In general, I'd like to think I'm not one to really over-disclose or seek the spotlight (unless I have a guitar and a stage), but I wanted to put some thoughts down and share with anyone interested.
For me, personally, this past year was full of chaos, life-altering news, a lot of downs, with a few ups. June 29th, 2021, I was in the hospital for a condition I had been battling for about 6 months. I was told I would go through a fairly routine surgery to fix the problem. It would be a challenging situation, but I had no reason to think it would go where it went. I was woken up 13 hours after I had gone under for surgery and told to rest through the night. The following morning, with my wife in the room with me, the doctor informed me I had Stage 3 colon cancer. They had removed all visible signs, but it had perforated my colon wall and latched on to my bladder. This means cells could've traveled through my body, due to the perforation. One of the positives I heard the following day was that it was downgraded to Stage 2, and there were no signs of it spreading through my lymph nodes (in cancer world, that's a big plus). However, chemo was still recommended.
In August I began an aggressive chemo treatment schedule. However, during my second treatment, while finishing the chemo at home, I experienced a terrible reaction that had me in the worst pain I've ever been through in my life - like immediately soaking wet, struggling-to-breath pain. I was carried out of my house at 6 a.m. by EMTs, in front of my wife, 6 year old daughter and 10 year old son. I spent another 6 days in the hospital. This was rock bottom.
Why am I saying all this? Through all of that, all the hard decisions, all the tears, all the fear, all the existential weight bearing down, I knew I could escape those burdens at times and come here. It may sound silly, but this was, and has continued to be, a part of my personal treatment. I have adopted natural protocols, completely changed my lifestyle, and I honestly feel better than I have felt in my entire life. All follow-ups point to being fully healthy, with no signs of cancer. And through it all, the Bengals and this website have been a crucial respite.
So, regardless of what happens Saturday, I want to thank Cincy Jungle, all my fellow CJ'ers, the Brown family (I may be on an island here lol), the Bengals organization, the coaches, the players, the podcasters and the fans. Without all of those things, it would have been harder. This has been a special year, for the team and for me and my family. Here's to enjoying the ride, because, in my humble opinion, that is what it's all about; that's what life is. It is the journey.
Who Dey?!?!?! Now, let's kick some ass and win this Lombardi!!!!!