FOOD FOR THE SOUL
The tests are completed, the visits to the various doctors have been made, the diagnoses has been determined, and this week marks the beginning of my ex-husbands fight against cancer. The final verdict is: Stage 2, T 3, N 0, M 0. It is amazing how much information it available from those few letters and numbers. Those words and letters have determined what game plan will be needed to rid the cancer from Bills body. Basically his cancer is Stage 2, which means that the tumor has gone through the layers of the colon, T 3 means the same as Stage 2 but it stages the tumor itself, N 0 means that there are no nodes involved at this point, and M 0 means that the cancer has not metastasized to any other organs of his body. As a health care professional I know that it could have been much worse, but it means that Bill has a fight on his hands. It was thought that surgery would be the plan, but now it seems that he will endure 6 weeks of chemo and radiation to shrink the tumor before it can be removed. It will be much easier to remove the tumor if it is smaller because there will hopefully be more good colon wall available for a surgical anastomosis.
My children, realizing that their dad is going to go through some financial hardship from this “fight” have decided to organize a fund-raiser, or a benefit to help with the costs of his treatment. The chemo alone, which is in tablet form, is $9,000 a month. So it is overwhelming to even fathom how much he will be in debt 6 months from now, when he is cancer free. Yes, he has insurance, and it is good insurance, but as with insurance co-pays and deductibles…the amount will still be staggering. When we were married, he was a deputy sheriff, small town police officer and then Chief of Police for our town, until retirement 6 years ago. Along the way he has made many friends and enemies….as is normal with anyone working in law enforcement. Last June he remarried and has a wonderful wife, who has become my friend. God certainly knew what he was doing, putting Mary in his life so he would not have to fight this battle alone. Yesterday the date and time for the benefit was posted on all of our Facebook pages, asking for ideas, help, possible donation, support and prayers. The immediate response was overwhelming and so warming to my soul. When my son initially told me about the benefit, I told him to put me down for the catering aspect of the evening. That was where I felt my talents could best be utilized. I, myself, had 17 ladies volunteer to help me with the food within the first 2 hours. We had 9 people donate various baskets and other goods to be auctioned off. A friend of mine used to have a band, which I found out could not be resurrected, but he has some ideas and would get back to me. Plus, I have had offers of help from people who have run fundraisers in the past.
This morning I checked each of my kids Facebook pages and started to write down names of their friends that have offered help, or are networking with people they know to get items for auction. What started as a simple thought yesterday, has picked up steam, and it has snowballed into something wonderful. It has restored my faith in mankind and hopefully has humbled Bill to his core. This is the wonderful thing about small towns, we always put aside any bad feelings and pull together to help anyone in need. It also proves to me that you should always be kind to those around you, because you never know when you may need their help. People are more likely to remember an act of kindness, and will usually reciprocate those feelings in return. I am truly humbled by the responses we have received and am sure that the benefit will be a smashing success. To anyone reading this, remember that donations are always welcome, especially any cool and unusual things we can auction off. So, my friends, I will keep you posted about the progress of his treatments, and the super benefit that will occur in 2 short months. And for the record, yes it is odd for the ex-wife to be as involved as I am, but all I can tell people is that “it’s the right thing to do”….and I will have no regrets either way. My mom raised me well, as I have my children. Please keep Bill in your prayers, and take the time to do something nice for those you love, or even a stranger in need…for that is a wonderful feeling indeed♥