili or hebrew and they nail the performance. I'm incredibly proud of them.

Gotta go and I promise to post more often.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

and the new PSA is......

...exactly what we had hoped for, a big drop. The PSA is now 0.94....woo hoo!
As a reminder, it was 8.35 a month ago which was considered high by all standards, especially when you consider my entire pelvic area received radiation and the prostate is long gone from surgery.

so the hormone treatments are working as we wanted and I'll go in again in a month for another PSA and then probably every 3 months after that for checkups. The only downside so far have been some minor side effects but nothing that can't be dealt with.

My HT (short for hormone treatments) are Lupron shots and daily Casodex pills and they suppress testosterone, which is the fuel for prostate cancer.

When your testosterone is being throttled, there are bound to be side effects. So, with the help of Lupron and Casodex, looks like I'll be spending some time aboard the Good Ship Menopause with all the physical baggage that entails. It’s a trip that most men don’t expect to take.

The side effect that surprised me most were the hot flashes — not that I got them, I was expecting that, but by how intense they were. I've been having them more frequently and it's obvious when I do....I'm flush and sweat profusely. Not too fun when it's during a meeting which fortunately hasn't been too often.

Given the choice between hot flashes or having cancer ravage my body...it's a no brainer.
So for those of you I work with, have fun with me about this...it's about all I can do at this point.

Again, as I've said all along, THANK YOU to you all for your support.

All the best

Thursday, October 22, 2009

new PSA coming

Hey I know, I know, my blogging is getting slow, sorry about that but I warned you I'm a rookie at this.

So today, another Dr. visit and I have to tell you it's kind of funny. You check in and they say 'how are you doing?'. Then the nurse calls you in and says "good to see you again". It's good manners, real polite but sometimes I want to respond by laughing and saying.. "It's good to see you too, I just wish it was not in this office and more like the grocery store".

Are you kidding me! my goal is to not stop in every month to get poked, prodded, pricked with a needle and then asked, how are you doing?. Ah, sorry for the rant but i find it kind of ironic.

Okay, more blood drawn today and I'll get the PSA results tomorrow (hopefully, you know, another 'do the test, then wait'). Dr Reza is pretty confident the PSA level will go down by a good margin so we'll see, as a reminder it last was 8.35.

I most likely won't blog again until Sunday, my son Bradley and I are camping with the Cub Scouts this weekend, being a Webelo this is our third year. Forecast is a little iffy, 50% chance of rain friday afternoon through saturday evening. Last year we got soaked so hoping we get the 50% of un-rain.

hope you had a great week, make it a great weekend!

Bob

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Health update

okay, newest update on the health front....so to recap a little history:

- Feb 28, first PSA = 40.6
- Mar 6, second PSA = 58
- Mar 16, biopsy - confirmed, prostate cancer
- Radiation from 5/19-6/30, total of 30 treatments
- surgery, Aug 3rd
- miles walked since surgery = 156
- post surgery PSA (hoping for .1 or .2) = 7.9 (high)
- started hormone treatment on 9/30
- next PSA taken, 10/22

so, I've started 'stage 3' of my treatments and it's proactive so we can starve the cancer cells that appear to still be in my body. The hormone treatment should drop the PSA dramatically so we're anxious for the results coming next friday.

the beat-down continues

I promise, I'll have more regular posts.

Later

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Whoa! I've been quiet....

Sorry about that, just pretty busy.

last weekend we had a chance to visit great friends in Columbus, OH and it was a perfect weekend. 60's and sunny...pretty rare for Columbus really but timed great. My buddy Kevin and I went to the Ohio State-Wisconsin game which was great. We started with a non-traditional tailgate which included fresh fried lake Erie perch...freakin awesome!

The game was pretty interesting and OSU was happy their defense and special teams showed up, otherwise they would have been beat. final score, OSU 31, Wisconsin, 13.

then we spend part of sunday 'Geocaching'. I hadn't heard of this but you have to check it out. They have a great iPhone app that makes it great. It's basically a high-tech scavenger hnt but anyone can 'place' an item and post it to the web for others to find. You can search for 'Caches' close to you and some can be relocated and the web tracks where they have 'traveled'. check it out, it's fun. www.geaocaching.com

On the health front, feeling very good. I go in for another PSA test next week thursday and will have an update on friday as to whether the hormone treatments are working.

That's it for now, sorry about the delay in posts, I'll check in again soon.

Be well.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Pints for Prostates

I attended a fundraising event last light that was a ton of fun. 'Pints for Prostates' are events held across America, usually organized by a local advocate and it's in conjunction with an organization called UsTOO International. You can find them and more information about these events at www.ustoo.org/pints. check it out.

So last night's event was held at a newer micro brewery here in Charlotte, the Olde Mecklenburg Brewery. There was live music, brats, a brewery tour and of course pints :)

There were about 75 people there and it was fun, most of all, events like this help raise awareness that 1 in 6 men get prostate cancer. All proceeds help fund education, research and patient support.

The odds of a man getting prostate cancer are greater than the odds of a woman getting breast cancer yet there isn't enough awareness or research being done to find a cure.

I'll keep raising some 'pints for prostates', maybe you could too.

See you next post

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Great news

Not one to beat around the bush, the scans are clean....Woo Hoo!
We met with my medical oncologist today and both the bone and CT scans were clean, no cancer showing up, which is awesome news. Not sure why the PSA is showing up so high and it could be a false positive or due to the fact there is still some cancer lingering.

So, to take a proactive approach, I've started hormone treatments and then we'll check my PSA every month. Dr. expects it to drop from 8.35 down to "almost nothing" in the first month.
We're going to take away the food source of the cancer.

Understandably, we're jazzed.

To top it off, on the business side we finished our 3rd quarter with a bang and I'm incredibly proud of my team. When the dust settles, it looks like we'll finish around 171% against quota, the team was rockin.

But, as those of you know, in the sales game, you get about 8 hours to celebrate (and most of those you're sleeping) and then it's back to chasing another quarterly quota. Fun stuff.

another post coming tomorrow, I attended a fundraising event tonight and will share more later.

See ya

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

more tests...

We met with a Medical Oncologist today, Dr. Reza, sticking with our step by step approach. Good guy, communicated well and our homework/reading has paid off by way of having a good understanding of what is discussed.

So, the next step is to repeat the CT Scans of the pelvis and torso areas and also the bone scan.
Both will be done in the next 3 days. Dr. Reza is concerned by the high PSA post operation so he wants to get after the 'micro cells' that have spread. After the results of the scans are done, Dr. Reza will 're-stage' my cancer. We have no evidence that I have metastatic cancer so with the tests we'll be looking to see if the cancer has spread to the bones or other lymph nodes.

Starting next week I will start hormone therapy which most likely will last 2-3 years.
Once the treatments start, I will go back each month for a PSA check and what surprised me is the Dr. expects the PSA to drop immediately, first month, he would want it below 1 after the first month. Again, to refresh, my PSA, pre-surgery was 58 which is off the charts. My PSA post surgery was 7.9 which is considered high.

By taking away the food source of the cancer (shutting off the testosterone), the goal is to stop the growth and spreading. Hormone therapy won't kill the cancer, just stop the growth.

Dr. Reza wants to be aggressive with the hormone treatment and I agree.
They took blood today, another PSA, results will be in tomorrow.

more news tomorrow.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Next step in treatment

First we did radiation, then surgery, stupid cancer is still sticking around so it's on to the next attack.

We'll learn more of the details after tomorrow/Tuesday, Sept 22 when we meet with the medical oncologist to discuss hormone therapy and possibly chemo.

One thing I'll want to do is get another bone scan done, maybe another CT scan to try and determine if this has spread to the bone and/or other lymph nodes. My surgeon speculates that it's quite possible other lymph nodes are carrying cancer and in a previous conversation with the medical oncologist from Duke, he indicated my original CT scan showed slight enlargement of 'aortic lymph nodes'.

More news later.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Happy 80th Birthday Mr. Palmer

If you don't already know, today is the 80th birthday of Arnold Palmer, the King, the working mans golfer. For over 50 years he has graced the golfing world with his 'go for broke' style of play and his down to earth honesty and genuine personality.

Arnie as he's affectionately known is also a prostate cancer survivor.

Mr. Palmer, Happy 80th Birthday and here's to many, many more.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Surprise, Surprise

Well, at the beginning of this journey I told myself "don't get too high, don't get too low", just stay positive. It couldn't have been better advice.

I had blood drawn last week to establish my new baseline PSA and expected a negligible number like 0.5 or 1.1.....something really low. Hey, let's face it, the prostate is gone, what the hell could produce 'PSA = prostate specific antigen' if it's gone, right?

Well, my PSA came back at 7.9 which is high and it means that the joy in mudville is gone, at least temporarily. Scoring high on a test in school is good, scoring high on a PSA test, not good.

There is no way to tell at this point if some prostate cancer cells may have/had escaped the pelvic area. So unfortunately this isn't going to be perfect.....so now what?

The team of Dr's are recommending starting hormone therapy immediately to try to starve out any cancer cells within the body. Cool, I get to meet another Dr.! (actually, the only Dr. I want to see after all this is done is Dr. Pepper)

I haven't talked to the Dr's yet, just corresponding with the nurse withing the clinical trial group so I'll probably have another update soon.

Later

Sunday, September 6, 2009

New PSA

Well, Monday Sept. 7th will be 5 weeks since surgery so last week I had blood drawn for my new PSA baseline. Given that they've taken taken out the prostate and everything resembling cancer, my PSA should show up as almost 0 or 0.1, something low.

Then, I will go ever 3 months for a PSA test to watch to see if the level stays the same or starts increasing. We don't want it to increase because if it does, that means there are cancer cells within the body they couldn't find or remove. But we won't go there.

Labor day weekend, very grateful to be working for a great organization and have the ability to make an impact not only within the org but more importantly with our nonprofit clients. Very rewarding.

Last night we went to a 50th birthday party for a great guy in our neighborhood and what a blast. He hired an incredible band that included, one of the best saxophone players I've heard accompanied by bass player, drums, keyboard and bongo drums. You had to hold yourself back if you didn't want to dance because the music just captured your inner groove. They were loud and awesome.

So with the extra day off, I guess I'll get some more yard work done.

BTW, feeling great, thanks to all for the positive thoughts and prayers.

Now go have some fun!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Sept is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month

yes, Prostate Cancer has it's own month on the calendar to raise awareness. And it's a good thing too because prospect cancer effects 1 in every 6 men and I still think the understanding is terribly low. I myself didn't understand as much as I should have given the fact that 2 years ago my younger brother was diagnosed with PC and had surgery.

One big reason the awareness isn't where it should be is because guys don't like to talk about some of the side effects of treatment. Why? Because the side effects of treatment of the disease strikes at the very heart of our clich├ęd, John Wayne image of the American male. Impotence and incontinence, fatigue, etc just don’t sell pickup trucks and the King of Beers, hoss. These symptoms are not some mere midlife crisis — more like a change-of-life crisis —. They shake the very pillars of what we talk about when we talk about being a man.

So that's why you, yes you, should reach out to as many men in your life who are 40 years or older and strongly encourage them to go get a simple blood test. The old thought was only men over 50 but in my discussions with doctors, they tend to lean towards the age of 40 for when men should get their PSA checked....especially if there is some family history.

Help raise awareness, reach out to a loved one.

Make it a great day!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

D-Day, the pathology report

Today I had the follow up appointment from surgery to get the staples and catheter out and to review the pathology report with the Dr and determine next steps.

first, staples and other came out fine, that was the easy part.
In the conversation with the surgeon, he's 99% sure he got 99% of the cancer out. Only one lymph node was positive and the belief is that there may be microcells contained within the pelvic cavity.

So, what next. Well, my surgeon works collaboratively with radiation oncologists and medical oncologists and my case will be discussed at the next 'tumor panel' meeting. The initial thoughts are maybe some radiation and hormone treatments. I'll know more in a couple of weeks which way the thinking is going.

4 weeks from today I'll get my PSA test taken to establish a new baseline and then it will be checked every 3 months afterwards for the first year.

Fighting cancer takes a lot out of you...I'm exhausted...but maybe that's just from the long day of travel back and forth.

Thanks again to everyone for your continued support, it's very much appreciated.

Oh, I can't sign off without asking two questions (feel free to post a comment/response)

1. Did Tiger Woods choke this past weekend?
2. Is Brett Favre nuts?

later

Friday, August 14, 2009

feeling strong

It's been 11 days since surgery and I'm feeling really, really good. I'm starting to spend more and more time at the desk, working yet still get plenty of rest and exercise.

Speaking of exercise, for the past 8 days I've walked 2+ miles each day and early on kind of shocked some of the neighbors at my early mobility. One byproduct of walking is weight loss which many of your know before surgery, I was a great candidate to lose 10+ lbs. Currently I've lost 11 lbs in 11 days and really feel good.

I'll be back 100% to work starting monday, still no travel yet but full speed helping my team.

I attribute my solid recovery to the many, many thoughts and prayers by everyone and on behalf of the Evans Family, we're extremely grateful.

Make sure you watch some of the PGA Championship this weekend, Tiger is off to a strong start and has won 2 events in a row coming into this major. He's an amazing athlete, our generation is pretty fortunate to be able to watch history in the making.

Make it a great weekend!

Monday, August 10, 2009

making progress

Hey everyone, quick update on my progress post-surgery. Things are going well, actually a little better than I anticipated. Since arriving home last week wednesday, I've made a point to walk every day since it's the best activity I can do.....hell it's the only thing they'll let me know :)

Friday-Sunday I've walked 2 miles each day and of course a little tired but that's to be expected.
The Dr. said fatigue would stick around for 2 weeks since I lost just shy of a unit of blood during surgery. The good news about that is the Dr. gave me the green light to eat as much red meat as I want for two weeks....it's been good so far.

If you know me, you know I'm itching to get back to work 100%, I'm not good about just sitting around 'resting'.

Hope you all are great and as always, I appreciate the positive thoughts and prayers, they've helped.

Make it a great week!

Friday, August 7, 2009

ouch

man it's not easy after surgery, so much bloating I feel like the Goodyear Blimp. Trying to 'get the plumbing' working afterwards is more of a challenge with more pain than I had anticipated, even with pain meds.
the goofy thing about pain meds is they are your friend enemy at the same, while they give you pain relief, they cause more pain because they bind you up.

Starting to make a little progress so that's a good thing. Had a 101 fever last night but back to normal today.

The past two days I've walked about 2 miles each and it serves two purposes, preventing blood clots and moving things through the 'plumbing'.

while I know the best thing for me to do is rest, it's really hard to fight the temptation to do something work related. But, that's where Kathy and my mom come in, they watch me like a hawk so I don't drift into my home office.

One byproduct of recuperation is the time to read, time to pick up the book again.

later

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

It's done

no more prostate, it's gone. As a refresher, we found a good team of doctors at Duke Comprehensive Cancer Center so sunday night Kathy and I drove up, had dinner, relaxed. Surgery on monday took a little over 2 hours and I didn't get a room until 6 hours later....so I was stuck in Post-op. oh well, things could have been worse.

Monday night was a bitch, no sleep because every 2 hours someone is coming into the room to take vital signs, draw blood, etc. Tuesday I was running on fumes, barely able to keep my eyes open so a quick nap here and there helped.

Tuesday night was much better pretty fair night of sleep but still playing catch up.
Wednesday, discharged and sent home. I was feeling pretty good this morning and figured I could get more sleep in my own home with less interruptions.

The drive home was bad, we were instructed to stop 3 times, get out and walk to avoid blood clots. The worst part were the potholes/rough roads...they tensed up my body something fierce.
Just took a walk with Bradley and that felt good but tiring.

I'm bushed, more posts coming.

Bob

Friday, July 31, 2009

Good pre-op meetings

We spent most of yesterday (thursday) at Duke Medical Center getting all of the pre-op work done including a meeting with the surgeon. I'm feeling good about the surgeon and the team for the operation on monday.

During the testing we had a great conversation with the nurse, who by the way was hilarious and fun to talk to and most of all very reassuring and confident which was great. I was a little hyped, in fact, the BP was 144/100 so more than a little elevated. :)

Monday is surgery, around 10:45am eastern time. It's time to get this shit out, rehab and get back to normal.

Maybe another post sunday night.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Big Week

It's a big week, Tuesday is the follow up visit with the radiologist, should be just a formality.
Thursday I head up to Duke for a visit with the surgeon and a pre-op appointment that will include all of the testing work in addition to meeting the anesthesiologist.

My folks fly in from Wisconsin on Wednesday night and will be here for a few weeks helping out which will be great.

Kathy and I are heading up to Durham Sunday afternoon with surgery on Monday, August 3rd.
I'm guessing this week will go by fast.

I'll be lining up an email distribution list for Kathy to send out a note after the surgery.
shortly thereafter I'll be begging her to bring the laptop to the hospital, that is if they have internet connectivity.

look for another post later this week after the pre-op appointment.

Monday, July 20, 2009

So close...

What a great Open Championship golf tournament. Tom Watson, 59 years young leads all 4 rounds and almost pulled it off. Incredible performance for someone who is the best links golf player in my generation. Is it time for Lee Trevino or Johnny Miller to make a run at the PGA Championship?

Surgery is two weeks from today and at exactly this time I'll be under the knife.
I haven't really thought about surgery much until this weekend, so I've been doing more reading on what to expect. In all honesty, I'm getting a little anxious to get this stuff out of my body and move on.

Most likely I'll be out for maybe two weeks but I have a hunch I'll be going nuts and wanting to work the latter part of the second week. We'll see.

Time now to go sell something,

Make it a great week!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Holy mackerel, it's been too long since my last post. Hope you're doing great, I am.
The good news of the day is I'm sitting in Austin, 104 degrees (a little cool today) at sales training.
It was a great meeting, especially our guest speaker who focused on Presenting to Win and overall sales presence. Many, many takeaways to help me improve.

Don't look now but summer is whizzing by, it's mid July and my wife is already talking about getting stuff for the school year. Where does the time go.

The Open Golf Tournament started today and go ol Tom Watson, 5 time Open champion is in the hunt. See, don't count out the old guys :)

countdown to surgery has begun, 17 days to go with a couple of Dr. visits in between.
More info about what's coming and what to expect in the next post.

like Jake would say 'Life is Good'

Make it a great day.

Bob

Monday, June 29, 2009

Graduation Day!

Woo Hoo, I've graduated! Today was the last radiation treatment, 30 of 30 done. It's pretty cool, the entire staff treats it great, hugs all around. My thanks go out to Brenda my nurse, Sherita, Amber, Beverly and Rob my technicians, Brenda the receptionist who flirted with me on my very first visit (haven't had that happen in a long time :)) and of course Dr. Haake. I couldn't have been in better care.

Now that my treatments are done, I can get on the road again helping my team. I think Kathy is ready for a break from me too, there is a huge suitcase by the back door with a plane ticket on top with my name on it. (looks like a one way ticket too) LOL

Next step is pre-op appointment on 7/30 and surgery on monday August 3rd.
Many thanks to everyone who's prayers are paying off. I feel great (still need to lose about 12 lbs) and am looking forward to getting this gunk out of my bod.

How about the celebrity passings lately?
Ed McMahon, Farah Fawcett, Michael Jackson, Billy Mays...all I can say is man o man.

That's it for now, maybe another post during my travels in July

have fun, make it a great day!

Bob

Monday, June 22, 2009

Down to 5

Well, 25 done, 5 more to go. The home stretch as they say. The last 5 will be a 'boost' which actually is a slight misnomer. What happens during the last 5 'nukes' is they just narrow the field with which they radiate so the 'boost' is basically same dosage to a smaller area.

to all the dads following this post, I hope you had a great father's day weekend.

What a great US Open golf Championship, great tournament but what a heart breaker for Phil Mickelson....this was the 5th time he's finished second, so close. How about David Duval, 882 ranked player in the world and finishes in the top 10, hell, he tied for second with Phil! He fought back today after a triple bogey on his first hole today and toughed out a great round.

So far fighting cancer for me has remained positive. Attitude right now is my biggest ally...and I'm guessing the 'nuke' sessions are working. All of the support and prayers from eveyrone is paying off as well and on behalf of the entire Evans family, we thank you.

Next update will come after the last treatment

Make it a great week.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Hmmm, just when I thought it was easy...

this weekend a couple of side effects kicked in, nothing major but it's now evident to me the radiation is working, so that's a good thing. Just 8 more treatments and then done with radiation.

Did I tell you my kids are Wahoos? Really, for a couple of years now. Wahoos as in Weddington Wahoos swim team. Crazy schedule for 7 weeks, practice every day and 2-3 swim meets per week.
Speaking of swim meets, on monday it started at 6pm and ended at 10:10pm, almost 150 kids from each of 2 teams, only 6 lanes and every child can swim 4 events.....note to self, bring a book next time. seriously, it's great to see the kids compete and have a great time.

Well, we're working our way up to father's day and here's a shout out to all the dads who've had a positive influence in the lives of their kids. Thanks dad.

Make it a great day!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Let the countdown begin

Another week done, only 11 more treatments to go. Heck, sounds like the countdown to the end of my sales quarter! These radiation treatments are a piece of cake and so far, no side effects. It's a beautiful thing.

I'll be focused the next 12 business days on helping my team close new business where we can launch partnerships with more nonprofits and help them be successful.

One of the organizations I'm excited about is Gateway for Cancer Research, check them out
www.gatewayforcancerresearch.org

Exciting weekend here at the Evans household, Bradley took off to Atlanta for a weekend children's choir trip, his first 'long' time away from home. While he was a little nervous, he was excited too. It will be great to hear about all the details on sunday night.

Gearing up for the US Open golf championship...it's our National Championship and always falls on fathers day weekend. I can't wait because it is a true test of golf and many of the players end up looking like me, a hack. Ha!

comments are always welcome on this blog, any suggestion to make this more enjoyable, let me know.

Make it a great weekend.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

A million bucks

Well, more than half way done, 16 of 30 treaments done and I feel AWESOME. Seriously, feeling better than I did 4 months ago before I found out about the PC (that's prostate cancer for those of you joining late to this mind numbing blog).

Geez, about the only thing I've notice of the past few weeks is that my golf game stinks. A neighbor of mine has been kind enough to take me to his club and while it's not an easy course, you can score on it but in my case, I've required them to change the scorecard so it can accomodate triple digets for a total. All I can say is I must be spending waaaaaay too much time working.

go Penguins! for those of you paying attention to the NHL Stanley Cup, tonight is game 6 and Pittsburgh needs to win to extend the series. There is some great hockey being played, it's worth watching the talent of guys who sprint for 50 seconds at a time, 40 times a game....on ice, being body-checked by dudes 6'4" 240 lbs...amazing.

HIFU - did you hear about the newest treatment to attack PC? High Intensity Focused Ultrasound. Virtually no side effects and being done in the UK...not sure when it might become widely available or for that matter, if it even would apply to the 'aggressive' cancer I have.
Something to watch.

Okay, check in again soon, June if flying by and before you know it my bags will be packed and I'll be able to travel again to help my team. Actually, Kathy already has my bags packed and sitting by the door...she's sick of me being home, I cramp her style :)

now, go Make it a Great Day! (I plan on it)

Bob

Thursday, June 4, 2009

setting a speed record

Today's session was the quickest by far. I walked in, registered via the touchscreen computer and didn't even sit down and they called me in. Walked in laid down on the table and 6 minutes later I was walking out the door. Heck, my coffee didn't even get cold in the car. Call me a speed demon.

Almost half way done, 13 of 30 sessions behind me and still feeling great.
Yesterday I had two conversations with former colleagues I used to work with and it has been a while since we last talked. Needless to say they were as surprised and anyone to hear the news of my cancer. I find it comforting to talk about it while at the same time, it's still surreal.

Oh, the other thing that happened was the mail came....with a gift certificate from my extended team at Convio. Unbelievable, I was floored with the kindness and their thoughfulness.

That's it for today...

Later,

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

give up?

Okay, the last couple of blogs posts I gave some hints as to what movie the line "easy, peasy, japaneesy" came from and one hint I was incorrect. The time period was the late 40's not the 50's.

give up? It's the Shawshank Redemption...it's where Birdie (the librarian in the prison) shows Andy (Tim Robbins) how to sort and put away the books on the shelves.

And where did Andy and Red end up?
Zihuatanejo....and if you've never been there, you have to go. It's awesome.

Week 3 of treatments, off to another smooth start. I'm getting pretty good at jumping on the table and almost getting myself all lined up without too many adjustments. Practice makes perfect.
Surgery is set, 31 days away. Can't wait to get in, get it out and move on.

Friends, thanks for all the support, it helps.
A Point to Ponder: Why do we label underwear as a 'pair'?

Friday, May 29, 2009

Prostate Cancer sucks

That's what my son Bradley says, it sucks. He's an awesome supporter, so much so that he took a piece of paper, wrote in bold letters 'I hate prostate cancer' and had his entire class sign it including his teacher, the librarians and the principle. Very cool.

Today marked the end of week 2 of radiation treatments, so far, a piece of cake. No side effects.
It's a beautiful thing.

Okay, here is the hint I promised....the movie is set in about the 1950's and has 2 main characters.
The quote doesn't come from either character but it is directed to one. All I need is the name of the movie and then I'll let you know which scene it's from. Think an ending in Mexico.
Any guesses? write a comment.

Back to Bradley, he told me today he wants to pull together a 'cancer awareness day' at his school to make sure everyone knows about cancer. What a kid, you have to love it.

Make it a great weekend!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Doctor day today

It turns our Wednesday is Dr day, a chance for the Dr to see how things are going.
"Easy peasy Japanesey"....(okay, what movie is this from and who said it?)

The Dr was happy to hear everything is going great, I'm glad too for obvious reasons.
For my friends out there 40 and over, have you had your PSA checked yet? If not, why not?

Slight change of plans for surgery, I had hoped it would be on Aug 10 but now it will be on monday, August 3rd. I'm excited to get it on the books and mentally focused.

Alright, back to the quote...."easy, peasy, Japanesey"....think, I'll have a hint next message if no one guesses. the movie is one of my favorites.

later

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Did you honor our Military?

I hope you had a great weekend and spent time honoring and remembering our veterans and current military personnel, we owe them big time. Living in America is something special and we need to remember Freedom isn't free, the price is paid by dedicated individuals.

the weekend here was good, did the usual yard work and even dodged the rain and played a little golf. there were some small signs of improvement so maybe the treatments are paying off in another way.

Speaking of treatments, Memorial day was great, no traffic so it was a breeze. Today, different story, crazy traffic got in my way of being on time. I have to say, the radiation technicians are so, so nice it makes the visit easy.

I finally made the time to read the Lance Armstrong book: 'It not about the bike' and of course it was as good as everyone said it would be. If you haven't read it yet, you need to.

Later

Sunday, May 24, 2009

first week in

So week 1 is done, 4 treatments, 26 more. the old car will get a workout going uptown and back.
36 miles total trip up Providence and back. I hope the old boy survives...the car that is.

The bonus to morning drive time is the Bob and Tom show...if you haven't listened to these characters you need to. They get great guests on the show, a ton of comedians and I often find myself laughing out loud.

later

Thursday, May 21, 2009

repaired....kind of

Well the repair man cometh and he fixed the machine.
At least for a little while. When I arrived today it was down again but "was close to being done"...which sounds like 'the check is in the mail'. But, it did in fact start working again so while treatment today was delayed, in the end I got zapped. (no pun intended).

It's weird, I have this cancer growing inside me that I cannot feel, no symptoms and then I go for radiation treatment where I don't feel anything. Kind of surreal in a way.

What I'm hopeful for is this radiation improves my golf game, something has to help. Goodness sakes, next time out I'm going to take a calculator.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

send in the repair man

Another day, another treatment but this morning I was literally one block away from parking and the technician called and said the machine was broken and they didn't know when it would be fixed.
In previous treatments, I've wondered how much a machine like this would cost and as a sales guy what the commission would be, who knows.
So 18 miles, 35 minutes wasted...oh well.
We'll just add a session to the end and get back to work. Could be worse, I could have been in the 4 car pile-up that slowed up my drive.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

radiation under way

started radiation monday, May 18, so far so good. 28 more treatments to go.
I don't think it has sunk in yet that I have cancer...my guess is that will change.

a buddy of mine told me "you just threw out the first pitch", just wait.
I'm optimistic this will be the easy part and surgery will be the challenge, at least for a couple of weeks.