How Will You Spend Your Remaining Time?
Last updated: April 2023
The mortality rate for humans is, alas, 100%, but it is nevertheless a shock when you personally come face to face with this reality. At least with prostate cancer, we usually have a bit of a warning that the end may be near, or that we're not immortal.
What will you do with your remaining time? How will you spend the last of the precious capital that has been allotted to you?
How I initially approached this
For some of us, it is a chance to get our house in order, for others it is a warning to experience those things that we have never had a chance to do. For most of us, it is a signal to slow down and do the important things in life. Maybe we will take this time to say some final goodbyes. Maybe we want to reconnect with old friends, relatives, or lovers.
Some of us just ignore the deadline and carry on as before, while others may take a little detour on the way to Heaven and obliterate their worries with alcohol or drugs. I would like to say that I have personally handled this situation in a responsible way, but I cannot. I tried drinking, which was fun for a while, but eventually I realized that my family was more important than fancy wines, so I quit drinking.
On the other hand, I found that helping other men with prostate cancer through my articles on ProstateCancer.net and my advocacy for Reel Recovery was more rewarding, and I have concentrated on that.
How others I knew spent their remaining time
I am not here to moralize or try to tell you what you should do with your precious remaining days; however, I can tell you about some of the men I knew with prostate cancer and how they dealt with it.
My best friend at my Reel Recovery retreat for men with cancer was Steven Whisler. Instead of feeling sorry for himself, Steve celebrated each day he had left. He lived life to the fullest and enriched the lives of those around him by his good cheer, enthusiasm, and joie de vivre. He was a bright light who loved to explore, to fly fish, and to make people laugh. He also worked on protecting his beloved Henry's Fork of the Snake River.
Another friend that I met during the Reel Recovery retreat started a nonprofit called the Mohawk Mission (mohawkmission.com) for raising awareness of prostate cancer. He also has a Facebook group for men with prostate cancer (PC Tribe), and he just started a local in-person support group.
What legacy will I leave?
From time to time I like to think about the friends I have lost and consider my own situation. If, after I have passed, should my soul return to whisper in the wind through the branches of my favorite tree, or wander the banks of my childhood fishing stream, or sing with the crickets on a warm summer night, or talk to my wife in her dreams, what will it find?
Will I be regarded with fondness? Will I be dismissed as a crank or a drunk? Will I be forgotten? Or will I be remembered as having made a difference, small as it might be, to the world of the living?
Has prostate cancer changed your life? (Select all that apply)
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