Some Things Are Too Important Not To Try
When I was first diagnosed with prostate cancer in September of 2013 I was faced with the most important decision of my life.
On the one hand, I could have opted for surgery (a radical prostatectomy), the standard of care recommended by my first two urologists. I was fully aware of the potential risks of this course of treatment: erectile dysfunction and urinary incontinence, with no guarantee that the cancer would not return.
The other choice, the alternative protocol of lifestyle interventions, would spare my sexual function but the risk was terrifying: there was a chance the cancer could metastasize to my lymph nodes and then my bones, after which surgery would no longer be possible. This was the course that my father's illness took, and it eventually took his life in June of 2015.
As you already know (you can read my story here) I chose the alternative route, under the medical supervision of Dr. Geovanni Espinosa, the Director of Integrative Urology at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City. Though I was anxious about living with cancer growing inside my body I had confidence in Dr. Geo's approach, which is based on hard science and the pioneering clinical trials of medical practitioners like Dr. Dean Ornish. As a relatively young and healthy man of 50 I wasn't ready to spend the rest of my life impotent or wearing a diaper. Despite my fear, I knew this was too important not to try.
Launching the Health Warrior Way is also too important not to try. I've had a pretty good 25+ year run as a business technologist, helping companies of all different sizes and in different industries figure out how to leverage technology to address complex business issues. I created a professional niche for myself, despite the lack of any formal business or technology education, and have been able to provide for all of family's needs and many of their wants. And though everything I've learned during my first career will support the growth of my second (HWW) career I am essentially starting over in a completely new role and industry. I'm a 54 year old rookie.
This is scary, even though I know that this is the right thing for me to be doing, and the right time for me to be doing it. I'm transitioning from the only profession I've ever known, and I'm willingly returning myself to novice status.
But: it's too important not to try. I feel compelled to share my story with as many people as possible, to hopefully inspire them to seize control of their health and well-being. This has become my Purpose, and a purpose is not merely a job. A purpose can't be measured by the numbers on a paycheck. It's a calling, an obsession; it's something you can't not do.
It's humbling to think that I needed to wait 50 years -- half a century -- to find my calling. But it couldn't have happened any other way. I needed to go through what I went through, all of it -- the illness, the fear, the confusion, the journey back to optimal health -- in order to discover my calling. This has been a journey not of my choosing or my desire; somehow, it chose me and I've just been along for the ride.
And what about you? Have you encountered something you couldn't not do? Something for which you would risk anything and everything, including the scorn of people who believe they know what's best for you? Something that you would regret not trying, not taking a chance on, for the rest of your life?