Living with Terminal Cancer

If you’ve read the short bios on my Facebook page or my blog, you already know this information, but I’ll share it with those of you who may not know yet. On Thanksgiving Day 2018, I was rushed to the hospital with severe pain in my abdomen.

It turned out I had two forms of endometrial cancer; one somewhat sluggish and passive and the other one super-aggressive. The aggressive one had formed a tumor the size of a grapefruit (which I called “Wilson” after the soccer ball in the movie “Castaway” with Tom Hanks) in my abdomen which is what was causing the pain I was feeling. You can see a video of the CAT scan that was done HERE.

Wilson was removed in mid-December 2018, but not before he took the opportunity to rupture and spew cancer cells throughout my abdomen (which I now call “The Sons of Wilson”). There’s no way to tell where the cells will attach themselves to next, and the prognosis is not a good one.

Bottom line, I may only have a few years left to live.

2021-2022 Update:

After the surgery to remove Wilson, for over a year, I’d been experiencing increasing pain in my lower left abdomen and hip: white-hot electrical pain in my abdomen, groin and thigh that made walking very difficult. Physical therapy did nothing to alleviate it, and pain meds sometimes didn’t touch it. The Sons of Wilson had emerged: a large lesion and a smaller one behind it. Great.

On Friday, October 8, 2021 I had the surgery to remove Wilson Jr. But the tumor was in hiding so very little was done to extricate it. A CT scan afterwards showed the tumor was still there, was larger, and had a friend with it.

After healing from the 2021 surgery, I had another surgery in January of 2022 to get the tumors out. The doctors couldn’t get to them laparoscopically, so they opened my abdomen up to get to the tumors. I ended up with a scar that ran from the middle of my abdomen, past my navel and down to my pubic bone. Yikes! The pain was like nothing I’d ever experienced before. It took a good 6 weeks to recover from it. Don’t think I’ll opt for that option again.

In August of 2022, I had an MRI that showed there was another 1 inch tumor in the same place as the previous ones. Sigh. Wilson is one tough bastard. So, the cancer lingers still, and will eventually take me out, I’m sure.

Rather than spending my remaining time having chemo/radiation treatments which will make me miserable and not guarantee me any level of success, I’ve decided to forego all treatment and spend my final years doing what I love: nature walks, photography, being with my dog, and sharing my naturalist knowledge with others.

So, there you have it in a nutshell. Hugs are always welcome; sad faces are not.

If you’re so inclined, and want to donate funds to help me out with medical bills, gasoline, food, medications or health insurance expenses you can also send donations through my PayPal account at: Thanks bunchly!

Travels of a Certified California Naturalist

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