MY CANCER ADVENTURE (And I don’t mean astrologically) – Episode 1

MY CANCER ADVENTURE
(and I don’t mean astrologically)

EPISODE ONE –
An Unexpected Surprise

I am lucky.

My physician, after reviewing my routine blood work from my yearly physical,
ordered me an appointment with the local urologist. She noticed that my P.S.A.
levels were about doubled. Still not overly high, but twice my normal.

I assumed, false positive. This was just a couple of weeks before all the well
publicized hoopla about P.S.A. tests, by the way. So, I was surprised, and
perhaps even a bit bemused, that the urologist wanted to perform a biopsy on my
prostate. This meant sticking a probe where the sun don’t shine, and collecting
samples with little needles. That is my simplified, non-technical summary of
the procedure. No need for details, I say. You can do your own research if so
inclined. And my research turned up the usual conflicting data: it’s easy …
It’s difficult … It hurts … It is painless.

I was considering NOT having the biopsy, and decided that I’d get a second
opinion from my physician, thinking that she would probably just reorder the
P.S.A. test, it would come back normal, and that would be that. “No,” she said,
“get the biopsy.”

I was not looking forward to it, but I wasn’t dreading it either. Of course,
Lynne was loving, supportive and good humored, I am extremely fortunate to be
married to Lynne.

My plan was to have the biopsy, get a milk shake at Ben and Jerry’s, and
recuperate for a day. This was on a Wednesday, I would have the results on
Friday, then work that night, giving a talk at Canyon Ranch, “Ways to Create
Miracles in Your Life.”

So, the biopsy was a little weird, but not horrible. That’s my report on that.

Friday. Lynne and I like to combine errands when we go to Pittsfield – a
haircut, some shopping, lunch with a friend visiting from Las Vegas, and the
meeting with the urologist. I was 100% expecting the doctor to say, “you’re
fine, adios!”

I was 100% wrong.

I have cancer in my prostate, and it is moderately aggressive, and I need to
make a treatment decision, and not wait.

I say I’m lucky because I got the biopsy. Had I waited for my next physical,
April, 2013, the chance of the cancer spreading beyond the prostate seems quite likely. That would be decidedly worse. Much. Worse. I could be wrong about this, but that’s what I’m thinking at the moment.

So, I told my sister and some of my friends. I’m still not sure whether or not
I will tell my 86-year-old mom and 93-year-old dad. But, I do want my friends
to know, just as I would want to know if any of my friends were going through
this.

Lynne and I are deep in research mode now, as there are ridiculous amounts of
options for treatment – what, who, where, how, when. The “when” has to be
before September, the urologist told us, and we are proceeding as if, BUT … I
need more information to make the decision.

How do I feel? Mostly OK. Not scared. Overwhelmed at times. Basically
optimistic. Compassion for myself, my wife, and everyone else who deals with
these things. Grateful that I have spent most of my life nurturing a positive
outlook. Grateful for friends and loved ones. Grateful for life itself.
Mostly grateful for my wife. She’s smart – smarter than me 🙂

Life is filled with mysteries, possibilities, probabilities, miracles and
challenges. I fully expect that somehow, this experience will make me a “better
person.”

Love to you all.

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18 responses to this post.

  1. Jerry , very nice ~~ keep a positive out look ~~ they do wonderful things these days ~““

    Reply

  2. Posted by Danny Hardesty on May 28, 2012 at 4:40 pm

    Jerry, you have lots of friends thinking about you even as far away as Texas! About a year ago I had a basal cell carcinoma removed from my nose so I am a fellow cancer person. Oh, I noticed I have not bought your new book. Will do that now! That should cheer you up a bit!

    Your friend and fellow broadcaster from Thomas Jefferson Junior High,

    Danny Hardesty

    Reply

  3. Posted by Cheryl Tripp-Cleveland on May 28, 2012 at 4:50 pm

    Jerry…my thoughts and prayers are with you. Know you are in my heart. You are a very dear friend. Good luck in your struggle…and you are a survivor!!! The power of positive thinking is on your side. Love cheryl

    Reply

  4. Great post, Jerry. You’ve got all the bases covered — good support, good resources, good research. Love to you and Lynne — who must be an amazing woman.

    Reply

  5. I do not think that anyone who is diagnosed with cancer is ever prepared for it (or should be). You mention your wonderful wife and I am sure your family and friends who are close to you will be just as wonderful and supportive. Just from reading your posts, your blogs and your books, I know you have a wonderful attitude and life!!! It has been over 40 years since I have even seen you or spoken to you and through FB we have been in touch. I will always remember the morning announcements of Jerry Posner!!!! I want to tell you, that you will definitely be in my prayers!! God bless you as you go through the battle with cancer. YOU will win this one too!!!!!!!

    Reply

  6. Posted by Michele Beaulieu-Brace on May 28, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    Jerry, I am so sorry to hear about your cancer. You are such an amazing person & have helped SO many people on your journey in this lifetime. I too have been going through some rough stuff lately but must say I am ashamed of the pity party & crisis mode i have embraced .After hearing about your illness.,mine is a “small”world indeed. I always wonder why these things happen to good people, but know that somehow we choose our life lessons. I am glad you have Lynne beside you. I have always considered you a dear friend & I want you to know that I am sending you love, light & healing.
    Michele Beaulieu-Brace

    Reply

  7. Posted by Eileen Slockett Lindstrom on May 28, 2012 at 8:31 pm

    Thank you for sharing Jerry. Will follow your journey and be sending you positive healing energy along the way. Shine on.

    Reply

  8. Jerry…All the best to you in your “adventure.” You and Lynne will be in my thoughts throughout your endeavor. I appreciate your willingness – and bravery – in chroniclling your experience. It will be a terrific learning tool for others.

    Scott

    Reply

  9. Jerry, you have the right outlook! Having seen friends of mine go through the same, be confident in knowing that modern medicine is truy performing miracles these days. The best medicine though comes from within. Stay positive, stay strong, and know you supporters everywhere!

    Reply

  10. Well, my friend, I am glad to hear that you, your smart wife, and urologist caught this early. Cancer seems to be in abundance. Gayle’s ex had prostate cancer 12 years ago and her father 25 years ago. Gayle had a rare cancer in her hand that required a second surgery and 7 weeks of radiation. I had thyroid cancer 4 years ago. Last week a guest at the Ranch told me that she’d had breast cancer. The doctor removed the cancer, then left seeds that would receive the radiation beams for ONE WEEK! DONE! Every year medicine makes strides. I loved the article, and Gayle and I will send you our bestest healing thoughts. Love you tons! Jess

    Reply

  11. Heya Jerry, You are facing the biggest hardest test in life that most people come across. But you are armored with the best support system there is best wife, loyal friends, good doctors, you are smart and have resources. And now you will use those resources to get through this. As you can see from your responses there are so many that come through the huge obstacle of cancer. And if anyone can do it with a positive attitude you know you can. I believe you have it for a reason. You will have more material to speak and write and teach about. To pay it forward, you will be there for so many others who will need wisdom to get through similar situations later. It all has reasons. Sending you Love & Hugs, Peace always, Healing strength, ~Maré

    Reply

  12. Posted by Don Bruce on May 29, 2012 at 10:35 am

    Jerry…..you will beat this…I know! Sending along my prayers. I’ll be in touch soon.

    Reply

  13. Posted by Fred Bass on May 29, 2012 at 4:22 pm

    This is a devastating event Jerry, but not hopeless. Early diagnosis of liver cancer saved my life over 10 years ago, so I have some understanding of how this can be a life altering development. What I have learned is to pay these things the attention that they require, but no more than that. We take the enjoyment of life for granted, until it comes with conditions. Many turn to becoming a professional patient, which drives everyone around them away and robs them of what time they might have left to enjoy life. Keep us posted. Prayers and best wishes.
    Fred

    Reply

  14. Posted by Deirdre on May 29, 2012 at 8:28 pm

    Jerry,
    Thank you for sharing. My positive thoughts & prayers are with you. I still have your post card of Love Trumps Everything hanging in my office, so you are a constant reminder to me of the “Good” in this world. I know you are going to come out a winner at the end of this. Please continue to inform us of how you are doing! Stay strong and keep your head held high!

    Reply

  15. Posted by Pat Taylor on May 30, 2012 at 12:29 pm

    From an Operating Room Nurse and owner of a travel agency where you gave a Martin Luther King Day Presentation to my staff years ago… Surgery!!

    Reply

  16. Posted by Debra Johnson on May 30, 2012 at 2:01 pm

    You have already defeated this with your positive attitude and inner strength! I will send prayer to the Big Guy on your behalf, HE loves you, I know, and will protect you and guide you through this. Lynne sounds like a power house! You are indeed a lucky man! Once you’ve decided on your plan of attack, go at it with your full force! I think that by keeping up with your normal routine, you will be better equipped to deal with it all. Think of it as merely a bump in the road, an inconvenience, and as my Dad always said, ” This too shall pass”. Onward and upward, Jerry. I’ll stay in touch,
    Peace & Love & Light,
    Debra

    Reply

  17. Posted by VW on May 30, 2012 at 9:58 pm

    Not only will you beat this, but you’ll do it in a way that will entertain and enlighten your vast network of friends, as we can see already from the terrific array of responses to the first entry. And then, when you’ve gotten that all-important all clear signal, we can publish this (because it will be funny and scary and brave and informative and utterly YOU) and it will help millions of other men in the same situation.

    Reply

  18. Oh Jerry I’m sorry to hear this! With all the inspiration and outlook you have on life itself, you deserve a positive outcome with all this. Your honesty is just a beautiful thing and so well said! I’m so thankful for you, as you have helped me through so much in the past two years… I hope my vibe and wishes will extend to you! Good luck!!! 🙂

    Reply

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