Greetings to everyone who views this page! Your time, consideration, and donation (even if you do not give to this cause, please give to one on this site, as there are many worth-while causes) are greatly appreciated. I apologize for the length of this correspondence, in advance.
As I type this message, I am at an impasse. I'm a staunch believer and applicator of the ideology "do for self and others - don't wait for hand-outs", but life and men and women, wiser than I, have educated me that it is acceptable to "take a knee" re-focus, and ask for help when it is truly needed. I'm also a little timid, as I see so many Great causes on this site and I hope this cause is deemed worthy to be listed among them.
I am a former United States Marine, a thoroughly pleased husband and the proud father of 9 children (ALL with the same woman - my wife). I've dedicated myself to fitness, exercise, and a healthy lifestyle since my childhood, using attributes of my father, Mr. T, the Incredible Hulk and many others, as my inspiration. Utilizing the examples of these men, and a strong spiritual foundation, I can humbly say, that at the current age of 35, I have never used/abused drugs, never smoked cigarettes, or consumed any alcoholic beverages. I'm not casting down anyone who may have done or do any of the aforementioned activities. I only point out these accomplishments - not to boast or brag, but to give a little background on the extent of the commitment of the humble composer of this text.
My family and I completed a trip to Cairo, Egypt (1 year only - due to the revolution) and to various places in South Africa (6 months), from 2010 -2012 to help do our part in making Gridiron (American) Football a global reality. We continued to pursue this dream upon our return to the States; we purchased new equipment and tried to drum-up interest in the project, then my health issue emerged.
I was diagnosed with cancer at the beginning of this year. This put a hold on everything! I went to different doctors, only for the eerie truth to be reconfirmed time and again. I thought to myself, CANCER?! Me, out of all people? Cancer? This was devastating to me, as I ignorantly thought only smokers, drinkers, addicts, and unfortunately weak, little infants developed cancer - NOT seemingly healthy, exercise-loving, former U.S. Marines!
I had to part ways with the employer I had at the time, due to the condition and the medication needed to deal with the pain, and my inability to perform my duties to the standard I had become accustomed. That lapse in employment made my wife have to balance two jobs to cover for my loss of income. I was lost, depressed and felt that I let the invincibility mystique of the U.S.M.C. down, the players in Egypt & South Africa, and most of all, my family. I currently work for one of the greatest companies in the U.S., so job security should be "a thing of the past"!
After speaking with a number of physicians, the recommended course of action is surgery and a number of follow-up chemotherapy sessions for an extended amount of months, to possibly a year or more. As one of the doctors so eloquently stated - with the most horrible bed-side manor I've ever had the displeasure of hearing, "...hey if you don't get it fixed, you'll be in a pine box in no time, maybe two, three, five years tops!" He was laughing and saying these things to my wife and I, as my wife was crying her eyes out!
So, after doing more in-depth research, and speaking with some doctors who actually felt a human emotion, we are going to pursue non-surgical means, to rid my body of this problem. The alternative medicines and procedures/treatments are not readily available here in the States, so I must seek a most of them from credible sources overseas.
As I continue to embark on this journey, I am sometimes overwhelmed by the thoughts and impending costs of my treatments, medicines, and the medical procedures that await me. When I'm reminded of the human spirit and those whose are fighting with me - those present and afar, it gives me a little hope. As a former Marine, I'm trained to fight until the threat is neutralized, and I'm going to do just that, but my family isn't set-up for a long, drawn-out experience. Our finances, just can't bear the brunt of it alone.
For those who are able to give and do, my family and I sincerely thank you and will be forever grateful for your generosity. Those who are unable to give, I appreciate you taking the time to read some of my story. I am forever and humbly grateful. Semper Fi.
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