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180 Days.


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On Sept 26, 2003 I went to work. I'd been feeling "not right" for almost a year and earlier that month had gotten sick with what I thought was a bad cold or the flu. On the 24th I went to an urgent care where the doctor diagnosed me with pnuemonia, took a chest x-ray and sent me home with some anti-biotics and told me to check back in 3 days to get the results of the x-ray. I was still not feeling real good on the 26th but decided to go to work anyway. I was a city bus driver at the time. I took over the route I was scheduled for that day, made one round trip (about 2 hrs) and could not lift my arms over the steering wheel! I called in for a relief driver (something I'd NEVER had to do before) and, after being relieved, went to the urgent care to see if they had gotten the results from the x-ray in early. They had and I was told that, yes, I did have pnuemonia .... but ... there was "something else" in there.

That was the start, for me, of this journey we all are on. It took a month to get my final dx (see below), but I consider the day I heard those words, "something else" to be the day that cancer entered my life.

I won't go into all the things that have happened so far. Those of you that have been here bofore me have been right there beside me the whole way. Those of you who've come after know the journey WAY too well anyway.

I would like to do something I don't do much ... and that is to let you all know how things are with me now. Physically not much has changed since that day I could no longer drive my bus. I'm a bit weaker and there is a bit more pain, but nothing that I can't work around or control. I still only have to use my oxygen on a PRN basis and yesterday I got a nebulizer for my combi-vent that works a lot better than the inhaler I was using.

And, of course, I have my SCOOTER! I can go where I want, when I want (mostly). I use the bus system and all my former co-workers seem genuingly glad to see me. My VA G.P. doc was instumental in getting me that scooter (which I don't really qualify for according to the VA criteria) AND for getting me on hospice right away which has also been a HUGE help.

And then there's you folks. Out of all the things that have happened in the last six months finding this place and you people has been my greatest joy. I firmly believe that you folks are directly responsible for me being as well as I am today. When I first got dx'd you were there with hope and understanding. When I had to make my decision on treatment you stood beside me, though it was not the choice you would have like to see me make. When I felt lost and was wondering what my life was all about you gave me a place where I felt needed. There have been times in the last 6 months when this place as literally been the only reason for me to get out of bed. Without this place and you people I'm convinced beyond a shadow of a doubt I would not be doing as well as I am. For that I can only say "Thank You!".

So, 180 days of living with cancer. How many more? I don't know. But I DO know this. Be it one day or a thousand I'm going to LIVE every da** one of them!

Let me repeat something I've said before: This disease may kill me ... it will NEVER "beat" me!

It is SO good to be alive today!


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You are too fantastic, too wonderful that we all need you, and get the most precious, considering words from you. I wish to say thank you to you and you are so important for me even I have never met you before. As what I mentioned, I see beauty, I see the wonder of creation from all of you guys. I treasure LIFE. LIFE is so beautiful and it is non-replacable.

Thank you for being with us and walking with us in the past and this moment and the long long future.

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Guest Karen C

Dean I love everything you say. And I'm with Shellie. 180 days of whipping up on it! Think about it - you're not doing any aggressive treatment, yet you're not much different today than you were 180 days ago! Wow - stable rocks, doesn't it! I think you've gotten this thing in check with your awesome mental powers.

You go!

Karen C.

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We are blessed in that we know we will be leaving, so the smallest things demand a greater attention today... like the first jonquils or forsythia of spring... the first blossoming pear tree... the birds coming home to nest.

Dean, my friend, thank you for walking with us on this road awhile... because it is the journey that is so special.

Thank you.



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Dear Dean,

Thank you for sharing your private thoughts with us. You are such as inspiration to me even tho i haven't had the courage to seriously consider YOUR way, I admire you for that ability. And you know what??? You'll probably outlive a lot of us. God Williing!!

My prayers are always with you and yours,

God Bless us All


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DEAN>As the others I too have enjoyed your participation and your sharing and caring.If there were anyone I know who deserves that special miracle YOUR THE MAN DEAN.

You and I are very different with our own personal philosophys ?? concerning the disease we all share.Even tho we all have diff situations.

However reading your posts it's amazing how very much alike we are.

Please hang in there a very,very long time and I for one am looking forward to many more words of wisdom.(which we have all recieved from you) THANKS


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Dear Dean,

I'm sitting her scrathing my head thinking, "hummm How do I reply to his message?"

Well, I guess it's pretty simple. CONGRATULATION on being here 180 DAYS!! I also thank God your able to be apart of this board & family, for you have enlighted each and everyone of us on this board in one way or another. I honestly have to say this though. I can NOT imagine this board WITHOUT YOU! So, I WON'T!!!

Today IS a GOOD DAY TO BE ALIVE!!! Enjoy my friend, and I will continue to enjoy your friendship and your postings as well.

And one other little thing, I was going to ask you to give us an UPDATE on how your doing, being that you never seem to let us know. But, you beat me to it!

Just for YI. The City Bus Drivers here in St. Paul Minnesota are all on strike! LOTS MORE CARS ON THE ROADS THESE DAYS!! :roll:


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Hi Everyone,

Thanks for sharing Dean, awesome testimony. I get to meet Dean & Gay! I wanted to announce that my husband and I have the pleasure of having dinner with this fine man and his wife, Gay tomorrow, (Saturday) in San Diego. I am so looking forward to meeting him and his lady. I wish we were all closer so that we could all be there. I can't say how exciting this is going to be. It is nice to chat and post, but to meet in person is so special. We are going to a restaurant on the Viejas Indian Reservation in San Diego. This restaurant comes highly recommended by Dean. He says the steaks are great, 5 star. I can't wait...

Your all invited. I'm serious, if you read this and can make it to San Diego by tomorrow at 4:30PM, we would love for you to join us...



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Boy, does that sound tempting, Karen!! A great dinner with some of my greatest new friends in one of my all-time favorite cities . . . but alas, my six-year-old is dancing at the town Easter Egg Hunt tomorrow, so I'd better be there rather than jumping on a plane.

Dean, thanks so much for sharing this wonderful post. And congratulations on those 180 days! And THANK YOU for being who you are. This board would truly not be what it is without you.

Y'all have a good time tomorrow night. I'll bet some of our ears will be burning!! :lol::lol:

Love and Blessings,


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I am relatively new to the board--but not so new that I am unable to thank you for being you.

I hope y'all had a great dinner the other night--sorry I was on the wrong coast to join you.

I sincerely look forward to reading your post on your next milestone.


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Dean - Thank God for you.... Congratulations on 180 days... you have been an inspiration to us all. Your words that you sent me to share with my son were invaluable - I have them printed and will save them forever. I thank you my friend. Love, Sharon

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