Celebrating 20 Years of Prostate Cancer Survivorship
on July 4th, 2020
My father's life was taken by prostate cancer on Christmas Eve 1999 at age 78. Three months later in March 2000, I was diagnosed with the same disease. Without our knowledge, we both had prostate cancer during the final stages of his life and maybe longer. Realizing this and my diagnosed condition, I was determined to find what I considered the best treatment for me wherever that might take me.
The plane that we boarded was headed to Atlanta, GA for treatment at the Radiotherapy Clinics of Georgia who offered a combination radiation treatment not offered in Boston, or at any other treatment center at that time. I was as surprised as anyone that my treatment selection was taking me here. I was trusting my life with this treatment based on my research alone, and my prayers, without any recommendation from a doctor or medical professional.
As Juarez and I (it really is a family affair) celebrate 20 years of survivorship on July 4th, 2020, we are reminded of just how much our lives have been impacted by our prostate cancer journey. Looking over the 20 years our prayers have been answered. We have been highly blessed and have many things to celebrate.
When we began our prostate cancer journey, we had three children, each has married giving us three in-laws and they have provided us with five wonderful grandchildren. Our immediate family has expanded from five to thirteen and we celebrate and enjoy this blessing every day.
Juarez and I celebrated twenty more wedding anniversaries in 2020 for a total of fifty-three. This has been a wonderful ride.
I celebrate my prostate cancer research prior to and following my treatment. This allowed me to author two books and to start the Prostate Health Education Network (PHEN). PHEN is accepting the challenges towards ending the prostate cancer racial disparity, and being a leader in the fight against prostate cancer.
We celebrate my health! The treatment selection that I chose in the year 2000 has served me well. While there have been challenges, overall, my prostate cancer journey has been relatively smooth.