“The Diagnosis” and “The Final Chapter?”

Yesterday, a friend asked, How’s the book coming along? candidly, I believe it is coming along just fine. For me, it was an interesting transition from, when inspired, writing a 200 – 800 word blog post to writing 2,500 words for a chapter about a specific topic and, while it is certainly not easy, I am getting a better understanding of how writing this way best works for me.

It is such a blessing to be working with an incredibly talented author and editor, Ivey Harrington Beckman, who collaborates with me, encourages me and pushes me for more. To be able to essentially throw up on a word document and send those thoughts her way only to have them returned polished, edited and with structure is amazing.

Often I will read Ivey’s edited version of my thoughts with tears streaming down my face because I have lived the experiences, I have met the people mentioned and I personally know how what I am reading feels. The fact is, however, when it is all said and done…if the only person who ever reads my book is my son Jackson then this exercise will have been worth the effort and for that I am thankful.

Currently we are working on “The Diagnosis” and “The Final Chapter.” There are still several chapters to write, but Ivey has encouraged me to draft my thoughts on these two topics. She asked, if you only had 20 minutes remaining what would you want to share with a friend?

Since my diagnosis, 5 years ago, I have seen numerous friends move to the front of the line. These are friends who were wrestling with cancer and others, outside of this echo system, who death visited their homes unexpectedly.

There have been auto accidents, aneurisms and unexpected heart attacks and as I ponder this I realize the diagnosis was a gift. Those of us who have been given this gift know, we are not going to be here forever. We’ve grown to understand – yesterday is a memory, tomorrow is not promised so truly all we really have is today. So, if this is true, why invest even a minute in things that don’t matter?

For me today holds round 67 of chemotherapy and I am excited to see my friends at Vanderbilt who draw my blood for labs, the doctors in the hallway and my fellow patients. There is certain to be a few people I will be able to encourage along the way and I am excited to discover who they are.

None of us know the hour when we will have the privilege of standing before Jesus. None of us know when we will take our last breath so allow me to encourage you to make the most of what you have been given, today, and live it to the fullest.

That’s exactly what I intend to do. Will you join me?


“Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

Matthew 6:34