Monday, September 28, 2009

5 Reasons Why Kicking Cancer will be easier than Kicking for Michigan

People kicking cancer get to join a "battle", "fight" their disease and become "warriors".
Kickers are the ones who you hope you will never have to rely on and who bring up the team GPA.

People kicking cancer shave their heads.
Kickers at Michigan get their heads shaved against their will.

People kicking cancer must do urine collection in a plastic jug.
On the sidelines of the Purdue game I had to use... never mind. Too many details for 99% of our readers.

People kicking cancer often have to take steroids.
Kickers at Michigan only get access to chicken steroids.

People kicking cancer have fans show up to support them from everywhere.
(Some) kickers at Michigan get boo-ed at the Big House in front of a home crowd. (Yes, this happened at least once to me...and I am sure there are a few folks who still throw up on impulse when they see the #34 or hear the the name Brabbs.)

Monday, September 14, 2009

...and welcome, also, MGoBlog readers.

We woke up this morning to an email from my BFF asking if we had seen this post on MGoBlog. We hadn't... and are amazed at how quickly information travels these days. Thanks, everyone, for your kind words of support. If you're coming here for the first time, you can go through the archives to follow along. There's also a quick timeline recap at the top of the right side menu. If you want to know more about Multiple Myeloma, go here and click through, or for a more concise explanation go here.

We're officially on vacation but are still checking in here periodically in light of being outed over the weekend. Phil is fishing, boogie-boarding and throwing footballs on the beach with our kids. We feel a million miles away from cancer right now, and are just focusing on building up our strength for the next phase of facing this disease. We are strong, joyful and grateful for what we have.

To everyone who has left a comment, and especially those of you touched by cancer in some way, our hearts go out to you and we draw strength from your stories. As Phil mentioned in an earlier post we are so sorry to be connected in this way but so thankful to be able to share our lives with you. 

Love to all. 

You can also email Phil: pbrabbs at hotmail dot com
Follow him on Twitter:

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Welcome, Midland Daily News readers.

What a great way to start our two week hiatus to Emerald Isle, NC prior to starting chemo treatment... with a magnificent win in the Big House by the Big Blue! I must admit that I was a little upset that while traveling through both Ohio and West Virginia there were little to no air waves carrying the Michigan game, but I guess that is to be expected.

Today my hometown news posted my story in the Sunday paper roughly 7 years after the article on the Washington kick. I have always appreciated the journalist who covered the story and this interview was delightful as I got to hear more of his life story, all of which was very encouraging to me.

As I hang low for the next two weeks, I am glad to see the news go public. For those who know me, fame and recognition are the last two things I seek out or even desire. I think what I do desire is for people to know that there is pain and suffering going on in this world and we need to continue to ask why and what can I do? I think seeking the perfect cocktail of chemo drugs to cure this disease in me is a wonderful thing, but why does a young man in his 20's stumble across such a disease as Multiple Myeloma?

So believe me, after we are done kicking this disease straight through the uprights there will be much celebration, but for me, the game will not be over, it will just have begun.

Addendum by Cassie: Phil has done a great job of taking over this blog for the last couple of weeks since I've been trying to get everything lined up for our vacation and for treatment. I just want to also welcome readers of the Midland Daily News and encourage you to leave a comment if you are coming here for the first time. Even if you're not sure what to say, a simple Hello goes a long way... we gain so much encouragement just knowing you're out there.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

MM Bringing Spartans, Wolverines and even Buckeyes together...

Today I was blessed with the opportunity to connect with JM up at MSU. JM's husband, SM, was diagnosed with MM at the age of 25! They have an amazing story which has provided me with so much strength and encouragement ever since I learned of them through someone on my medical team. JM has been awesome at reaching out to me to get the live updates on how both Cassie and I are doing. So today we met in person for the first time and it was so great. As I was driving back to Ann Arbor I started to think how MM has brought so many people into my life that I hardly know, but that I am so thankful for.

Oddly enough, in my email inbox when I got home there was a message from a friend who had another buddy who was recently diagnosed with MM. This fellow lives down in Columbus, OH of all places and I can honestly say that I know what he is going through right now given that my diagnosis is still fresh in my mind. We may be in different life stages, but the whole uncertainty aspect knows no age, gender, or college football affiliation!

I think one thing cancer patients and their families do best is help absorb each other's worries and provide hope that is very hard and probably awkward for those who haven't been touched by cancer to offer up. So the web of relationships caused by my MM diagnosis continues to expand, and for this I am saddened, but also thankful. Thankful, because I know that with each diagnosis there will be more pain and anxiety, but with that there will be a greater measure of hope to be expressed and shared by all.

We will kick this thing...together.

-CancerKicker #34

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Who signs up for a 10k before cancer treatment...?!?!

...I do. I feel like I have been sitting back and not taking on the disease beyond eating a good diet thanks to a wonderful bride who puts up with my complaining. I am by far in the worst shape of my life since quitting athletics a few years back

So I signed up for a 10k just so I could kick things into high gear right before we start treatment in October. I am running almost every day now and I can hardly finish a 5k. If I could run 8 minute miles for 6.2 miles I will feel like I have pushed my body to the max before the chemicals start to sink in. 

Today was my first day running the course....well half of it. There's a 5k and 10k run that both finish in the Big House. The 10k is actually just the 5k course times two

If any of you folks who mysteriously follow our blog and are to wimpy to let us know want to run with me, I am game.  Or if you just want to give us a shout out to let us know you are watching...that would mean a lot too.