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"100 Years"

I'm 15 for a moment
Caught in between 10 and 20
And I'm just dreaming
Counting the ways to where you are

I'm 22 for a moment
She feels better than ever
And we're on fire
Making our way back from Mars

15 there's still time for you
Time to buy and time to lose
15 there's never a wish better than this
When you only got 100 years to live

I'm 33 for a moment
Still the man but you see I'm a they
A kid on the way
A family on my mind

I'm 45 for a moment
The sea is high
And I'm heading into a crisis
Chasing the years of my life

15 there's still time for you
Time to buy time to lose yourself
Within a morning star
15 I'm all right with you
15 there's never a wish better than this
When you only got 100 years to live

Half time goes by
Suddenly you’re wise
Another blink of an eye
67 is gone
The sun is getting high
We're moving on

I'm 99 for a moment
Dying for just another moment
And I'm just dreaming
Counting the ways to where you are

15 there's still time for you
22 I feel her too
33 you’re on your way
Every day's a new day

15 there's still time for you
Time to buy and time to choose
Hey 15 there's never a wish better than this
When you only got 100 years to live

Sung By: Five For Fighting

In 1999 Brian was diagnosed with Malignant Melanoma of the Conjunctiva in his left eye, he was 16 years old at this time.  The cancer was a Stage T-3. After removal of the tumor and re-constructive surgery on his eye and the conjunctiva region, he was clear.  He was extremely lucky for he suffered no visual interference or loss and no return of the cancer. At that time, he did not have to endure radiation or chemo therapy.

On October 5, 2008, Brian had a tumor approximately the size of a golf ball, emerge on his left shoulder.  The tumor was located UNDER the skin but was causing him no pain or irritation. However, he began having soreness to his left elbow and tingling in his fingers. He and his wife, Patty went to see a surgeon who promptly removed the tumor and after insistence from Brian, sent the tissue to Pathology for examination. 

On October 10, 2008, Brian returned to his doctor to have the stitches removed from the site of the previous surgery and was informed at that time that he had Malignant Cancer however, the tumor was not the origin of the disease, and that it was somewhere else in his body.  The doctor sent Brian for an immediate full body scan in an attempt to locate the origin of the cancer and other possible tumors that may exist.  Brian and Patty were advised the results of the scan would be back in a couple of days and he would notify them upon return of those results. This was a Friday. Later that evening while Brian, Patty and the kids were preparing to have dinner, the Doctor appeared at their front door and said he urgently needed to speak to Brian regarding the results of his scan.  Brian was told he had Stage 4 Metastatic Melanoma and it has spread to his brain, one lung as well as his pelvic region.  The brain tumors are inoperable.  His doctor said he would attempt to get Brian into a clinical trial at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee since the cancer was so advanced and since Brian had no medical insurance.  His words to Brian before leaving, “you need to live your life now-because you’re dying.”

On October 20, 2008, we traveled to Vanderbilt University and spoke with several Oncology Specialists and were assured that Brian qualified for a special clinical trial that had just opened the previous Wednesday.  All necessary paperwork was completed, Brian’s medical history was taken, he was given a physical and then the dreaded prognosis- “With or without treatment, he has six months to live.”

Brian was the perfect candidate for the clinical trial because he was NOT symptomatic and had not received any treatment of any type to date for this cancer. After we departed Vanderbilt, Brian didn’t hear anything more from them regarding this “clinical trial” that may have very well been essential in helping him, possibly even saving his life.  All hope we placed in them was lost because they no longer communicated with us.

On October 28, 2008, Brian woke from sleep vomiting and complaining that his head was “exploding” and had to be rushed to the emergency room.  Upon scanning, it was determined that the brain tumors were swollen and he had to be placed on steroid therapy to reduce swelling and also a pain reliever. It was also determined at this time, he was considered “symptomatic”.

On October 31, 2008, we were advised that Brian needed to remain on the steroids due to edema around the tumors and at this time, he was not being considered for the clinical trial.  He was to begin radiation therapy and stay on steroids for now.

On December 4, 2008, Brian had his final radiation treatment and was doing really well.  He was experiencing some “puffy” weight gain and his face was swollen, because the radiation also caused the areas being radiated to swell as well.  He was being cut back on his steroids in preparation for his chemo which begins Monday, January 5, 2009.

On Friday, December 5, 2008, after returning home from a walk with his daughter Alyssa, he removed his knit cap and noticed a large amount of hair loss.  He proceeded to cut the rest of hair, since losing so much of it. He commented that at least he had it all through the radiation and that he was going to “control” the rest of the hair loss.

Brian is so positive and strong, and simply refuses to give in or give up. He’s convinced that he’s beat this disease once before, he can do it again!!  He’s mentally and physically strong, built like a line backer and has a zest for life that cannot be compromised.  He has two beautiful children and a third on the way, and says he will be here to see his children marry and hold his own grandchildren one day!! 

As mother’s go, there are no words to say to a mother, to comfort her when the news is, “your child is dying”, no matter the age of the child.  I’ve known parents of babies and small children who never got the chance to see their child leave high school, drive a car, marry, have children of their own, and the list just goes on.  If I were to lose one of my sons at this point in my life, I wouldn’t know what to do, wouldn’t remember how to breathe, but I would remember that I had them and loved them and the memories they created in my life would stay with me for all eternity.  I could always ask for more, we all could, but I did only borrow them from God and I’m just so thankful that he’s given me so much of them for this time, our time.  All that I have with my sons, I’ll take with me when I go, for it is they who have left the impressions on my soul. I’ll love them always.

Thank you Sharon, my earthbound Angel. God Bless you and yours.

Blessings of Love,
Elaine

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