Where From Here? End of Chemo Cycle 13

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In the wake of an unfathomable tragedy that penetrates the very depths of one’s soul, it’s been very hard to reflect as I try to do after finishing each cycle of Chemo. The one thing that I did find myself noticing this time is that when something like a mass shooting happens, everyone seems to believe they somehow have the ultimate solution which they also hold with deep conviction. I’ve seen a similar phenomenon within the Cancer world. Everyone is looking for a silver bullet that will instantly cure them of their disease. In fact, companies will create products, often with a pyramid scheme (or the more politically correct term “multi-level marketing”) business model, to cater to this longing desire even though their product doesn’t guarantee a cure (don’t people realize that if there was a cure we would all know about it?). I understand it though, deep down we all want to be able to DO something about the things that cause us harm. I DO believe that there are things that we can DO and that we should DO that will at the very least minimize the chances of that harm returning.

I’ve been in a bit of a haze these last couple months. I obviously attribute it to the Chemo (and being sick a lot), but I think it’s been a particular gray time because I’m right in the middle of treatment and kinda don’t know what to do with myself. After finishing this round I’m officially over the 50 yard line and will continue to work the ball down the field in 49er territory (You hear that SF fans? The Seahawks are coming for you!), in other words the light at the end of the tunnel is coming into focus. Before I reach it though, there are still plenty of play calling, audibles, and hard hits that will take place before I can show off my endzone dance that I’ve been practicing since I took my first Chemo pill (right after Christmas last year) and that’s where I’m at right now. After finishing this round, I’m in a better place of clarity regarding the goal (of reaching the end zone or light at the end of the tunnel) and now the question I’m asking myself is the same question we’re asking ourselves as a country, Where from here and what’s the strategy?

A guiding light for me as I move forward is the one thing that always sticks with me in times of tragedy. It’s not the despair, it’s not the reminder of evil in this world…for me it’s the charitable, compassionate, and courageous spirit of those that rally in support. The heroism of those that put themselves in harms way for the protection of others. I have a hard time believing that we’re going down a path of destruction as a species when I hear those stories. I have account after account of people performing acts of supernatural kindness just through out my journey with Cancer alone, that far outshine any moment of depression, darkness, or doubt I have had to suffer through. I attribute all this to the Amazing gift of Grace. The remarkable stories we hear or experience first hand are all examples of this gift. Grace is what creates joy in sadness, hope in despair, miracles in doubt, and comfort in grief. I personally believe Grace is the only thing that should stir us into action regarding any decision because everything else is simply reactionary. I’m holding tightly to Grace (like a NFL running back) as I move forward.

“Amazing Grace” Verse 3

Through many dangers, toils and snares…
we have already come.
T’was Grace that brought us safe thus far…
and Grace will lead us home.

Thanks for still being here.

Much Love,

Alex

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