This is not about cancer but it is about other health issues old men have.
On last Friday, August 22, I was fishing with a friend in the Colorado mountains and had severe abdominal pain. Went to the Emergency Room in Frisco. I had been unable to urinate much for more than a day. They catheretized me and told me to see my regular doctor on Monday to have the catheter removed. They thought that it was an infection and gave me antibiotics.
On Monday, I saw my doc and he removed the catheter and tested that I could urinate. All seemed well. But, Tuesday morning I was again in a hospital ER in the worst pain I’ve ever had (hard to believe given my history). Again my bladder was full and I couldn’t urinate. Again, a catheter was inserted and I was told I had to keep it in until I talk to my urologist. By late afternoon I had talked to urologist and was told that it my prostate. I have had BPH (Benign Prostate Hyperplasia) better known as an enlarged prostate for over 20 years. Most men have it at least mildly by the time they are 80. I’m just lucky, I guess. It has been treated with drugs successfully… No longer. I have run out of drug options. My options are either surgery or wear a catheter for the rest of my life. A catheter is uncomfortable at times (perhaps more for men than women). I’m told you never really get used to it. There can be negative effects from surgery (no surprise there).
I will go for surgery. It will not happen until at least mid-September because of doctor’s schedule and I am not dying or in extreme pain for now.
Unfortunately, I am forced to cancel next week’s fishing and camping with best friends in Wyoming. It’s too isolated and too rough for me with this problem. I have told the doctor that I want to be healed enough to go on a planned trip to Scotland in October to see grandson, son and daughter-in-law.
Buddhists talk a lot about impermanence. All of existence will change and is always changing. Suffering is not just pain. Suffering is clinging or attachment to things that will change and will cause us pain. None of us can avoid pain. We can avoid suffering by not clinging to the conditions of existence that will/must go away. My body is teaching impermanence. Aging is an obvious instance of impermanence. Can I minimize the mental/emotional suffering of this? Maybe I will be able to tell you in the future.
Namaste (I bow to the divine in you),