Hearing the “R” word

After investing so much emotion to support my brother Jeff in his cancer battle, I’m having trouble forming the words to express my joy over this.  Since so many of you followed the story, prayed for his health and gave money to my marathon fundraiser last year, I’d like you to hear the latest update in Jeff’s own words:

“Seldom in one’s life can a single word evoke so much emotion as the one Mo and I heard at Dr. Singhal’s office… “Remission!”

It caught us both by surprise as Joseph, Dr. Singhal’s P.A. was rolling through the recap of all my medical procedures this past year; 12 weeks of chemo, 4 day stem cell prep, stem cell harvest, 2-week stem cell transplant, 3-month recovery, 2nd stem cell transplant, 3-month recovery, 4-weeks chemo, then a pause.

“All of your labs are negative for Myeloma. You are in remission by the old standards”! He went on to explain the recent “stricter” definition implemented 4 yrs ago which requires my Kappa Light Chain marker to be between 0-2, I’m at 43 and dropping.

Mo and I made eye contact as I was sitting on the exam table and the tears started to well up in both our eyes. I was intently listening though to Joseph to make certain there wasn’t some giant “but” hanging in the air to squash the moment and the reality of what we had just heard. He continued that we should do 4 more Velcade treatments to get rid of the last few myeloma cells that were loitering like a small mob of punks looking for trouble (my creative license about the mob.) Full throttle, no mercy for these remaining cells!

It is so strange to really see a finish line now, after beginning this run not knowing if it would be 20 miles or 200 miles! Now there is a ribbon suspended across the road. That’s why it is so fitting that I signed up to race on the MMRF marathon team in the Chicago Marathon on Oct. 9th as the only Myeloma patient on a team of family and friends of MM folks. Also fitting is that it will be my 13th anniversary with my bride. It will be a very lucky anniversary indeed. I also just secured a spot for this year’s Chicago-Mackinac race, my 19th. This 333 mile yacht race will be a true celebration of adventure and move me one year closer to my 25 year goal.

In closing, we are still in a bit of stunned disbelief, even though we have focused, prayed, lived, prepared, suffered and fought to the best of our abilities to achieve this result! Mo and I owe so much to so many for pushing, pulling, and lifting us to this point of the journey. One year, one month, and one week ago the world really changed for Mo and I. It just changed again!”

All our love, Jeff & Ramona

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14 Comments on “Hearing the “R” word”

  1. Anna Gardner Says:

    What wonderful news! You have been blessed! Stay on the road to recovery and try not to wear yourself out racing!

    Anna Gardner

  2. Roland Says:

    An amazing run! Congratulations, to Jeff and family! After all, he certainly did not run it all by himself. This is a great testimony to God’s presence, faith, and the healing power and focus of the Universe and so many in your “clan.”

    Thanks for taking us with you, Dave. Just made my day. Also, my business associate’s dad has been going through treatments and testing of his own – and when I cheered regarding your brother, and he inquired as to what the deal was, it reminded him that his own dad had gone in for test results for “c” and got the same result – zero show!

    Thanks so much.

    Roland.

  3. provenuts Says:

    That’s awesome. I’m glad to hear the good news !!!

  4. Mike T Says:

    Thanks for my extra reason to smile today!

    Congratulations to you and your brother!
    Not to discount this at all, but I am not surprised. All of the blog stories about your brother, yourself, and this community over the past year have been shining examples of the power and benefits of prayer, positive thinking, the law of attraction, the Secret, etc. Whether it your brother and family thinking on the positives and all they have grateful for to the collective might of a community thinking strongly. I remember thinking I know he’s already cured and picturing him happy, healthy, and leading a long life (it just takes a little for the body to catch up sometimes).

    I believe this same approach is why my mother has been cancer free, cured, and healthly for over 10 years and counting as well.

    Let’s continue to build on this, help or raise money where we can, but ultimately share our positivity and know in our hearts the rest of the world is healthy also.

  5. Nora Says:

    Everyone else has been so eloquent, so let me say this: WOO HOO and YIPPEEEE!

  6. LaRhonda (aka Ronnie) Smith Says:

    You really don’t owe the people a thank you.Just look up,we know who is responsible for everything!Still praying,and you have fought so hard,it is past your turn.Keep recovering and stay as positive as you have been!A big congratulations to you!


  7. It can be postulated and attributed to many secondary and tertiary factors….but bottomline Christ is your “Big C” Jeff…to HIm be the Praise and Honor and Glory.


  8. CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    R- Relief
    E- Endurance
    M- Miracles happen.
    I – Infinite possiblities
    S – Serenity
    S – Strength
    I – Infinite love
    O- Optimism
    N – New beginnings

    Here’s to ALL THE THINGS that Remission brings to life on top of renewing life perspective on a whole new level.

    Peace, blessings, love, hope and warm congratulations……
    So wonderful!!!

  9. Rich Hopkins Says:

    Praise God David.

  10. Jeri Hill Says:

    So happy to hear the good news!!!

  11. Kristie Says:

    The joy and relief felt for you and your family is shouting out loud over my skin in the form of goosebumps. Like Nora, I’m in the woo hoo, yippee, awesome mode right now. Thank you God for granting Jeff, David and family more time together on this earth.

  12. Joe Franklin Says:

    Jeff, Most of us can’t even imagine what you are going through and what a sense of relief you must feel. It’s true God has a hand in this. But it is what we do with God’s gifts that makes the difference. You’ve made us all stronger for what you have gone through. Continue the good fight and we will be praying for you and your family!

  13. Maneesh Rai Says:

    David,
    Congratulations to you, Jeff and your entire family. I possibly can’t even imagine the joy and relief your family must be going through. I am sure your effort, help, prayers and the effort of your families made it easier for all of you to come out successfully. Congratulations to your entire family.


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