Raise your hand if your life is going exactly as you planned. That’s what I thought… no hands going up. It doesn’t mean your life is not wonderful. Many milestones and mountain top experiences are complete surprises. And since no one ever asks for dark, challenging times, I’d say they are outside the plan as well.
Instead of a scripted and well-rehearsed play, sometimes our lives seem more like an improv sketch comedy show. We take whatever is thrown at us and make the best of it. To keep the improv going, there’s an unwritten rule among improv actors to say yes to the suggestions of other actors. You can bring the scene to a screeching halt if you don’t accept each change. It’s best to just react and keep moving.
My brother Jeff got a big surprise thrown at him 2 years ago when he was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma. At first there was a script for treatment – 2 stem cell transplants and chemo (12 coordinated months) He heroically fought through the nausea and the hair loss and the funky side effects and got his “bad” number down to single digits last month!
Now the script is gone and it’s improv time. His doctor continues to make adjustments to his ongoing chemo, trying to get the number down to 0 to 2 so they can declare remission. His current drug Revlimid, in conjunction with the powerful steroid Dexamethasone, is working on the myeloma but is also affecting his overall muscle strength, making it harder to do things we all take for granted.
We already planned to run the Chicago Marathon together this October – my brother Jeff, brother Brad and myself. We will be improvising by running, jogging, walking and possibly crawling if necessary. We will complete the 26.2 miles as a way to raise money for research and a way for Jeff to show once again what he is made of. I believe that will power is a much better measure of a person’s heart than athletic perfection.
If you would like to be a part of this improv, we would love to have you on the team! Here are three things you can do to keep the scene moving:
- Give if you can to support life-saving research
- Spread the word by sharing this post in social media
- Send a message of support to Jeff in the comments below
The script is gone and it’s time to react. Let’s work together to make sure the scene goes on and on and on. The resolution will be improvised!
You are a warrior and having read of your battle and progress via David’s posts thus far, I know you’ve got what it takes!! Improvise but never, ever, ever give up!!
Thanks Julie! Jeff is not on Facebook, but I know he reads these comments 🙂
Hi David, Let me tell you about a friend of mine; another real inspiration. Cathy was born with kidney disease, Renal Tubular Acidosis. Her doctor said she had enough stones to pave a driveway! Real compassion, huh? She herself said that peeing was like urinating splinters of glass. Despite that Cathy has been living an incredibly full life. skiing, camping, belly dancing, toured Europe with nothing other a plane ticket and a Euro pass, and her deep passion, gardening. A number of years back Cathy had to have one of those kidneys removed and then the other and was living on dialysis for 8 months; if you call that living! Cathy pushed through though, just like your brother. A little over a year ago Cathy finally got the call to get kidney transplants at UC Davis. She was in and out of there in 4 days with the shortest drug list they had ever seen. Of course she’ll have to live on immune supressor drugs for the rest of her life. There are doctors now telling her story at symposiums. To me, she a living miracle; the key word is living here. How does she do it, real food! That’s right, real food! I myself know the wonderful effects that real food can bring. I used the word real here, because much of the so called food supply is toxic and responsible for many of what’s now referred to as Western Disease. The primary four being, Cardiovascular Disease, Obesity, Type 2 Diabetes and Cancer. As for me I have a history of heart disease in my family. My own sister takes Lipitor. I live very close to pristine health and have not taken a prescription drug in about 15 years. It’s primarily due to the way I eat, which is seasonal, organic, unprocessed and local. This is very important to me, so much so that I am a student at Bauman College for Holistic Nutrition, which uses the Eating for Health model (E4H)tm and I am the Education Coordinator for a school garden to table program on the Puentes Bogg’s Tract Community Farm. I obviously am not a doctor and do not wish to be. Everybody should talk to there primary care physician before starting a healthy food eating regimen, but also realize they have little nutritional training, which is where I come in.There are many places to go online and see about healthy eating and the effects of unhealthy eating, such as mercola.com. Most of them will tell you its whole food, plant based. The time has come to bring Eastern Medicine and Western Medicine together. This is in fact happening. At first we referred to it as alternative medicine, then complimentary, now it’s called, Integrative. That’s the way of nature. Western medicine relies on chemistry, eastern on physics. The only true healthy way is both, together. I’ll leave you with a few quotes, “If man makes it, don’t eat it,” Jack Lalanne, and the father of modern medicine, Hippocrates. This ones right in the Hippocratic Oath, “Do no harm.” The other one by him, “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” Good news is that when the old script is bringing us too many dark challenges; we can throw it out and rewrite a new bright one. I wish the best to you and your brother. May you live a long, healthy, and happy lives. Blessings
Thanks for sharing David! That’s a lot of great information!
Improvisation is what inspires dreams and future inventions. Thank you both, Jeff and David , for allowing us to be blessed by your story and strength.