Hi, my name is Rick. I am a 33-year-old living in Washington, DC. In August 2004, at the age of 31, I was diagnosed with colon cancer. Since then I have been through surgery, chemotherapy, immunotherapy, and radiation to treat the disease. I am currently on my third course of chemotherapy and the initial signs are that it's helping to suppress the cancer.
I am starting this blog to tell my stories of what it's like to live with cancer as a young adult. It can be a lonely situation -- people don't expect to get cancer at a young age. So for one thing it's a total surprise and forces you away from whatever plans you had for adulthood. But beyond that one's peers haven't experienced cancer themselves or among their friends before, so they often don't know how to relate to you as a cancer patient.
My intention is to help guide those who are dealing with cancer in young adulthood, either as a patient or as the friends and family of one. And I hope to connect with others out there who are going through this experience. My stories will be personal; they might not be what you or the average patient should expect. They might also be graphic. I grew up in a family of doctors so I'm fairly comfortable discussing bodily functions. Dealing with cancer treatment has forced me to become even more casual in managing and discussing the sometimes icky things that bodies do.
I will update this blog from time to time with stories of how I got to where I am today as a 2-1/2 year and counting cancer survivor. And I will update it with new stories of how cancer is affecting my life. I hope to spark some degree of enlightenment as we go along.