Logically, I know that I will lose my father to colon cancer. The vast majority of cases are curable when caught early, but his prognosis came very late. Following extensive, invasive, and agonizing surgery, his chances are still very small. While some trials have shown results, none of his scans suggest that a miracle cure has been found for his disease. To make matters worse, his health was already fragile with advanced adult diabetes, high blood pressure, and confirmed exposure to Agent Orange during his Air Force career.
My brain tells me that my father will die from this disease, but my heart never gives up hope. It may seem foolish, but I am convinced that the secret lies in more than pills and drugs and radical therapies. Somewhere after medicine there is a force that rivals even the greatest technologies-- faith. I have faith in my father's will to live, in his strength and tenacity, in his heart and in his absolutely maddening stubbornness. After all, I inherited my own bull-headedness directly from him. I refuse to believe in anything less than a miracle because he deserves nothing less. He has spent my entire life giving me the world... the least I can do is have faith in his ability to overcome, to persevere, and to live.
And if he does not survive, I owe him this. I guess if my father has to go through chemotherapy and tests and surgery and other indignities as he struggles with colon cancer, the least I can do is learn from his experience. I've always known that my eating habits and lifestyle were not healthy, but seeing my dad hooked up to tubes and machines put everything into perspective in a way that simple logic never could.
So in honor of my father, I'm taking back my life. I've been overweight my entire life. I've made excuses, I've pretended not to care, but I know what I need to do. On this blog, I will chronicle my efforts to apply the current medical advice to bring my life under control so I can decrease my risk of developing colon cancer.
You have always been my inspiration, Daddy... and you always will be.