Waking up this morning I went to let my dog out. As I open the door, the cold air hit me and woke me out of my sleepy state. I rubbed my eyes, and as I looked I could see the front yard and the street blanketed with a nice crisp white snow. No cars, no people…just the wind howling, the air making your noise stiff, and the bright white framed by the light blue sky and overcast clouds.
Today is Thanksgiving.
I walk back into the house, close the door behind me, and feed my dog. As he is nibbling on his kibble I begin to think of my father. My dad loved my dog. He would bring him treats, made sure he had new toys, and would always overfeed him when he watched over Miles. (Miles is my dachshund named after Miles Davis)
I go to sit on the love seat. I can feel the soft cool leather on my legs. There is a large plant to my left from my fathers funeral. My thoughts go to him.
I will admit, I am sad that my father is not with me today. We both loved fall, Thanksgiving, and being with family. Mixing in football, wine, tequila, and stories from his past. Thanksgiving was always one of my favorite holidays with my father. Just being with him, listening, and him remembering the stories of his childhood and young adult life; the things that made him the man he was, and helped him to instill the traits to make me the person I am currently. It was always a tremendous amount of impact.
My father always taught me to stop, give thanks, and to appreciate the little things in life.
I am thankful for family and friends. I am thankful for my parents. I am thankful for my father. I am happy and blessed that I was able to have my father direct, guide, and educate me on life, love, and that say/do ratio. I am fortunate to have him as long as I did. I am sad and lonely at times, but still thankful that I had the privilege of calling him dad.
I am thankful for my mother. I am thankful that she is still here. I know that our relationship is on opposite ends of the spectrum from my father and I, but I am glad that she is still there as my connection to my father, my emotional rock, and to love me for the person I am, and not what I am perceived to be. I appreciate her advice, her love, and her unconditional support.
I am thankful for my friends. For those people that see me for who I am. For those that allow me to just let go, immerse myself in the crazy and sarcastic side of myself, and enjoy spending time with one another. I am thankful for all of your care, love, and consideration. I am happy to know that you make sure I take care of myself, get the sleep I need, and do not work myself into oblivion.
I am thankful for having a profession that allows me to combine my wisdom (the little bit that I have), my passion, and my natural given talents to converge and focus on the things that I love the most. Technology, people, process, and storytelling. I am one of the most fortunate people in the world to get paid to do the things that I love the most, and to be surrounded by numerous teams of people that share my love and passion for what we do. I am thankful to be able to work in a position that allows me to travel and to meet hundreds of people from various walks and parts of the globe.
Most importantly, I am thankful for cancer.
Cancer is the one thing that took away one of the people that I loved and cherished the most in life, my father.
Yet cancer is also the one thing in life that has allowed me to be who I am, to do the things I have done, to combine my passion, my love, and talents, and to allow them to converge into making a difference in the world. Cancer impacts millions of people globally. I may have only been able to impact and touch the lives of a few hundred thousand to date, but cancer gives me something to strive towards….to touch the lives of millions of people, globally, and to make a positive impact today, tomorrow, and way past my time here on this planet.
Cancer has wrapped itself around my life and my world. It is a blanket that I accept. I may struggle at times to kick it off, to escape it, to run away and hide from it, but I always come back , I come back to cancer.
Cancer has been the story of many people in this world. Past, present, and future. Cancer is part of me. Cancer is a big part of my story.
I hope to be part of the many stories that impact cancer and bring it to its knees.
Today I am thankful for the story of cancer, and I hope one day soon, cancer will not be thankful that I was a part of the story that made it fall.
I am thankful to all of you who read, who struggle, who fight, who collaborate, and who push me to be a better person, a better family member, and a better leader in this crazy world of healthcare.
Thank you to all of you that allow me to be me, to simply be Andy, to be a geek that has a story to tell, and several stories about cancer.
Thank you for listening to me, listening to my fathers story, to my story, and to the story of all of us.
Dad, thank you for allowing me to be your son. I love you.
What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving, what is your story?
As always, you can feel free to contact me at: CANCERGEEK@GMAIL.COM
~CancerGeek#PtExp #PX #cancer #hcldr #hccosts #hcsm #stories #storytelling #lcsm #bcsm #LCAM2013 #clinicaltrials