November 24, 2012, or thereabouts. The date I started trying to get a grasp on what having Multiple Myeloma means. My friends Ryan & Niki Anthony dropped the grenade (their term for revealing big news) that Ryan had been diagnosed with MM. Rage, sadness and fear all ran through me, but the strongest emotion was helplessness. What could I do to help? I have been honored and blessed that they have allowed me to do things. Physical acts to help with day to day life and major events. Most often driving people and/or items from one place to another, which has given me the opportunity to meet some incredible people and have some interesting experiences.
I have tried, sometimes poorly, to interject humor along the way. Joking about serious situations is a coping mechanism for me. Besides, it would be so boring if everyone was serious all the time. In 2013, when Ryan was able to supply more than enough stem cells for his transplants in a single donation, I commented, “So, you are world class trumpet player with a beautiful wife and great kids. Do you even have to be good at cancer?” If I had only known then just how good at it he would be. The focus and strength with which he and Niki are leading us on this journey is truly amazing.
On January 14 I was honored to be in attendance when Ryan spoke as a patient advocate for Medidata Solutions. The one line of his talk that continues to ring in my head is that "Cancer only fears research."
Running the NYC Half Marathon in March as a member of the MMRF Team for Cures is the most recent thing I have found to reduce my feelings of helplessness. If you have read this far then you know this is the part where I ask for your help. If you have a few bucks to spare it would be great, also, if you would check to see if your employer matches donations, that would be great as well. Here is the link to a list of employers that do match:
I am not going to tell you it is for a good cause, they are all good causes, this one just hits very close to home for Delia & I.
Thanks for checking this out. If you would like to know more about Ryan and his family’s journey you can find that here : cancerblows.com . Also, I have added a couple of links below so you can experience a bit of Ryan's talent.