Friday, January 9, 2009

Pneumonia puts courageous Swayze in hospital; for all cancer victims, there is time to live, die

Actor Patrick Swayze, who in recent days has spoken out courageously about his cancer and his fighting spirit, has contracted pneumonia and checked himself into the hospital for observation.

Fighting pancreatic cancer, Swayze has survived and started a new TV series slated to debut next Thursday on A&E. But chemo reduces the ability of the body to fight infections. I take chemo daily and get the big dose by IV each month. So the body can only take so much. Mine is pretty beat up from three-plus years of chemo and the diabetes it has induced.

Swayze has made it clear that he is a fighter. But he also knows that all fights come to an end. And that's not all bad. Mine may, too.

And I am more than ready to go, as quickly as possible. Life on this Earth for me is just not that much fun anymore, even though I greatly enjoy doing good for people. It has just become too difficult to do good for myself, and the emptiness can be overwhelming, particularly in crowds of happy people.

While I do not look forward to the reality of dying alone without family, I do look forward to seeing family and especially my mother in heaven ... once I get there.

Hoepfully, Swayze pneumonia is just a blip in his recovery. But cancer is a wily foe. It strikes back unexpectedly and with such force that nearly all of its victims succumb.

I don't mind that fact anymore. I'm grateful to have leukemia, which is a most effective and swift killer.

I pray that Swayze has made his peace with dying, too. There is a time to fight and a time to accept. Either way, God is with us. And that's the best any of us can hope for.

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