Starting Our Next Journey


Friends and family, first my apologies for reaching out to you on this topic via Facebook but for a non trivial fraction of you, this is my current best contact channel.

DrC, the girls and I started the next phase of our journey on Friday last when our captain was diagnosed with multiple myeloma, a rather nasty bone cancer. It's one of those situations where the numbers online don't help so much, can't reflect outcomes for treatments only introduced in recent years, and are just flat out depressing. I don't  recommend spending any time with them.

DrC is receiving excellent care, starts treatment this week, and we have our fingers crossed. We found out about the cancer because he is so damn strong and healthy he started breaking his own bones at the gym.  Unfortunately the bones he broke are in his spine. Most of what we are dealing with right now is back pain management. And DrC management. I'm looking out the window right now watching his daughters attempt more or less unsuccessfully to get him to stop pitching in on a hot tub cleaning project.

We are well supported in New Zealand with local friends and as well as people who sailed over here with us. He is under the management of the top clinic in the country for this disease with outcomes equal to any quality facility in the States. My work folks are being super understanding, so are his. The kids are trying to keep it together and be as normal as possible. This means finishing high school for Mera, finishing the school year for Aeron, and two new jobs for Jaime.  So we stay here.

That man sucks at social media so my recommendation is an email to dean dot conger at gmail if you want to chat.  He is being forced to take the next few weeks off so by all means invite him to play words with friends or scrabble.  Maybe you will have better luck getting him to stop moving than we are.  I, of course, will be oversharing on my blog at I won't cross post to Facebook, Google or Twitter because that is just grim. I can't promise I won't sometimes lose my shit and post insanely depressing stuff, but so far most of what is inspiring me to write is the response of our amazing daughters and the support of our incredible friends… Who apparently are not above gallows humour and for whom the answer to the question "too soon?" Is apparently never!

There will always be before we lived with cancer and the rest of our lives. But our objective is to maintain the right balance between pragmatic and hopeful. And mostly just live for today…. Which is basically par for the course. As Dean said, "Buy the best ground tackle, pick the spot, set the hook, and hunker down with a good beer. No changing anchorage now."