No More Treatment Options

Today is Wednesday, November 24th, and the always feared PET scans, of which I had again this morning, have just resulted in some crushing news.  My cancer, Clear Cell Sarcoma, has now spread throughout my entire right leg, and although not yet visible on my scans, it has likely spread to my abdominal organs.  the cancer can no longer be controlled by surgery, radiation, or chemo-therapy; my treatment options have run out! My doctors speculate that as of today I have about 2 months before my leg becomes too sore and swollen to use.  The pain will be treated with nerve blocks until this ultimately becomes fatal.  I am not at all surprised to be here in this position today.  I’ve been able to feel bumps under my skin where they shouldn’t be and I’ve been preparing myself for this emotionally.  However, up till now I’ve been able to tell myself that this sucks, but it’s in the future.   From here forward, each day my condition will be worse than the previous.

To turn this devastating news into something more positive, I’ve been focusing on the unique opportunities that this situation would allow.  Some of my favorite inspirations have always been “On the Road” by Jack Kerouak (great gift Thomas – Thank You!), and the films “Into the Wild”, and “Easy Rider” (great gift Ryan & Makiko – Thank You!)  The classic idea of the freedom of the road.  A while back, I decided that when this day comes, I will no longer be” fit for duty” at work and submit for full disability.  I will use as much of my remaining time as possible to take a cross country road trip; no defined plans or agenda.  This has really given me a lot of adventure to look forward to!

My super supportive parents have decided to join Shannon and I on the trip.  Shannon, my mother, and father have all taken a leave of absence from their work with little notice and their employers are extremely supportive.  Shannon would tell me that this all stems back to “Self Determination Theory.”

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About bhoefen

Going on a road trip.
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8 Responses to No More Treatment Options

  1. Shan says:

    To take from “Into the Wild”… you can be Bretly Superharley and I’ll be Shannie Super-cross country.

    “The freedom and simple beauty is too good to pass up”…so let’s hit the road and ride! Just try and keep up with the Volvo on the FatBob.

  2. Ron Bronakoski says:

    Bret, if there is anything at all that you need, be it help around the house, transportation, anything! Please let me know.

  3. Sue DeVito says:

    Bret,
    Live, Laugh and Love. Wishing you the most memorable and wonderful roadtrip anyone could ask for. You deserve nothing less!
    Your smiling face will be missed around here – but we will be smiling knowing you are living it up!
    God Bless,
    Sue

  4. Julee says:

    Hey Brettster, Shan, Bets, Jim, Ryan, Aaron! Been thinking about you all everyday… wanted to send you a little note but didn’t know quite what to say..imagine that..me speechless Hahaha! I love hearing about your wonderful adventure. Thank you for sharing your journey.
    Bret- thanks for a blast from the past…the picture of you four boys skipping into the woods was one of my favorite pictures your mom use to have in her room.
    Shannon- sending you a BIG hug…your warm genuine smile and the twinkle in your eye says it all.
    Bets- keep taking the pictures. I hope to see a beautiful book, like the one you made from your Italy trip.
    Jim- I am seeing a different side of you…never saw the wild side…you in chaps riding a bike YAHOO.
    Ryan- yippee for you, a big mac… I guess there is a little wild side to you too! Aaron- you are just the “spirit” this adventure needs.
    As you ease on down the road…
    May the sun bring you a new energy by day. May the moon softly restore you by night. May the rain wash away your worries.
    May the breeze blow new strength into your being.
    May you walk gently through the world and know its beauty all the days of your life.(an Apache prayer that is suppose to bring you a sense of deep peace and comfort) xxxooo All my love and prayers –
    Mrs. Acomb – since you boys still have a hard time calling me Julee 🙂

  5. Jessica Hamilton says:

    I just finished reading your blog of your travels thus far. I have to say that you are an amazing individual and very courageous. Your attitude towards the unfortunate situation you have been put in is very admirable! Good luck Bret in your travels and enjoy each and every moment…

  6. Jenn Ng'andu says:

    Wonderment. That is the feeling that I have. Bret, I admire your courageousness in an extremely tough fight. I am glad that you are taking the time to enjoy the road and living your life with your family. Thank you for sharing this journey with us.

  7. Tabitha Nisbet-Morris says:

    Bret, I think what you are doing is amazing. You have a great approach to this situation you have found yourself in. You are an inspiration to us all. Your in my thoughts and prayers 🙂

  8. Tabitha Nisbet-Morris says:

    Bret, I am just amazed at your courage. You have an awesome approach to this challenging situation you have found yourself in. Thank you for sharing your strength and bravery with us. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

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