Paul's Heart

Life As A Dad, And A Survivor

If My Survivorship Will Mean Anything… Part 4

Please go to “Paul’s Heart” on Facebook so that you can view the actual video recordings with Bill Shirkey.  I was not able to upload them on this page.  The female voice you hear in the background is Michael’s mother who accompanied me to the interview.

Again, I want to be perfectly clear, I AM NOT SAYING NOT TO USE ADRIAMYCIN OR ANY OTHER ANTHRACYCLENE.  These posts have been about showing the need, and the benefit of technology that is available, but unfortunately not being used by EVERYONE and it should be.  It is unacceptable to hear the words “not cost effective”.  Tell that to Michael’s mother who today is recognizing the 3rd anniversary of her son’s passing.

Please, whatever form of social media you use, we, as advocates, patients, and survivors can make a difference for those who have no idea what is happening with their bodies, and for those about to face this journey.  Like the expression goes, “one person can make a difference.”

I have enough followers and readers of “Paul’s Heart” to make that difference no matter what corner of the country or area of the globe you live.


Michael and I shared a lot in common.  Our birthdays were just one day apart.  We were both diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma around the same age.  We both got to hear the word remission.  We both suffered heart damage from the treatments we received.  But that is where the similarities end.

On a personal note, and this is something I struggle with every day, I went through so much more in regard to chemotherapy and radiation (he never received radiation like I had).  I am here.  Michael is not.  And Michael is not the only one.  This is just a small part of the survivor guilt that I have carried with me most of my survivorship years.

Which is why I have titled this series of posts, “If My Survivorship Will Mean Anything…”

Please, I cannot stress enough the value of the information that I have researched and shared with you.  It is now up to you.  Be your own advocate.  Be the advocate for someone who is not able to speak up for themselves.  Do not take “no” for an answer to take this extra precaution when dealing with a chemotherapy or radiation treatment that knowingly has the potential for heart damage.

Michael, this is for you.

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