My Dad was diagnosed with stage II colon cancer in late 2011. In early 2012, he had surgery to remove the cancerous part of his colon. Though he had clean margins and no signs of spreading his doctors were watching it closely. Within the year some suspicious spots on his lungs appeared to growing in size. At the start of 2013, he was diagnosed with stage IV colon cancer.
The week after his first grandchild was born, Dad started his first of what would become lifelong chemo treatments. He went for chemo every two weeks for the next 7 years. Over the years he sought different medical teams and opinions, they all said the same thing, knowing that the 5 year survival rate is pretty darn low: “what an honor it is to meet you.”
My Dad was a fighter through and through, never complaining and enjoying everyday his “feet hit the ground.” In January of 2020 the chemo treatments stopped working. My Dad sought new avenues, never giving up hope. Over the next 6 months he tried two different chemo pills that many patients couldn’t tolerate, let alone stick with them for months. He was certainly knocked down, but continued to fight and will his way to survival.
By that summer it was apparent that the drugs were no longer working. In August, doctors discovered his cancer had yet again metastasized, this time to his brain. This time it was ten days of radiation to shrink the tumor, anything to buy more time. Dad fought to the bitter end, continuing to teach us about strength, family, and love.
My father died on October 25th 2020. For me, even while he was fighting cancer, but more after his death, I wanted to be involved, raise awareness, try and protect any one single person from having to go through what my Dad did. I found the Tour De Tush and thought, what a great idea! I was riding for those who couldn’t! I was riding for my Dad.
I continued my ride last year adding another person to my why, my uncle. This will mark the third year I have participated in the Tour de Tush, and I find it inspiring, maybe even a little therapeutic. I am “meeting” people who have had all different experiences– sharing stories, journeys, and raising awareness. If that means one person thinks about their “tush” differently I feel like I’ve helped.
Join Barbara and her team, the Rad Plaids, in the 3rd annual Tour de Tush. All money raised goes to colorectal cancer research.TOUR DE TUSH TOUR DE TUSH ON STRAVA GET SCREENED
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Your dad would be so proud of you. He certainly was a fighter. His fight to be your dad for as long as he could is a sign of his love for you. Keep it up! You and your dad are inspirations. I can kind of understand what you went through. My mother, bless her soul had lung cancer. Being a nurse aide for most her life in the recovery unit, died from that cancer with no treatment. She had seen too much what patients went through. She was ready to meet her Maker.
I will try and help the Colon Cancer Coalition……too old to bike or walk anymore.
Take care of yourself and feel you Father in the breeze as you bike in the Tour de Tush.