View Full Version : Cancer Sucks

02-26-2002, 04:26 PM

While this is not Kung Fu related I need to get this off my chest and perhaps an anonomus forum is the place to do it.

I learned today that my 81 year old grandfather has liver cancer and very little time to live. Sad? Yes. I would like to give you some history of this man and why this hurts so much.

A few years ago the local doctors diognosed him with cancer in his lungs. They wanted to open him up and remove part of his lung and some of his rib cage. At 78 they were concerned that he may not even survive the operation. Deciding we needed a second opinion we took advantage of the fact that we live in Minnesota and went to the Mayo Clinic in Rodchester, MN. Mayo looked at his x-rays and said lets get in there and see what we can figure out. They opened him up, snipped a VERY small part of his lung out, and he was cancer free for the next two years! We still sing the praises of the incredibly talented surgeons there. I won't get into what we think of the local clinic's diognosis though.

Anyway, time passes and at the beginning on 2001 he began having some stomach pains. Again he went to our local clinic and they diognosed him with stomach acid. Had him change his diet...didn't get rid of the pain. Then they thought it was an ulser, then they thought it was gas, and finally they figured it out...right?

The local clinic doctors told him that he had a build up of food in his stomach and that they would go in through his mouth, down his throat, into his stomach with a clamp-like device, and snatch it out of there. After that the pain should be gone. Funny though, they went digging around his stomach and could not find any ball of built up food. There's a shock!

Back to Mayo we go. Mayo tells him he has got Cancer near his stomach and liver area. We are devistated and thinking the worst. Grandpa almost goes home at that time, thinking there is no point in sticking around Rodchester anymore. Family and the doctors convince him to stick it out a little longer and see if anything can be done. After further review we learn that the tumor is incapsulated (which means it is just a ball of cancer and has not spread anywhere yet)

Mayo opens him up and after a 4 hour surgery removes a tumor the size of a small watermellon. 8 pounds!!!

We go home singing the praises of Mayo, and cursing the local doctors...again.

Twice he has been pulled from death's grip by some very talented people at the Mayo Clinic. Sadly it looks as if our good fortune has run out. My grandpa was a bomber pilot in WW2 and a sheet metal worker as a career. He is a genius with anything wood and most everyone in the family has a table, shelf, or dresser built by him.

A funny story...He carries a tape measure everywhere he goes.
He and my grandma were out to dinner a while ago and he saw a table in the restaurant that was just beautiful. He pulled his tape measure out of his jacket pocket and began taking measurements and putting drawings on a coktail napkin. The manager asked if eveything was okay, Grandpa just nodded and said, "yeah, I'm gonna build this tomorrow." Which he did.

As I write this his x-rays and CT scan pictures are on their way to Mayo for another opinion. Grandpa is not though. He has decided enough is enough and has entered a Hospice program.

It looks has if he will not dodge this bullet and our family is devistated to say the least. He will leave 6 children, 7 grandchildren, 3 great grandchildren, and a 79 year old wife that loves him more than anything in the world.

I'm supposed to go to Kung Fu class tonight. I am not going. My grandpa was an incredible father figure to me and I know I will have no focus...I will miss him very much.

In saddness,


KC Elbows
02-26-2002, 04:33 PM
My sympathies go to you and your family. Your grandfather sounds like a good man.

norther practitioner
02-26-2002, 04:47 PM

02-26-2002, 04:52 PM
My condolences.
A relationship like that is one of the things life is all about. Your grandfather sounds like a special man. What you and he have shared, and his wonderful influence on you, you will carry that with you.

take care,

02-26-2002, 05:06 PM
A funny story...He carries a tape measure everywhere he goes.
He and my grandma were out to dinner a while ago and he saw a table in the restaurant that was just beautiful. He pulled his tape measure out of his jacket pocket and began taking measurements and putting drawings on a coktail napkin. The manager asked if eveything was okay, Grandpa just nodded and said, "yeah, I'm gonna build this tomorrow." Which he did.

02-26-2002, 05:17 PM
hi, that was a very touching story about your grandfather. I have a short story to tell about cancer too. a friend of mine recently has been diagnosed with cancer in Hong Kong. He has always been an enthusiastic, friendly, outgoing individual who has had an ongoing passion for kung fu. I was very sad to hear that his cancer was at its third stage. he is currently undergoing chemo in a hospital.
unlike your grandfather this friend of mine is in his early twenties, and I do pray that he will find the strength and willpower to successfully fight off his cancer and live a successful and fulfilling life like your grandfather has.

my regards,

02-26-2002, 05:23 PM
stories like my friends have really made me stop and think about what i want to do in life and what would make me complete. when i was a child i used to think money was everything and that my goal in life to achieve happiness is to become rich. but life is really borrowed time that has to reach an inevitable ending. so i have decided to live my life no longer searching for money as an end goal but to aim towards fulfilling my happiness and the ppl around me that i care about.

a personal thought... :)

Wong Ying Home
02-26-2002, 05:31 PM
Cancer is a MthrF*cker
My mother was diagnosed with stomach and bowel cancer on Oct 18th last year and passed away on December 4th last year.

Word cannot describe the emotions

02-26-2002, 05:40 PM
Hi Jaz.

All the Sympathies to your and your loved ones.

In my Familie we also had some cancer cases, 2 were fatal.

My Grandmother died of facial cancer.
My Mother had Breast cancer.
My Wife's Father died from Throat cancer after a 8yr battle, unfortuenately he died shortly after we got married and I never got to meet him as I was not in Japan than.

All the best wishes.

02-26-2002, 05:56 PM
You ain't alone, folks...

That bi-yi-itch known as cancer has claimed a few of my family as well. A much loved aunt who was barely into her thirties and a great uncle in his 70's. Also my grandmother on my mother's side in her 50's. There are a few more, I'm sure...but I'm at my point where I don't want to count anymore.

And somehow, I don't have it yet.

02-26-2002, 07:47 PM
I know how it is also...

My grandmother died close to 12 yrs ago of Leukemia (may she rest in peace) and my one of my closest friends is fghting off colon cancer. he's ok at the moment, its sick, he's only 18 and its seems like he's been through hell.

02-26-2002, 08:43 PM
same, lost a grandad (i don't really know anyone in my family except immediate family as they all live around the world in various places) and he died of cancer. i saw what HIS cancer did to my mother.

and it's very scary, my dad probably doesn't want me spreading this across the net, but he's 64 and has bad prostate problems - and do you know what the most common form of cancer in the world is?

02-26-2002, 09:00 PM
This reminds me of another story...a friend of mine has a guy friend who is a model...anyway, when he was young his father left his mother. he got sick with cancer when he was young and his mother while working and raising him and taking care of him while he was ill died from the stress and being worn out. this cancer could return at anytime.

he is 21 at the moment or thereabouts.

pretty sad stuff...

02-26-2002, 09:04 PM
Truly sad. Puts our lives (most of the time) into perspective. We all probably knows stories like this.

Eg - sisters friends' dad dies, and at his funeral, her grandad (on fathers side) dies of heart attack.

You think the day would be sad enough already.

02-26-2002, 09:23 PM
I think my grandfather from my mothers side of the family died of cancer, and probably my grandmother too, but i cant remember since i wasnt born.

Ray Pina
02-27-2002, 07:58 AM
Cancer is tough. My mother died of cancer when she was 37 -- I was in HS.
It was misdiagnosed as well, and caught to late. In one year she went from looking healthy, to hurting, to chimotherapy, to looking like a skelaton, to swelling up and then dying. Very terrible time in my life.

In the end, I am a better person for having been through it all. I miss my mother, but if it wasn't for her up bringing I wouldn't have made it.

We go when its the best time to go for all parties involved. You will grieve and then you will learn much. You will grow.

My sympathies.

02-27-2002, 01:16 PM
I'm very sorry, my Father in law was diagnosed with cancer in the abdomen, after going in to hospital for a "simple operation" 4 weeks later he died. Thankfully he wasn't in much pain and still had his sense of humour.
Look after the rest of your family and be strong

Ray Pina
02-27-2002, 01:29 PM
This was about, wow, almost 10 years ago now. Thankfully we all made it through.

My advice is be with the family when it happens. We all went inward and almost collapsed. My father got strung out on coke. My sister had a break down and then was on and still might be on anti-depressents. My brother's best friend committed suicide a few months later and my bro didn't speak for a while, he was only 12.

Me, I was playing football and then quit about 3 months into college to just surf. Smoked a lot bud, went to a lot of dead shows, read alot. It was a sad time. My father was missing most of the time and then one day I found him hanging himself, I had to lift him up and off the rope. I actually hit him. I couldn't believe it when I did it, but he desrved it.

He went away for a few months and now is painting and just had apiece published in an art mag. I'm proud of him. He loved my mom. Everybody's OK. It was our Dark Period. I learned a lot about life, change. I also realized the importance of really living a life seeing one taken away so young. My mom was only 10 years older then me when she died.

I want to be an author. I want to be a great martial artists. I'm not waisting time because there is no time to waist. I'd like to work really hard now, so I can enjoy my life and family in the future. Though I know myself, and there will always be some challenge I want to overcome.

Please don;t take this as a boo hoo :( post. Not at all. To me this is life. Ups and downs. Its natural. I realize downs are not bad, a time when a change is beign set up. I wouldn't change a thing. I am happy. I have found a real master and I wouldn't have if ONE thing was different.

Life is funny.

02-27-2002, 02:28 PM
sorry to hear that. cancer does suck.

02-28-2002, 06:22 AM

Thank you very much for the kind words and private messages.
Our family is rallying together and my grandpa is taking this is stride.

The doctors have given him six months...Dam.

He has totally accepted the situation and while I won't say he's at peace with the world, he is handling everything pretty well.

He and my grandma went to Red Lobster's Lobster Fest last night and he's going to fix the pipes in my sisters house today. Hard to believe that before summer is over he will be gone.

The doctors have set him up an appointment with Hospice and we've been told that he'll have his good days and bad. Eventually his organs will begin to shut down and he'll need 24 hour care. Grandpa says when it gets too bad he'll stop eating and accepting water. Doctors say he'll be dead 4 days after he does that.

<heavy sigh...>


Thanks again for your prayers. My family is greatful.