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On June 16, 2010 Jack performed the canoe and bike portion of the Citta Challenge and three days later he took off on the two-day, 250-km Ride to Conquer Cancer. He never completed the ride, but withdrew with 50-km to go due to coldness and exhaustion. When I saw him get off the medical bus at the end of ride, in a state of exhaustion, I was so relieved that he had decided to withdraw. All he said was "Swallowing your pride tastes terrible."
When I asked him months later about how he felt about not completing the race, he answered, "Having cancer had nothing to do with me deciding to withdraw - I just realized that I didn't have to kill myself in order to satisfy my ego."
Wow, I thought, this from a guy who was once all about the ego. When I look back at the ride, something in Jack grew.
Maybe it was his positivity or maybe it was when his glass really started to fill up, because over the summer of 2010 we all watched Jack come back. His quick wit had returned, his humour was off the charts, but he was different. Different in a good way. He did not let anything bring him down and he let any negative energy roll on right past him. He just does not take it on anymore. Nothing sticks to him.
I am not sure how he does it and I don't think even he knows. But somehow he just doesn't let the negative shit get to him; maybe he just chooses not to let it bug him.
By September 2010, the Universe said, "If we give you a chance how full can you get your glass?"
The size of the tumour had decreased in size to a pin prick and the doctors decided to give Jack's body a break. They took him off his oral chemo and the Avastin infusions. Then what happened?
Well, it is Jack...and he likes to live life large, so he just kept topping up that glass as it got fuller and fuller.
December 8, 2010 was the magical day! That was the day I saw my best buddy's glass totally overflow. That was the day when the Universe said you have lived and learned....now you can totally live life large!
That was the day Jack was told that the only thing in his head was some scar tissue and his brain. That was the day when he realized he had been given a second kick at the can! This time he vowed not to miss a single moment and to be grateful for every moment in time.