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Discussion Starter #1
Well in two weeks I will be going to the Seattle Cancer Clinic for about 5 to 7 weeks for tests and 'Stem Cell Harvesting".



So the bikes are going to be put away and partially winterized and then around Thanksgiving I will finish those projects provided I'm strong enough.



I will be monitoring the site and lurking mostly but primarily I will be replanning my Washington to Minnesota trip which I plan to ride starting mid July or so.



I was able to ride about 6000 plus miles this summer and about 2500 was on dirt/gravel roads (all be it quite slow). The cancer has caused two of my vertebrae to completely collapse and sometime in the future I will have to have surgery for that too. But I'm amazed at how tough the body is since I have been riding with a broken back essentially. The Tens Unit I ride with helps manage the pain but does not clip the neurological signals so much that it does not impact balance or if I hit a bump I will know that too.



Anyway-to the rest of you all the best riding. I look forward to reading some good ride reports to fill my days.



All my treatments will be outpatient and I have housing close to the Cancer Clinic that provides shuttle service etc.



For those curious I have a non-curable cancer called Multiple Myeloma. Though not curable it is manageable and that's what I'm shooting for. I may have a stem cell transplant but I'm holding off at this time because the success rate is very poor and it only resets the disease (average remission is less than two years). But if the disease destroys my bone marrow then the stem cells can be used to regrow them and that's why I'm doing the harvest.



Anyway my best to all of you and I'm looking forward to some more riding nest season. I'm hoping to go down to Big Bend Texas in Jan or Feb or Mar depending on finances and my rehab. And then the big ride from WA to MN. Maybe I can meet some of you along the way. On the WA-MN ride I'm going to see if I can find donors for Blood Cancers. A few local firms are working with me and I'm hoping to raise monies for research and The American Cancer Society.



Mike



PS-I don't want to be writing a book called The Final Ride-Yet (Though I do like the Title
)
 

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well im sorry to hear about your difficulties. i will be praying for you. keep us updated on your progress we would like to know how you are doing.



shawn
 

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Take care Mike. Wishing you the smoothest of rides on what is likely to be a rough trail...... Gods speed.
Gerry



Edit: Mike, we had a couple of fella's on the forum some months ago. They were getting ready for a fund raising ride to buy motorcycles for Healthcare Workers in Africa. I understand they reached their goal of $4000 (+). As a 'sponsor' I found the process very easy and professional. Take a look

http://www.firstgiving.com/statements/about_us/howitworks.asp
 

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Mike



I hope that you`ll have a successful stay in the hospital and that you will regain enough of your health to ride again. My thoughts will be with you.



In South Africa we also have an bone marrow registry called "The Sunflower Fund"

They take a blood sample and keep the info on a list for if/when somebody needs it.



Both my wife and me are members.



Take care



Petrus
 

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Mike,



Good luck and take care. You have such a positive attitude in not the best of situations. I'm sure I'll be seeing your posts next year to this forum and your blog!



Kris
 

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I wish the best for you Mike. I'm sure I'll see you up in the Colockum next summer.
 

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Do you have a good support network here? Will someone be with you? Drop me a line if you need anything while in town, we would be happy to help!
 

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good luck bud
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Do you have a good support network here? Will someone be with you? Drop me a line if you need anything while in town, we would be happy to help!


Thank you for the kind offer.



I will have various family members staying with me 3 - 4 days every week and more during the critical phases. But after I get past the tests and treatments there will be periods where company might be nice.



Thank you for the offer PM me.



Mike
 

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Hi Mike ,

You've got the right attitude and sense of humour.

Riding a motorcycle helps too , Aye !!!

I'm in China right now , dealing a different kind of cancer .

It's going well .

I'll say a pray for you .

Ross
 

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You may be off the bike for a while, but perhaps you can keep up the blog. It is wonderful reading! Best wishes and God bless...
 

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Discussion Starter #13
This weekend is my parents 65 wedding anniversary. The whole family is going out for dinner.



After that its time to pack up and get ready to go to Seattle for the tests and stem cell harvesting.



Anyone know what kind and color of basket you need to pick stem cells? Is it like picking strawberries or mushrooms?




Oh well



Mike
 

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Mike. Wishing you the very bestest and a speedy recovery!! Hope you're still dream about Wood Buffalo...
 

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Good luck for your treatment !!!



PS:

Is there any motorycycle - game ???

So, you can enjoy virtual bike riding while you are out of real bike situation...
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Mike. Wishing you the very bestest and a speedy recovery!! Hope you're still dream about Wood Buffalo...




I guess you might call this my Bucket List of Rides:



Wood Buffalo is still something I want to do.



Matter of fact I would like to work a route across Canada from Prince Rupert to Nova Scotia trying to stay mostly on dirt roads and remaining as far north as possible.



But the two shorter term goals are Wood Buffalo and Queen Charlotte Islands (I guess now called Haida Gwaii sp?). And then the Kootenays seem to be calling-beautiful country up there and some nice roads -great glaciers and wonderful towns like Kaslo, etc. The Canada bug has bit me again.



And of course I want to reprise the WA to MN ride staying as true as possible to the originally planned route which is significantly different from the route I traveled due to poor weather conditions -but I probably will modify the first half a little to to mix things up a bit.



These rides also give me something to do between treatments-trip planning stuff.



Mike



PS My big concern after the tests and harvesting (and chemo to stimulate stem cell growth) is how much weight loss will occur? (Last time I lost 50 pounds and I had to bulk up again before these treatments - I don't want to get below 145 pounds) and how much muscle mass will I loose and then how long will it take to recover afterwards? Mentally, I'm ready and I have a plan and routine-got lots of books on motorcycle travel- I especially like finding road trips from the 1930s and earlier when I can find them and then stuff from post WWII.



Again thanks to all for the kind words and thoughts



mk
 

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Perhaps you'd like to be a "Trip Coordinator" for some of the rest of us who'd love to have your experience in planning adventures? You certainly have the wisdom and skills in that area.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Well I'm all packed up to go to Seattle for my tests and Stem Cell Harvest.



Tomorrow I hit the road and will be at the Cancer Center by 11:00. And checked into the SCCA house by 5pm, my new home for 5 to 7 weeks.



Yup, cancer sucks. Being a country kid in the big city will also be weird but because my immune system will be so low I won't be able to go out.



That's it for now.



Mike
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Perhaps you'd like to be a "Trip Coordinator" for some of the rest of us who'd love to have your experience in planning adventures? You certainly have the wisdom and skills in that area.






Thanks for the kind thought but right now I think I need to figure out my new reality and see how much spare energy I have. But anyone can PM me and I will gladly answer questions as time and energy allow.



I have been taken off all my "meds" for the last few weeks and the adjustment has been quite interesting.



Mike
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Well I'm moved into the SCCA House and the tests have started. One of the big nasty tests will be on Monday but that's the way it goes.



The SCCA House is pretty nice and the room has a view of the Space Needle and the Olympics provided weather cooperates.



Testing should take a few weeks and then some more nasty stuff, then chemo and stem cell harvesting.



Today is meeting day with the team doctors and nurses.








Mike
 
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