Sunday, October 12, 2008

Unless a seed falls to the earth and dies...

Yesterday I became aware of a young man named Tim Fadel who recently died of cancer. I was so touched by his courage I've posted some of his journey:

I am 31 years old and am living each day as a gift from God. I have a cancer called synovial sarcoma. It started in my lower back many years ago. I have been with my amazing wife for almost 13 years and have a ten year old boy and an eight year old girl. I am thankful that I got married when I was 18. It is a miracle that we have had this long together and daily I thank God for this miracle. Since I started this site 4 years ago we have gone through many tests, surgeries, chemos, radiations, and other medical practices. I am now on hospice to handle all of my comfort needs.

Since I have been diagnosed I have had a chance to get to know some amazing people. I can't thank all of them but I feel that in some way I try to make anyone who has connected with me feel valued and special for being able to share in that time with me. Does that make sense? You are all amazing, not because you have been with me but because we chose to try relating and living instead of ignoring hard things and medicating our selves due to pain and fear (Of course there has been some of that too but that is part of human nature.) Of few of my friends have been friends with other types of cancer. I have lost a few to it and miss them greatly. It is a strange place to be in when you have a terminal cancer and live a longer time as others around you with a terminal illness. I think it might be a little like a soldier wondering why the person next to him/her didn't make it but they did. I just feel I am still here and I can still accomplish something.

So today I type some more.

I have ups and downs. I don't really have a normal time. It’s a daily change and a daily lottery to see what I will feel like. Lately I have had meds changed and there have been some good results to my quality of life but also some crazy results. I am on a steroid that makes me want to eat until I get sick and then eat more. I like food so this is mostly ok. I also talk a lot and am irritable. The good part is I am breathing a little better (although I am on permanent oxygen assistance) and I am not feeling pain (except when eating too much again.)

I have done a lot in the time I have been diagnosed. I have been able to work through some of it and take breaks through some of it. I went skydiving, went to the Caribbean, and went to Disney World, Alaska, Michigan, and other great places. I have had the time to plan what I am going to leave for my family in the form of a legacy or memory. This site is one of those things. I have written letters, recorded videos, recorded audio cds of me talking and playing music, and I have a lot of pictures. I just hope everyone knows I love them. I know they will.

I don't fear for death. I have a lot of peace. A lot comes from the work we have been able do due during this long illness but mostly comes from an inner peace and joy from God. There is nothing like knowing the certainty of God's love and plan even in the midst of the most disgusting situations. I have felt this from the beginning. I have had times where I doubted it and struggled but again, what kind of relationship doesn't have those kinds of hurdles to jump through.

Tim's last words before going home -

I am here now.
I am finally home.
I can breathe. I can run. I can see color.
I am certain of love.
I have complete joy and complete peace.
I am exploring every corner of my imagination.
I am laughing with my family.
(Job says "hi" and not to stress about the little things)
I am singing and playing instruments.
I am playing ping pong and basketball.
I am resting.
I am free.
I am here with you.
I am here with God....
Oh and I may have an overdue library book too, if someone could check on that for me, thanks.

Love, Tim


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