Cancerous Emotions Cause Heartache

I have learned many things since I started this horrid battle against the Pharyngeal and Squamous Cell Carcinomas.

One of the most important, yet heartbreaking, being that having terminal cancer changes all aspects of life. Yours and every person connected to you in any and each way.

For the patient it is difficult enough. They must go through the various stages of coming to the realization that they do indeed have terminal cancer. And Death is intimate.

I was tortured through the first few stages of cancer acceptance.

First came the “Denial” .

I don’t have cancer. I want another and another opinion.”

Then came “Depression.”

The darkness crept in. The tears began to fall.

And of course this was followed by the demonic “Suicidal” stage.

I gave it serious consideration. Being a man who has been Blessed with loving family and dear friends, I was pulled from the bowels of this Demon.

And in all honesty it was just in the knick of time. I lie to you not

I am now in the “Acceptance” stage.

I am at peace with the diagnosis.

I am at war with the desease.

My soul mate, my family, my friends and everyone connected to my life get the smelly end of the stick.

They must stand helpless and full of guilt because they know not what they can do to alleviate my suffering.

(“SUFFER” is an understatement – what my precious loved ones had to witness was heartbreaking for me.)

Like I stated previously, I have no choice but to accept the “diagnosis“.

I DO NOT HAVE TO AGREE WITH THE “TERMINAL” labelling.

They, my loved ones, will forever be stuck in the “Denial” stage.

For who wants their spouse, parent, child, best friend, etc. to be dying of not one, but two cancers?

The pain and sorrow I see in their eyes fuels my fires to beat this demonic affliction against all the odds that are stacked against me.

I cannot allow cancer in my body to cause pain and heartbreak in their hearts.

We have all changed personality wise. My many sons and I have grown much closer. As has my relationship with my dearest friend and deepest love. The relationship between my ex-wife of 32 years and I has become far more calm, for lack of a better word.

The pleasent side of this is I hear the words, “I love you.” often. Not spoken only to me, but being readily exchanged between family and friends.

What makes this far more heartwarming is not only do I hear the sincerity of the “I love you’s”, I have the Blessing to see the “love” being naturally expressed.

There is always something good trapped inside a disparaging situation. You simply have to identify and bring it to the surface so that it may be a Blessing for all.

The cancer emotions are severe – severe enough to destroy even the strongest and most faithful of souls.

I put my loved one through Hell on many occasions this past few months. Especially when I battled my way through the Denial and Suicidal phase.

I am still a very moody and cantankerous prick at times. I try not to be but it happens. I could blame the pain, or the depression, or the side effects of the opiates, but I blame myself. It is up to me to not take my frustration and sadness out on others.

This Cancer War has made me a grounded soul. I realize that I am far from immortal now. Life is far more precious now. I treasure each second of every minute of each hour I have with my loved ones.

I see more beauty in my soul mate – my dearest friend – Maria. I see how handsome my sons are. I appreciate the love as a friend my ex-wife and I can now share.

Greatest thing I have learned is that life has no time for drama or childish arguments. That one smile is capable of banishing a hundred frowns.

I learned to love MYSELF once again and to let the people I love know that I do truly appreciate and love them.

Yet, I hold that guilt and the sorrow of what I see in their eyes.

I wish they could and would believe that although I am living in a painful Hell, I will be fine. For this Original Urban Viking – the Last Canadian Cosmonaut is not ready for ascension.

I will beat this demonic affliction back to the dusty bowels of Helheim it came from.

Until then, I shall remain – Dann, just as I am

Cuatro en La Mañana Pensamientos Profundos

Mi alma gemela está fuera para una mini-excursión para limpiar su hermosa mente de su madre y yo luchando contra el cáncer en etapa 4 tardía.

Es desgarrador verla sufriendo mi dolor.

Antes de que ella incluso saliera de Toronto, tuve ese nudo retorcido de soledad que agarró mis testículos.

Sé muy bien que pronto estará en casa, pero “el corazón es un cazador solitario”.

Lo mío está en una nube solitaria de Apreciación y Amor.

PORQUE ME AMO Y APRECIO A MÁS ALLÁ DE CUALQUIER PALABRA QUE AUTOR AQUÍ.

Ella sabe el peso de mi Devoción y cada onza singular de amor verdadero que llevo por ella.

No hay duda si eso. Esperaré su regreso con el corazón bien abierto y los brazos levantados en Alabado sea Dios.

Porque el Señor Salvador me bendijo con el privilegio de amarla.

Y lo hago La amo inmensamente y 100% veraz.

…………………………………………………………….

My soul mate is away for a mini-excursion to clear her beautiful mind from her Mother and I both battling late stage 4 cancer.

It is heartbreaking to see her suffering my pain.

Before she even flew out of Toronto I had that twisted knot of loneliness grab my testicles.

I know darn well that she will soon be home, but the “heart is a lonely hunter”.

Mine lays in a solitary cloud of Appreciation and Love.

FOR I DO LOVE AND APPRECIATE HER BEYOND ANY WORDS I AUTHOR HERE.

She knows the weight of my Devotion and each singular ounce of true love I carry for her.

There is no doubt if that. I will await her return with my heart wide open and my arms raised in Praise God. For the Lord Savior Blessed me with the privilege of loving her.

And I do. I love her immensely and 100% truthfulness.

The Fear of Cancer Continued

Today, May 30th, 2019, I attended the Head & Neck Cancer Clinic in the marvelous Princess Margaret Cancer Center.

This was the appointment I so eagerly awaited in my previous blog, “The Fear of Cancer”.

I was not expecting good news. Many years ago I had trained myself to always expect the worst in this type of a situation.

Why, you ask?”

If I expect the worse, then no matter what the diagnosis is to be I will be relieved as it is not the worst.

By the way, “It was the worse I have heard so far.”

Soooooo, I will break down the first three parts.

I will be receiving 39 sessions in a hypobaric chamber. They average 1 to 2 hours per session.

As you all know, from the previous and numerous blogs, now that the tumors have been destroyed by the radical radiation, I am plagued with ulcers of a yet ‘unknown’ type growing in the pockets of necrosic flesh left behind by the dimishing tumors.

These come in three types.

1) Non-cancerous ordinary ulcers

2) Cancerous ‘Treatable’

3) Cancerous ‘Non-Treatable

A biopsy is need to determine which. This is going to be schedule super a.s.a.p. at my surgerical oncologist at Mount Sinai Hospital. I suspect as early as Tuesday.

I will also have another CT scan of my chest and head.

All this is on super rush.

Tests I have had are still inconclusive.

I need to be put under for the biopsy as they cannot get down my throat far enough the conventional way.

The specialty surgeon is going to have to evaluate what to needs to be removed.

What my quality of life shall be if I have surgery will determine my choice of having surgery or not.

I will not allow any surgery that renders me invalid or disfigured.

I will not suffer my family or loved ones such sorrow.

The ulcers are not healing. This is where the hyperbolic chamber comes into play. By infusion my body with oxygen it will promote faster healing.

Hopefully.

We still are unsure as to whether or not they are cancerous or non-cancerous.

It may be necessary for me to have the g-tube re-installed. I may have no choice but to stop eating orally completely. This to allow my throat to heal.

I would be 100% reliant on the g-tube for all nutrition and hydration. For as long as it takes to improve.

For the past week or so I have experienced a pain like no other in my life! Far worse than anything I have experienced. And I have been through many physically painful situations.

It starts behind my eyes – as if there is someone attempting to push my eyes out of the sockets with their thumbs. My ears are constantly feeling as if they are being stabbed with sharpened pencils. The base of my skull has someone hammering in nails and my throat pain is beyond description.

I literally cry like a baby. I want to scream.

But, I can and will do my best to pass through this, the biggest storm of my life. (Death?)

Thank you all for the love, positive vibrations, encouragement abs mostof all your Prayers.

I am humbled by what everyone has done for me and the love that has enveloped me.

Maria MacDonald – your loveand devotion is a large factor in my surviving this far and I will never give up this battle for I have a lifetime to spend sharing with you.

You are the fire in my life. My heart. My love.

I appreciate, respect and loveyou beyond words.

I will say my Prayers now and ask for relief from this barrage of pure pain.

Remember my friends, it does not take much to …..

PRAY IT FORWARD

#LightHouseDannVerner
#FuckCancer
#TheOriginalUrbanViking

The Fear of Cancer

Not often I have ‘fear‘.

I have it now. I fear that I may not beat this cancer.

I was diagnosed on October 22nd, 2018, with Pharyngeal and Squamous Cell Carcinoma. Stage four.

I was past the ability to be treated via chemotherapy and conventional radiation. My only three options were let nature take her course or surgery to remove my complete tongue and lymph nodes (leaving me with zero quality of life) or receive radical aggressive radiation.

I chose the latter. Receiving a double session twice per day for twenty days. The actual treatment was easy. Just lay down, strapped in a cage and a mere fifteen minutes listening to Pink Floyd as the machine’s robotic arms did their task.

I was pleased when on March the first I completed the therapy and was told it had succeeded in killing all the tumors.

What I didn’t understand at that time was the worse part comes after the therapy. As the tumors diminished the damage from the radiation and cancer surfaces. This, apparently, can go on for up to two years.

My throat swelled and on the exterior turned purple. A side affect of the radiation burn and dying tissues within.

I had a few complications during the course of treatment. I developed a huge abscess in my lower abdominal cavity, possibly from the feeding g-tube implant. It required minor surgery to remove and drain. This was followed by a major battle with septicemia. A battle I thankfully won.

I was released from the Princess Margaret Cancer Center on January 31, 2019. After being hospitalized for twenty seven days. I was glad to be home.

At four in the morning of February the 2nd my spleen exploded. I bled out and have only survived because I live blocks from the Michael Garron Hospital. I was revived. Received four pints of blood, rapid infusion of Ringers lactate, a litre of iron sucrose and twenty nine staples on my abdomen. Complete removal of my spleen.

I spent all of February and half of March in Princess Margaret. My weight dropped down to ninety seven pounds. A far cry from my average one hundred and seventy.

I look like a survivor from a Nazi Death Camp.

I was sent home mid March to complete my treatment as an out-patient.

Things were well at first. I could not swallow most food so I was dependant on six cans of condensed Isosource nutrients to feed my body. I managed to get my weight up to one hundred and twenty-two pounds.

But, a big but, the damage from the tumors and radiation was surfacing more and more. The pain of swallowing increasingly getting worse. To the point I feared swallowing even my saliva.

This I am still plagued with as I write.

My weight loss increased and depression tried to take over my logic. I feared that I would definitely die. I have that fear still, as do my caregivers.

No longer able to function properly I resigned myself to the reality of coming back into the hospital.

Presently, I am hospitalized in the magnificent Toronto General Hospital. A Blessing of living in Toronto with the world class treatment of Toronto General and the adjoined Princess Margaret Cancer Center. Two of the best hospitals worldwide.

If I lived anywhere else I am positive I would not be authoring this blog on this foggy Sunday morning.

I am not sure what is to happen to me next. Neither are my team of doctors.

I have been here a mere few days, having been admitted on the twenty four of May. So, I am awaiting the results of my MRI, CT Scan and numerous other tests.

Tomorrow I have to have minor surgery to re-implant a gastric feeding tube and biopsy of my tongue and throat.

So far my diagnosis is as follows:

1) as my body absorbed the dead tumors it left behind holes, like potholes in a road. These ‘holes‘ have developed ulcers.

2) The ulcers can be one of three types. (A) non-cancerous, (B) Cancerous but treatable and (C) Cancerous non-treatable

3) I am severely malnourished and dehydrated.

Hopefully, by tomorrow evening I will know for sure what battle lays before me.

I am a ‘realist’. Hence, I take things in stride. It is what it is and I will deal with whatever falls my way with logic over emotions.

I also trained myself to always expect the worse possible scenarios. Reason being if I am expecting the worse no matter what my diagnosis is to be it shall be better than what I expected. A small comfort in such a serious situation.

I am not being unrealistic in my expectations. I am in a serious situation.

After many discussions with all my treatment team and my beloved family, I made the difficult decision to put in place a DNR, (Do Not Resuscitate), on my medical record.

This is justified and many tears were shed coming to the decision. It is the best avenue to take considering the condition of my physical form. My bone density is very low which means that if I were to receive CPR my ribs would shatter. Greater risk is that my heart and poor physical condition makes it ninety nine percent positive I will slip into a coma – a coma I will not recover from.

I pray no one ever has to have this discussion with their family. It was/is the most heartbreaking talk I have ever imagined having to have.

Saddest part being the reaction of my family and friends. I, being the patient, fully have accepted that I am knocking on the gates of Valhalla. I did not wish to accept it, but it is what it is.

I also have refused any major surgery that will disfigure and disable me. I refuse wholeheartedly to have my love ones suffer the anguish of watching me whither away, perhaps for weeks or months. That would scar their very souls for life. It would be selfish of me to put them through such.

They understand. They don’t like accepting it, but, once again, it is what it is.

I am not, by far, a ‘religious’ man. I am a man of faith. I believe in a higher, supreme power. Over the past 15 years I have been brought back to life 9 times so far. I wrote about these times previously. It’s suffice to say my life has been full of numerous ups and downs. Often down. It strengthened my personality and outlook on life. To most they would say my life was tragic. I see it as just ‘my life’. Sixty-one and a half years of learning and growth.

So, as it stands today, I have a battle to win. And I shall win because I am surrounded by true caring and love. I have a large group of beautiful souls who have formed a ‘Prayer Army’ on my behalf. Believe or not, but there is a power in prayers. They don’t have to be church indoctrinated chants, but rather sincere and positive praise to whoever you perceive as your Creator.

I am anxious to get the results of the tests tomorrow. The waiting and the fear of what may be is far more disheartening than the cancers themselves. The fear of the unknown instills an anxiety that clouds judgement.

I prefer sunny days over cloudy ones.

So, I will leave you now and I will blog whatever happens next in my wonderful life as soon as I know.

Until then, I remain ‘Dann, just as I am – – – The Original Urban Viking’.

NAMASTE’ MY FRIENDS

And remember to ……

ALWAYS PRAY IT FORWARD

BLESS

Piscina de Lágrimas

The night reminds me that there lay a hole in my heart.

A dark aching patch which once was filled with joyous laughter and pride.

Pride for being gifted with loving her.

I shall never not love her.

How could I?

For my heart beats only for her.

In days of futures past the love will still be genuine.

Love is not a mere word. Although, some may believe.

It well may be a physical part of that which we are made of.

So, I shall shed these tears.

For they are mine.

They shall gather as a pool of joyfulness and sorrow in the dark hole within my heart.

And I will smile.

And remember when it was love …..

At first sight.