Are You In Control Of Your Destiny?
I met Mr. Albert, a 74-year old industrialist, at a prostate cancer support group. I asked him if he was willing to talk to me (a woman) about his journey. He was so happy to share his story with me.
He kept giving me kudos for being so knowledgeable about this disease. This was such a proud moment in my life. My father has had prostate cancer for about 15 years. All my knowledge came from being a part of www.ProstateCancer.net.
I loved being part of such a great group of advocates. Of course, I would never know what’s it’s like to have the disease, but I could offer support.
A few years left to live
Mr. Albert has his own company and is financially set, but rarely did he go to visit the doctor for checkups. He had planned a vacation to visit his elder brother in California, but fell sick immediately. The doctor discovered that he had a Gleason score - a yardstick for measuring the severity of prostate cancer - of an 8.
They wanted him to undergo surgery immediately. So many question came to his mind. He was immediately saddled with questions like, "Am I going to defeat this cancer? Will I live though this?"
Telling the family
He immediately traveled back home to tell his wife and children what was going on. How was he going to break the news to them? All of his children, wife, and close friends got together at once.
He has a good support team of family and friends. His team of doctors are knowledgeable about prostate cancer. Having good insurance, transportation, and a fighting spirit has helped him trust that he is in the best hands.
Taking a step back
The doctors made him feel like he was racing against time. His advice to everyone is to take a step back and realize what your options are.
He did have the surgery, and it was successful. Radiation and chemotherapy followed. The industrialist lamented how he had to do a bone scan every four months and take his pills every day.
Cherishing every moment
Mr. Albert is a grandfather and lives in peace with his wife and cherishes every moment he has on this earth. Seven years have passed since his prostate cancer diagnosis.
He is not free from prostate cancer, but he always advises all men to make time for their health. His doctors play a major role in navigating his day-to-day health. They provide different treatment options for him and help to manage his condition.
Getting tested early for prostate cancer
Albert suggests that men who are above 40 should get themselves tested for prostate cancer. The senior man firmly believes that he is going to pull through fully. He knows the cancer is changing him in many ways. Yet, he still has dreams of a long life with his wife and family. Family is everything to him; he still craves fun, love, and living life.
Mr. Albert thanked me for talking to him; he said that most people don’t want to approach the subject. Most people have to figure out what to say to him. When it’s all said and done, we all need love and kindness.
Let me say this again: get checked early.
Have you made personal connections through your journey with prostate cancer?