When we develop cancer we need to get up and win the race. We have our ups and downs. When we stumble and fall, we must not give up.

The following words may be appropriate.

THE RACE

by D. H. Groberg

Quit! Give Up! You’re Beaten!
They shout at me and plead
There’s just too much against you now
This time you can’t succeed.

But as I start to hang my head in front of failure’s face,
My downward fall is broken by the memory of a race.
And hope refills my weakened will as I recall that scene,
For just the thought of that short race,
Rejuvenates my being.

A children’s race, young boys, young men now, I remember well,
Excitement, sure! But also fear, it wasn’t hard to tell.
They all lined up so full of hope, each thought to win that race,
Or, tie for first, or if not that, at least take second place.

And fathers watched from off the side each cheering for his son.
The whistle blew, and off they went, young hearts and hopes afire.
To win, to be the hero there was each young boy’s desire.
And one boy in particular, whose dad was in the crowd,
Was running near the lead and thought: “My dad will be so proud!”

But as they speeded down the field across a shallow dip,
The first little boy, who thought to win, lost his step, and slipped.
Trying hard to catch himself, his hands flew out to brace
And ‘mid the laughter of the crowd, he fell flat on his face.

So, down he fell, and with him hope – he couldn’t win it now –
Embarrassed, sad, he only wished to disappear somehow.
But as he fell, his dad stood up, and showed his anxious face,
Which to the boy so clearly said: “Get up and win the race.”

He quickly rose, no damage done – behind a bit, that’s all –
And ran with all his mind and might to make up for his fall.
So anxious to restore himself – to catch up and to win –
His mind went faster than his legs; he slipped and fell again!

He wished, then he had quit before with only one disgrace.
“I’m hopeless as a runner now; I shouldn’t try to race.”
But, in the laughing crowd he searched, and found his father’s face
That steady look that said again, “Get up and win the race.”

So, up he jumped to try again – ten yards behind the last –
“If I’m to gain those yards,” he thought, “I’ve got to move real fast.”
Exceeding everything he had gained back eight or ten,
But trying so hard to catch the lead, he slipped and fell again!

Defeat! He lay there silently – a tear dropped from his eye –
“There is no sense in running more; three strikes, I’m out,
why try?”
The will to rise had disappeared, all hope had fled away
So far behind; so error prone, a loser all the way.

“I’ve lost, so what’s the use,” he thought, “I’ll live with my disgrace.”
But, then he thought about his dad, who, soon, he’d have to face.
“Get up!” an echo sounded low. “Get up, and take your place.
You were not meant for failure here, get up, and win the race.”

“With borrowed will get up,” it said, “You haven’t lost all.”
For winning is no more than this: to rise each time you fall.
So up he rose to run once more, and with a new commitment
He resolved that win or lose, at least he wouldn’t quit.

So far behind the others now – the most he’d ever been.
Still, he gave it all he had, and ran as though to win.
Three times he’d fallen stumbling, three times he’d rose again.
Too far behind to hope to win, he still ran to the end.

They cheered the winning runner, as he crossed the line first place,
Head high, and proud, and happy. No falling, no disgrace.
But when the fallen youngster crossed the finish line last place,
The crowd gave him the greater cheer for finishing the race.

And even though he came in last, with head bowed low, unproud,
You would have thought he won the race to listen to the crowd.
And to his dad, he sadly said, “I didn’t do so well.”
“To me, you won!” his father said.
“You rose each time you fell.”

And now when things seem dark and hard and difficult to face,
The memory of that little boy helps me in my race.
For all of life is like that race,
With ups and downs and all,
All you have to do to win is rise each time you fall.

Quit! Give Up! You’re beaten!
They still shout in my face,
But another voice within me says,
“Get up and win the race.”

TEN COMMANDMENTS FOR A CANCER PATIENT

1 – If the doctor says you are going to die, fire your doctor.

2 – Give thanks for life because it is a great gift. Believe you are entitled … and choose to live.

3 – Don’t live in the past but live for today and tomorrow. Don’t allow memories, or dreams, to fade.

4 – What goes both into, and out of, the mouth is important. The magic word will give you the power to get you almost anything you want.

5 – Appoint a great Guardian Angel.

6 – Find the right mentor and develop a plan to supplement medical treatment.

7 – The mind and the spirit are powerful medicines. Learn to soar like an eagle.

8 – The word “optimism” should be a verb, and visualization should be actual.

9 – Jump start your belief system … and hope system … whenever the dip stick is low. Belief stimulates power within yourself. Have faith in faith. Trust in faith.

10 – Anything is possible. Some of whether or not we survive is up to us.

MY STORY

It was 1996. I was sixty-eight years old. I had colon cancer with metastasis to both lobes of the liver. The operating surgeon told me that statistically I had six months to two years to live; he told the family I had four to six months, closer to four. The oncologist told me that I was going to die; I was not a candidate for surgery; I was not a candidate for transplant; they could keep me alive for a short while with chemotherapy but I was still going to die. A second opinion gave me only four months to live.

I believe in surgery, pharmaceuticals and developing our own strategies for survival.

I have outlined my strategies in my little book, “My Home is in the House of Cancer”. If you would like a copy, I will email it to you, PDF, without charge.

I have a set of four CDs – the book in PDF format, and three audio CDs. In that case, I ask for a contribution.

If you have comments and would like to contact me, you may do so at:

Robert “Bob” L. Vandegrift
797 South 350 West
Bountiful, UT 84010

Email: search@xmission.com