Sunday, November 3, 2019

The Prostate Chronicles - A Medical Memoir: Detours and Decisions following my Prostate Cancer Diagnosis by Bob Tierno

Today I bring my readers a very funny book, but serious at the same time. How many of you know someone who died from cancer or has cancer? For me, this topic hits home as my brother died from prostate cancer, my mother has stage IV lung cancer, my husband had cancer and I have had cancer. Hold the horses! This all sounds depressing, doesn't it? I am here to tell you that when a doctor tells you or a loved one they have cancer, you go numb and don't hear a thing they tell you. And, the only thing you think is that you have been given a death sentence. I am going to quote my mother, "Cancer doesn't have to mean a death sentence."

I think she knows what she is talking about, she beat lung cancer twice and is now fighting it again. One of her best techniques is through humor and finding joy in her life. Hearing her and how she deals with things, gives me encouragement and that is why I think today's book,  The Prostate Chronicles - A Medical Memoir: Detours and Decisions following my Prostate Cancer Diagnosis by Bob Tiernois so fabulous. It is not a downer type of book as Bob intertwines his style of humor. This book is a must-read.


“I know not all that may be coming, but be it will, I’ll go laughing.” Herman Melville, Moby Dick

Frankly, most books on prostate cancer like this are boring and predictable, with an over-emphasis on the medical aspect. This book is irreverent and, therefore different. It sheds light on my journey and speaks to how relationships matter. Men generally don’t like to talk about their prostate because of its impact on their ego (sex life) and quality of life (incontinence). Life as they knew it is “over,” not acknowledging that their life already sucked thanks to their prostate as in always asking for an aisle seat near the restroom. As in always looking for the nearest bathroom at events, and of course, not enjoying that favorite cup of joe if a toilet was more than an hour away. You do have several options when diagnosed with prostate cancer, but frankly, they all suck.

Despite numerous downside implications, there is the outcome that you live to see another five, fifteen or twenty years. Having that definitive end-of-life conversation with my urologist was sobering. Whether you are a man or a significant other, prostate cancer is steady part of our health lexicon today. If you’re lucky enough to live to eighty, you’ll most likely encounter this disease.
I think of prostate cancer as a detour in my life in my late 60s, something I would not have asked for by any means. If you happen to have prostate cancer, you’re not totally, FUBAR, (Fouled Up Beyond All Repair). Okay, maybe a just little bit. At least you won’t ever again have to hear your urologist say “Bend over here it comes again!”

Ella Wheeler said in her famous poem Solitude, “Laugh and the whole world laughs with you. Weep, and you weep alone.”

Prostate cancer sucks, but you stand a better chance of coping if you have humor on your side. I’m choosing to take a humorous approach because it’s freaking healthy and because I can and that is what you will find in this book. My life has been a series of exciting eras, all of them fueled by my love of experiencing new challenges. I’m knowledgeable about many things, which I can now add prostate cancer and robotic surgery. Not my first choice, but it does make the list of my expertise longer.