In 2012 i was diagnosed with advanced non hodgkins lymphoma and spent more than 22 weeks last year in hospital receiving chemo in around-the-clock sessions and doing battle with neutropenic fevers when my immune system was beaten back to the point we made measurements in single digits instead of 1000's. And throughout these (sometimes) challenging times, i learned that doing battle with cancer wasn't made up of horror story after horror story, but rather a huge learning curve that i managed to ride out with the motto: A chuckle a day, will keep diseases away! I also learned that there were a few key bits of priceless knowledge that I would have welcomed had I known more of the road ahead of me. Always keep your spoon, is the title of a short book that i intend to write that is a funny but insightful tale of things you want to know BEFORE you find yourself hospital bound for anything from an overnite to a fortnight. (You always keep your spoon off your meal tray because you will probably be hungry only when it's next to impossible to get a crumb from the cafeteria. And on the hospital floor, your dear and darling nurses have treats to share; BUT - rarely have the utensils needed to get them from container to mouth! You can eat any of it with a spoon but not all of it with a fork. Hence the title: Always keep your spoon.
In March of 2012, 3 days before my 48th birthday I was in the hospital getting a diagnosis of of advanced non-hodgekins lymphoma and over the next 9 months I had 22 hospital stays - the shortest 6 days, the longest 23 days. And during these times, I learned a few things about staying upbeat, sane, and alive and how important it was to find a way to laugh each and every day. I don't claim credit for this IDEA, but I took it to heart when hospital caretakers - nurses, technicians, food service - began (independently of each other) telling me: "Mr. D..., you need to write a book!" I got the same message from several friends and family members. All of them saying that what I'd learned about getting through the hard parts of cancer treatments would help others too. Well, all of those folks must see something in what i have to (potentially) say, LOL, so OK - It looks like I am gonna try and write a book.