Prostate Cancer: A 3-Month Checkup

Whether you have been with me all the way or are just joining me here on my site, let me say THANK YOU! I know that your time for reading is limited and I want you to know that I very much appreciate how many of you take the time to read what I write and consistently check in with me to see how I am doing! I’m honored, to say the least!

It is very hard to believe that three months ago today, on April 7, 2014, I went in to have a radical retropubic prostatectomy–prostate cancer surgery! These last three months have been a wild ride, but also an extremely transformative period in my life.

If you are not already familiar with the story of my Prostate cancer diagnosis and surgery, you can read the full details starting with my original post on February 22, 2014.

So much has happened in my life since my last post about this on Easter, April 20, 2014, that it’s hard to know where to start.

The recovery process was harder and longer than I had anticipated. The hardest part was not the physical recovery–it was the mental, emotional part that took the hardest toll on me. The news of the cancer, the decision to have the surgery, the complications and blood loss during the surgery, and some extremely stressful personal issues that I was dealing with at the time, all settled into my head like a fog that just would not lift. There were days that stretched into weeks when I could not really think much beyond the next hour or two. There were days when I just wanted to stay in bed hoped that I would wake up from a bad dream. I cried more than I have ever cried in my life. I was an emotional mess!

I knew, however, that my success rate for getting through hard days is 100%, so far, and that if I focused on doing just what I needed to do one day at a time, and not worrying about tomorrow, that I would eventually come out on the other side of the cloud and see the sun again.

So I did the hard work of just getting through each day. I took a hard look at my life, who I am, and what I believe. I really had to put my own teachings into practice. I had to be my own Life Coach. I had to edit and rewrite the stories I was telling myself about my life, health, relationships, and circumstances. I had to write new chapters (thoughts) in which I emerged victorious, healthy, and happy!

And let me say, right now, that I did emerge from the cloud and the sun is shining more brightly than I could have possibly imagined that it would even 2 months ago!

Physically, I am doing so much better than my surgeon anticipated I would be doing at this point. I am healing, getting stronger, and getting more of my bodily functions back than he thought I would have by now. I have already surpassed where he was hoping I would be at the 6-month mark!

Mentally and emotionally, I am have come to a place that is even better than I was before I received my diagnosis! My enthusiasm for life and my faith in the future is stronger than it has ever been!

When I got my diagnosis back in February, I put much of my life on hold. I stopped writing my current book, LifeThoughts; I took a leave of absence from my own company; and I put many of my Life Coaching students on hold. The decision to put those parts of my life on hold was one of the best decisions I have ever made. I believe this is true because of the personal transformation I have gone through in the last five months. I am a different person with a different perspective on life and living now. My perspective and philosophy have not radically changed, but they have been brightly polished and intensified. I am better person, a better version of me, than I was five months ago!

Because of what I have gone through, I know for a fact that I am a better writer and that my book will be a much better book than I had originally envisioned–I have so much more to share with the world! Because of the internal work I had to do on my own thinking and outlook on life, I am a much better Life Coach than I was before all of this–and several of my students have noticed and benefited from my own transformation!

I am back to running again, and have a personal goal to qualify for and run the Boston Marathon by April 2017 and I have no doubt I will accomplish that goal! In fact, the events and changes in my life over the last five months have caused me to completely revamp most of my life goals and I am feeling more confident than ever that I will be able to accomplish them.

My Life Coaching practice is back and better than ever; I’m receiving more invitations for speaking engagements and to write contributions for significant publications; and I am so excited to have been selected as the guest speaker and Life Coach Ambassador for the 2015 Run For Fun Cruise!

I’d like to close this update by sharing with you something I wrote in my personal journal on the morning of July 4th:

Happy 4th of July!! Independence Day! I am feeling a true emotional independence and am so thankful for the peace this brings to my life. I am no longer shackled by the chains of fear, painful memories, regrets, failures, missed opportunities, or broken promises. I see everything that has taken place in my life as being perfectly timed experiences meant to teach me, shape me, strengthen me, and to make me what I am today. I am thankful for everything–absolutely everything! I have no complaints, whatsoever!

It is my sincere hope and desire that you are at, or can soon get to, the same place of peace in your soul. A place where you can honestly look back at everything–absolutely everything–that has taken place in your life and say “Thank you!” for them. I never thought I would be able to say “thank you” for cancer, or for all of the other very painful things in my past, but that’s where I am. I see how all of it was perfectly timed by the Creator to bring me to where I am and to make me the man I am now. And, more importantly, continue to shape me into the man I am going to be!

I don’t know what tomorrow holds, but I’m looking forward to the journey!

25 Responses to Prostate Cancer: A 3-Month Checkup

  1. Asma July 7, 2014 at 7:18 AM #

    thank you so much to sharing my inspiration

  2. Jonelle July 7, 2014 at 8:01 AM #

    Thank-you so much! My morning reflection came in an unexpected form, your email!

    • Bruce July 7, 2014 at 8:09 AM #

      I love when that happens! No coincidence–perfectly timed!

  3. susy July 7, 2014 at 10:24 AM #

    I’m glad to hear your doing well after your cancer scare. God always be with you and make you stronger everday. I enjoy your writting, it inspires me daily. Thank you for helping me enjoy a positive life. God Bless You

  4. Brenda Larson July 7, 2014 at 4:43 PM #

    Bruce,
    My husband had the same surgery in 1998. It contributed to his Salvation. It was an extreme God time for both of us. All these years later he is extremely healthy happy and whole. You are such an inspiration and I understand the process you are experiencing. We serve an awesome God who creates awesome people like you. Thank you for sharing and so glad to hear your amazing progress. It just keeps getting better. God bless you.

    • Bruce July 8, 2014 at 1:15 PM #

      Brenda, thank you for those kind words! I’m so glad to hear about your husband and his progress. Blessings to you both!

  5. Catherine July 7, 2014 at 8:23 PM #

    Great story. You are brave and an inspirational to others.

  6. Melinda Viergever Inman July 7, 2014 at 9:53 PM #

    This is awesome, Bruce! I am so glad to hear about your recovery and your emergence from these last months stronger and more grateful and wise from your life experiences. I’m going to cling even more tightly to your words in the coming months – I’m awaiting the diagnosis of an auto-immune disorder that has been dragging me down for the last year. Your words have kept me pressing forward. Blessings to you as you move forward and uplift all of us with your words and your example!

    • Bruce July 8, 2014 at 1:19 PM #

      Thank you, Melinda! I’m glad you’ve found comfort and encouragement in my writing–that keeps me motivated. I will certainly keep you in my thoughts and prayers as you go through your journey. Please keep me updated as you get more information!

  7. Wendy July 8, 2014 at 1:56 AM #

    Although we have never met, I have read everything you’ve posted on Twitter and as I complete my dissertation finish line, you inspire me like no other. A former triathlete myself, (had to put my sports training on thr back burner while in graduate school), as soon as I become a “doctor”, I’m back to training for my first marathon. God bless you Bruce. The handprint of God is on you!!

    • Bruce July 8, 2014 at 1:20 PM #

      Wendy, the doctoral dissertation is a kind of marathon in itself! Best wishes with it!

  8. Dan Miller July 8, 2014 at 8:58 AM #

    Bruce,

    What a great status update. Your attitude certainly paved the way for your rapid physical recovery. It’s funny how the things we want least often are the triggers for the things we want most.

    • Bruce July 8, 2014 at 1:21 PM #

      Absolutely, Dan! You know a bit about that in your own life, I know! Thank you for all of your wisdom and encouragement!

  9. John Daly July 8, 2014 at 11:26 AM #

    Bruce… thanks for sharing your story. Very inspirational for me and I’m sure for so many other people. I am having my right knee replaced in a week and then also I am scheduled for back surgery in November. You have inspired me to share my story in order to help others. God Bless – take care of yourself and keep getting better.

    John

    • Bruce July 8, 2014 at 1:23 PM #

      Thanks, John! I hope the surgeries are successful and give you back the quality of life you desire! God bless you, too!

      • Lilian July 8, 2014 at 3:00 PM #

        So glad Bruce you are recovering so well and thank you for your wise reflections on your experience of prostrate cancer.May you continue to progress

  10. Mariel Hawley July 8, 2014 at 8:28 PM #

    Dear Bruce
    I can understand what has been happening in your life, my husband had a brain cancer surgery just two months ago and thanks God he is doing fine but I know there are hard days. Attitude will help and also your running goal! Remember the picture I send you that you said I looked so happy… I celebrated my husband’s surgery and radio and quimiotherapy swimming! Big hug for you and remember leave your fears in the garbage can!

  11. Wesley Wiley July 9, 2014 at 1:14 PM #

    Bruce, so glad to hear you’re recovering well! Your attitude is contagious!

  12. Brenda Smith-Lunam July 10, 2014 at 2:04 AM #

    I am more than pleased that you are doing so well in such a short time. Our Creator is truly our strength, even though in our weakened state during illness and all the side effects that come with it, we can forget and become totally entrenched in our circumstances. That too is normal, for we are human. But like the poet who wrote ‘Footprints’ said: That is when we are carried. God speed as you continue to heal. I have enjoyed your FB posts and other entries that you have written on Twitter where you have spoken about your ability to do your runs; further and further as time passes. It is amazing. Keep trusting in the One who does all things well! Brenda Smith-Lunam.

  13. Janet July 10, 2014 at 10:03 PM #

    Bruce, Wonderful reading about your journey so far. Inspirational and the plan 2017, I may see you there. I had surgeries in 2009, and have set many personal goals. Yet, I love how you have reached out to many with sharing your story, your a warm caring man. God Bless You.
    Speedy and a Full Recovery
    Janet

  14. Roopa July 22, 2014 at 12:36 PM #

    Hi Bruce, Bravo!! Its indeed lovely to know you emerged victorious!! Stay blessed always and All the best for your new book!! Take care buddy

  15. Jodi Sykes July 28, 2014 at 7:13 AM #

    Bruce, I am so happy for you that you have come out on the other side of your cancer journey! Your beautiful, kind, loving spirit is what has pulled you through. You are an inspiration and I wish you the best of luck in finishing your book!

    Sending you a BIG hug! ☺

    • Lilian Murphy August 7, 2014 at 1:47 PM #

      Hear,hear all the best Bruce

  16. Brenda Smith-Lunam August 6, 2014 at 11:34 PM #

    Hi Bruce: Your updates are truly a blessing to so many who are going through a hard time. Thank you for writing and letting us know how you are doing. We are so pleased that you have done well and give the credit to ‘the One who does all things well’. Blessings as you continue to heal.

  17. Jacalyn Belgrave April 21, 2015 at 3:41 AM #

    Morning Bruce, You are truly a life inspiration to all. You are coming through the storm with arms wide open and laughing all the way. It is a joy to hear of your triumphs, your healing process, and even your lowest moments that you tenderly share with us, your will to persist and not let real challenges get in the way. The saying is “Every man thinks his burden is the heaviest”. You have shown us that although this is one of the heaviest burdens a man/woman may ever have to face in life, you push on through pain and tears.

    I am so pleased you are walking with us day by day and you are still doing the things you love. You are an inspiration for me in many ways.

    Bless you and yours always and keep on doing what you are doing. Peace

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