Tuesday, October 16, 2012

A Decade Since...

Today is a very significant day for me.

One this day TEN YEARS AGO I was told that I HAVE CANCER.

I remember this day as if it was yesterday. I was in a small hospital examination room and in walked some new doctor I had never met. Her name was Dr. Schiff and after a short introduction she relayed the news. You would think that a relationship with another person who shares this kind of horrible news shortly after meeting them would not progress into an amazing relationship.

However, that is exactly what has happened. On this day ten years ago I met the awesome, wonderful, and best doctor in the world. In the decade since we had that wonderful introduction I have put her through a lot. I am not the best patient in the world. I make a lot of decisions that give her stress, but I am thankful for her caring, loving, and mother-like approach she has with me and my cancer treatment.

The few weeks preceding this day I have done A LOT of soul searching and pondered a lot on the past decade of my life. That without Dr Schiff would most likely would not have happened.

In the Last Decade I have:

-Graduated from High School
-Survived a 1.71 G.P.A. during my first year at college
-Served a 2-year Mission for my church
-Had a academic paper accepted to a national conference
-Graduated from College with a B.A. in Communications
-Been a Best Man at a Friends Wedding
-Had Emergency heart surgery
- Made life long friends
- CouchSurfed numerous times at complete strangers houses
- Kissed a girl in a bar
- Bungee jumped off the highest indoor bungee jump
- Won a dance contest at a summer camp
-Traveled to eat amazing food
- Been to many concerts: Imagine Dragons, Fun., Head and the Heart, Sleigh Bells, and others
-Groomsmen in another friends wedding
-Attend my Grandfather's funeral of whom I was named after
-Been interviewed by the Seany Foundation to promote awareness for childhood cancer
-Been 94.1 Radio station in San Diego's kid of the week
-Drove 4 hours for a hamburger
- went skydiving
- Interviewed for a documentary about life after cancer
-Took a Road trip from Utah to Washington D.C.
-Had 10 surgeries
-Been to Australia, Canada, 26 states, Fiji
- Worked for the Make-A-Wish Foundation
-Been to 13 baseball stadiums
- Front Page Story written about me in the Daily Universe
- Attend the 100th Anniversary of the Calgary Stampede
- 10 years of holidays and memories with my family
- Started a Masters program
- Been constipated many times
- Slept at Mark Madsen's house

I have been blessed with a lot of amazing experiences in my life since October 16, 2002. And after this time of reflection and self mediating I have come to the realization that most of these amazing opportunities would not have come to pass had it not been for having cancer.

Yes, I have cancer and it is an intergal part of my day-to-day life; however, it does not define me as a person. That being said I am glad that I have cancer. It has molded me into the person I am today by effecting my personality and outlook on life.

Although sometime it sucks being stuck at home sick and depleted of stamina to go about day-to-day activities ..I would not trade not having cancer for anything.

So, I raise my glass and toast the amazing Dr. Schiff, Cancer, and living each day positively. Here is to another 10 years of school, traveling, eating, treatments, surgeries, and constipated nights.

Cancer cannot take away your will to live...Only you can!

Here is a motto I live by: What is the point of extending life if you are not going to live it!


Sarah said...

Thanks for the inspiration, Dave! You are incredible!

Hilary Jan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Hilary Jan said...

Dave your perspective amazes and inspires me! I am so grateful that you are a part of my life.

Liz said...

Dave Chalk, I just have such a great love for you.

Caroline said...

And to decades more of adventures!