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Thursday, December 15, 2011

I See Trees of Green

Blogging Tunes: Grateful Dead - 1972-04-08 (remaster)

Life is full of dichotomies. For the Landers' family, life has taken a devastating turn and will never be the same. Yet the very same week that I attended one of the most incredible memorial services ever and shed more tears than I have since my own diagnosis more than 13 months ago, I am having the highest energy week since my transplant. I feel profound sorrow while popping with a new level of energy.

If you haven't seen it, here is Patrick's obituary from the SF Chronicle.  As mentioned, there is a fund set up for Patrick's kids. For more information about that and for all subsequent Landers updates, please see: http://www.loveforlanders.org/



The memorial service Tuesday at AT&T park was unbelievable. It's not my place to go into detail here, but let me just say, that I have gained a tremendous respect for the Giants organization. They did this thing right. Also, knowing that Patrick got to experience the 2010 World Series win takes a little bit of the sting out of the NLCS for me. Just another reminder how Patrick and I will be forever tied: I was diagnosed the day after the parade, which I actually attended. I was sick, he was partying. Nuts.

I will share one photo of the big screen at the Park (which flickered through the camera -- click it for hi-res.) It was surreal to enter the lower level, and sit with 800+ people and a couple dozen seagulls, in an otherwise deserted stadium strangely setup for football:

Patrick Lander Memorial Service at AT&T Park

As I mentioned, I'm having a high energy week -- hopefully, I've turned a corner. My counts are continuing in the right direction, and my team is extremely pleased. I'm down to 0.35mg of the Tacrolimus and will drop to 0.3mg next week. Platelets are up to 130, and everything else looks good. I still have cold/numb feet, but I'm learning to just deal with it. I also have quite a bit of muscle soreness, but again, nothing I can't handle.

I'm going full-tilt at work, usually leaving the house at 7:30a and returning at 7p on a typical day. When I first went back to work, I'd be in bed by 8:30p every night. Yet, here I am at around 9pm, blogging away. And I still want to watch the third period of the Flyers/Habs game.

Heather and the kids are doing great. Our good friend Eyan did a photo shoot a couple weeks ago at China Camp. I have this picture spanning two 1920x1200 monitors at work:

Floyd likes 'em up in the zone - click for super-hi-res

Here's one more of the whole family:

Heather, Orion, me, and Floyd  - November 26, 2011

We'll post the best of the best (with honors) to flickr at some point. Speaking of movie quotes. Don't forget to watch Trading Places this holiday season. And look at that "S" car go!

One last tidbit: last night there was a pajama holiday party at Little Arrows (Floyd's pre-school). There were a ton of kids and parents there -- the place was literally jam packed. Some guy with a guitar printed a bunch of Christmas tunes with chords and lyrics and the two of us totally rocked out while dozens of parents sung along. It was killer. After the holiday tunes, we jammed out a few classics like Cripple Creek and a wonderful three-chord Dylan tune I didn't know. Lots of good vocals backing us up. I forget how fun it is to jam with people who can play. I see another band in the future. Just a matter of time.

Kicking more ass every day,

-jg

Thursday, December 8, 2011

And My Friends They Come Around

Blogging Tunes: CFL All-hands webcast

I really don't know how to write this blog entry.  When this craziness first started for my family last November, it was all about us.  I was the center of a screwed-up universe where we didn't know if I was going to live or die. During my battle and throughout my continued recovery, I have gotten deeply involved with the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and have met (and am working with) some incredibly strong people fighting their own incredible battles.  My universe has expanded and it seems that I have found a mission of sorts.

This is a picture of me and one of the most amazing fighters I met this year.  It was taken just before the Light the Night walk in San Francisco.

jg and Patrick

The fighter is Patrick Landers and it is with deep sorrow and pain that I reluctantly report that Patrick lost his battle with Lymphoma on Monday due to complications following his bone marrow transplant.  He is survived by his wife Christine and his two boys: Aidan and Ty. Words cannot express the emotions I feel as I write this, but I guess this will have to do: not fair; sad; pissed off; sucks; hate cancer; not fair; sorrow; not fair; anger; not fair; fight.

Over the next several weeks, we expect some kind of Landers Foundation to be created through the San Francisco Giants.  We hope that you will play a part.  Oliver Demuth and I will lead the charge.  If you are interested in contributing, please visit this blog often for updates.  I will post updates related to the Foundation as well as info on how you can help Christine and the Landers family.


A Note about Light the Night. For the 2011 walk, the San Francisco Giants Love for Landers team raised over $85k for Light the Night, blowing away second place Salesforce.com who raised $58k.  For more information about Light the Night, please visit: main site | san francisco chapter

Not in a kicking mood,

-jg