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View Full Version : Chemo and ukulele to treat cancer!



Helms
03-27-2014, 11:25 PM
Hey everyone!

In early february I was diagnosed with a rare form of testicular cancer that had spread to several organs.
Luckily it is very treatable and bloodresults has shown great progress!
Hopefully in a few months I'll be cancer free!

Obviously it has been some very rough last couple of months, with a lot of struggle to keep head overwater during the hard chemo treatments.

Just a few days ago, I just got back to the ukulele for the first time since I was diagnosed, and it was a thrill like never before!
It really put a long-lasting smile on my face and I can't wait to get back playing again!
The ukulele was a real happy-boost - but more then that. It made me forget everything for a little while and just filled the room with those sweet tunes :)
My advice to anyone who's sick or to anyone who knows someone's sick: Give them a ukulele and let them experience what a joy it is! :)

gat
03-28-2014, 12:20 AM
Helms,Good luck with your treatment ,keep on plucking, best wishes from the U.K.
Graham

mm stan
03-28-2014, 12:36 AM
Aloha helms....Just said a prayer for you for a speedy recovery...happy strummings..

ukantor
03-28-2014, 02:42 AM
65292Hi Helms, and congratulations on the good results from your treatment. I can relate to your situation as I was diagnosed with prostate cancer nine years ago. I suspect your treatment has been harder than the radiotherapy and hormones I had to endure, but I too found great solace in playing the uke. There can't be many folk who've been photographed playing next to the Xray treatment machine.

No, I wasn't playing, "Please Don't Talk About Me When I'm Gone"! I think it was "Ain't She Sweet".

Keep on keeping on. You'll get there!

dkcrown
03-28-2014, 03:11 AM
Best off luck to you Helms moving forward and glad that you are getting better.

Again, the power of this little instrument cannot be overstated. As Stan says, "Keep on strumming!"

Helms
03-28-2014, 03:26 AM
Thanks a lot everyone! Means a lot! :)

Excellent picture ukantor! I have yet to bring my ukulele to the hospital, although the nurses have been asking for it :)
I sure neither of our treatments has been very pleasant! I hope you're doing well today, 9 years later.

JamieWG
03-28-2014, 04:31 AM
I wish you all the best for a speedy recovery. It is indeed amazing how such a small and inexpensive instrument can make us feel so much better when life throws its curve balls! Happy strumming. :)

PhilUSAFRet
03-28-2014, 04:39 AM
Prayers for a full recovery on the way. Keep on strumming! :music:

Hammond
03-28-2014, 05:08 AM
Helms I wish you recover fully, speedy, and happily. I can feel the positive energy from your words, keep strumming :)

vanflynn
03-28-2014, 05:24 AM
Best wishes and prayers for a quick recovery. The ukulele has magical healing powers to make sure to play it every day!

Olarte
05-13-2014, 09:28 AM
How are you doing Helms? I hope strumming the Ukulele is helping a lot.

I just got diagnosed myself with prostrate cancer, and am meeting with my doc tomorrow about the treatment plan.

It's those like you who have battled this before that give me strength and Hope.

Aloha,
Ivan

bborzell
05-13-2014, 12:02 PM
How are you doing Helms? I hope strumming the Ukulele is helping a lot.

I just got diagnosed myself with prostrate cancer, and am meeting with my doc tomorrow about the treatment plan.

It's those like you who have battled this before that give me strength and Hope.

Aloha,
Ivan

I have an old friend who is a Clinical Psychologist who does weekly groups for men who have recently been diagnosed with prostate cancer at the local hospital. He decided to volunteer nearly 10 years after being diagnosed with an advanced case himself. He is doing well with ongoing treatment. Had he not been diagnosed when he was, he would not be around today.

There is never a good time to get prostate cancer, but some times are better than others. The advances in prostate cancer treatment over the last decade have been pretty dramatic. I am 22 years past a cancer diagnosis myself and, if there is one thing I can suggest for you, it would be to concentrate on making all aspects of your life as normal as possible as you work through this event.

I had surgery and a fairly long chemo regimen and what helped immensely was to continue exercising and interacting normally with folks around me. Friends who have not had the experience of interacting with someone they know who is being treated for cancer might be hesitant in interacting initially because they don't know what to say. I suggest you taking the initiative to talk and explain what is going on and getting the initial discomfort behind both of you. Some folks begin to live their lives as a "cancer patient" and can't think of anything else to talk about. I suggest you work to avoid that trap by, again, making your live as normal as possible.

In my view, the best way to get through chemo or radiation therapy is to eat right, get strong and stay strong. If you regularly exercise now, continue in consultation with your Doctor. If you have not been exercising up to this point, consider starting and ensuring that your diet is a healthy one. Some folks are affected by adverse treatment symptoms more than others, but the literature (as well as my experience) appears to suggest that eating well and staying strong during treatment is much better, both physically as well as psychologically. And, not a bad idea to continue after treatment is concluded.:)

Oh, and keep playing that uke.

Olarte
05-13-2014, 12:15 PM
Thank you so much for all the information and advice.... Lots of good stuff here....

I was running up to November and that's one of the things I will need to get back to. I feel good so far, although I don't know how that will change with radiation etc... But I plan to slay this dragon one day at a time and yes with a Uke in my hand.


Thanks.
Ivan


I have an old friend who is a Clinical Psychologist who does weekly groups for men who have recently been diagnosed with prostate cancer at the local hospital. He decided to volunteer nearly 10 years after being diagnosed with an advanced case himself. He is doing well with ongoing treatment. Had he not been diagnosed when he was, he would not be around today.

There is never a good time to get prostate cancer, but some times are better than others. The advances in prostate cancer treatment over the last decade have been pretty dramatic. I am 22 years past a cancer diagnosis myself and, if there is one thing I can suggest for you, it would be to concentrate on making all aspects of your life as normal as possible as you work through this event.

I had surgery and a fairly long chemo regimen and what helped immensely was to continue exercising and interacting normally with folks around me. Friends who have not had the experience of interacting with someone they know who is being treated for cancer might be hesitant in interacting initially because they don't know what to say. I suggest you taking the initiative to talk and explain what is going on and getting the initial discomfort behind both of you. Some folks begin to live their lives as a "cancer patient" and can't think of anything else to talk about. I suggest you work to avoid that trap by, again, making your live as normal as possible.

In my view, the best way to get through chemo or radiation therapy is to eat right, get strong and stay strong. If you regularly exercise now, continue in consultation with your Doctor. If you have not been exercising up to this point, consider starting and ensuring that your diet is a healthy one. Some folks are affected by adverse treatment symptoms more than others, but the literature (as well as my experience) appears to suggest that eating well and staying strong during treatment is much better, both physically as well as psychologically. And, not a bad idea to continue after treatment is concluded.:)

Oh, and keep playing that uke.

Ukuleleblues
05-13-2014, 01:46 PM
I herniated two discs and when they did the MRI they found issues with my bladder and kidneys. For the last month I've been undergoing tests to figure out what the issue is while being kept in a lot of physical discomfort. I was able to keep some degree of sanity by playing my ukes and rearranging and learning a new song. I brought a four uke uke holder by the couch and loaded it with a tenor, Bari, C tuned soprano and D tuned concert. Got some chord books and paper within reach on the coffee table and tried to get my mind off the problems. It has helped lessen the feeling of despair for sure.

I also used UU to help me get my mind off things,. So if you are sick of my recent barrage of posts, wish me well so I don't sit here very much longer and check UU every 1/2 hour. I get more tests Friday, wish me luck. From me, the best of luck to all those having health issues. Hang in there!

ukantor
05-13-2014, 08:37 PM
When I was diagnosed with prostate cancer, about eleven years ago, I was forced to consider my own mortality. I realised that the answer to the question, "Am I going to die?" is, "Yes, of course you are!" However, nobody can tell you when, or how, unless they are holding a gun to your head and intend to pull the trigger.

Keep breathing in and out, and try to enjoy each day. Life is a terminal condition.