Yesterday was Thanksgiving, and as crazy as it might sound, I have A LOT to be thankful for this year! Going through something like this really puts life in perspective and I am constantly blown away at how lucky I am. I have an incredibly loving family that I thank God for on a daily basis. The support that is continually pouring in from family and friends is a blessing that I could not have come close to expecting. I am thankful for the care of good doctors and the fact that we were able to get the best to take on my case. Dr. Lacayo actually took a minute to call me yesterday, on Thanksgiving, to wish us a happy Thanksgiving and see how we were doing. How cool is that? I am thankful to have a loving girlfriend and siblings. I am thankful for parents who are able to move to New York and help me through this time. Their willingness to immediately relocate to the city with the best doctors, and dedicate their time to taking care of me, is something that a lot of people don’t have and it reminds me of how lucky I am to have such a close family.

Yesterday was also a day of firsts. It was the first time that I can remember not celebrating Thanksgiving with a home cooked meal and it was the first time I have been to the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. It was also the first time my hair has ever come out in chunks in my hand!
(And so it begins! Haha.)

Let’s start with the parade. It was AWESOME!!!! I wouldn’t consider myself much of a parade person, but then again, I’ve never been to a parade like this! The atmosphere was incredibly fun, the people we were sitting around were all really nice and the balloons were ridiculously big. Sounds like a recipe for a good time to me! We got up around 6am and got dressed up in our warmest clothes and headed down to the 6th floor where we met up with the small group from the Hope Lodge that got tickets. We then headed over and got our seats on the 34th Street Grandstands. They actually walk you into Macy’s and then out one of the 34th Street exits and sit you on bleachers up against the side of the store, lined all the way down the street.

We were about 100 yards past the place where they had all the TV stuff set up. We were right up against the barricades that blocked us off from the street and had incredible views of everything. The balloons literally flew directly over our heads, and with the Empire State Building in the background it made for some incredible pictures! I took 216. The reason I took 216 pictures is because I ran out of room on my memory card, because I could have easily doubled that! Haha. Conservation is key.

After the parade we came back to the Hope Lodge and had our first meal of the afternoon. There was a catered lunch that was put on by a local restaurant and we decided that we should probably have a little turkey so we wouldn’t feel so bad about ordering prime rib at Bar Americain, one of Bobby Flay’s restaurants, later that night! It was a nice lunch and we met some nice people as well. Everyone here at the Hope Lodge is really nice, and we have truly been blessed by all that they do. I will definitely be supporting the American Cancer Society for the rest of my life, that much is certain.

After lunch I took a shower, and when I went to dry off I saw a ton of hair in the towel. I looked down at my shoulders and there was more. I’m shedding worse than our dog Scout ever has! It really is a mess. I think I might just shave it all off today, because it is getting worse by the minute. I have drifts of hair fluttering across my keyboard as I type and if I lightly grab the ends of it, it just falls right out in my hand. It’s ridiculous! Haha.

Last night my parents and I had our Thanksgiving dinner at Bar Americain. It was incredible. They had a price fixed menu, so I had Shrimp and Grits to start, with a Prime Rib entree and we all shared the deserts. My mom had the halibut and it was out of this world. Apparently that is on their Sunday dinner menu right now, so we are going to have to go back for that one!

Here are some more pictures from the parade. Click the thumbnail for the full size image.
I hope everyone had a happy Thanksgiving!

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4 Responses to Thanksgiving

  1. Joan Gregory says:

    We will love you with or without hair.

    We hope to get up there to see you before too long.

    Stay away from the germs of the city.

    I love you!

    (Aunt) Joan

  2. Peggy Redfern says:

    Glad to hear you had a fun Thanksgiving. I had no idea those balloons were so big!

    Penny had a pre-Thanksgiving cocktail party at her house. My two brothers and I gathered around Penny’s screen and read your blog together. It was cool. They were glad to get updated on your adventure.

    The hair thing must be weird, even though you knew it would happen. But, it’ll grow back.

    I took a part-time job at a health food store recently. When you called, I was at work.
    Sorry I couldn’t talk longer. It was so nice to hear your voice. You sounded great and so normal. Made me feel good.

    Hang in there, cousin!! I’m still down here rooting for ya.

    love, Peggy

  3. Heather Stancil says:

    Great pics! I have downloaded them and am using them as a running slide show for my Christmas screen saver. And your Santa waving is now my Christmas desktop background. I love that shot; he looks like he is looking right at me and I like that that means he was looking right at you! Thank you for the gift of these pictures which every time we see them will serve as a reminder (as if we needed one!) of your incredible optimism, humor, and resilience. Characteristics we should all emulate. Early Merry Christmas!

  4. Chaim H says:

    A year since then. How do you feel? ( the couple you met in the hospital )

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