Greg Nelson: Staring Down Death

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kopower
8/29/12 10:08:33AM
He found out running up a hill in Thailand. That is where it started. That is where Greg Nelson discovered he was not invincible, that he was not Superman. The clue was not particularly noticeable. Just a little shortness of breath, Nelson kept telling himself. Back down and up again. He would run through it. However, what was unfolding would eventually change his life forever, though he did not know it then.

If only he could catch his breath.

Nelson was only 37 at the time. His mindset had only one directive when dealing with pain and fatigue, and that was to push back, not to question it. How could he know what was coursing through him? How could he know one day he would tire by just chewing cereal? Or struggle lifting a spoon to his mouth? Or need a year to relearn how to walk again? Or be reminded to breathe? How could he fathom those lonely nights when it was too painful to move a finger, staring at white hospital walls wondering whether or not he would live to see his children become adults?

Nelson was once one of those subjects lying in a bed surrounded by white coats and clipboards, scribbling notes and pondering why he was still living after all he had endured. He defied something that had its way with the human body, a rare form of nerve cancer called neurolymphomatosis. He had also already beaten non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Link
warglory
8/29/12 8:42:26PM
Nerve cancer? That sounds about the absolute worst thing ever.
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