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Sundance Turns the Big 5-0 !!!

Sundanceh's picture
Posts: 4408
Joined: Jun 2009

How do I feel today?

I really don't know. Glad that I made it, but the bells and whistles aren't going off.

I think there are days in your life when you expect or want something more than just the ordinary day. Turning 50 appears to be one of those markers in life that signals more things thing in your life besides the calendar rolling to the next year.

For me, 50 makes me an official senior citizen - even AARP sent me a card, but I didn't fill it out. I still look passable for an ol' guy now - my hair, eyebrows, and eyelashes are starting to grow back. Arm and leg hair trying very hard as well. Hey, and I've got all of my teeth and most of my organ parts and can even walk short distances without having to catch my breath. As long as I dont have to bend over and pick something up off the ground we're in good shape.

I told Kim if she wanted to trade me in - I'd probably be a "big hit" on the senior circuit and have honeys on each arm:) LOL! LOL!

Turning 50 also takes me to that next stage of life where I can look out on the horizon and see the end of the road off in the distance, especially since cancer and recurrence loves me and might see to it that I "retire a little bit earlier than planned."

Having lost this past decade of my life from 2000-2011 R.I.P. I'd like to take the next ten years between 50-60 and get some of that time back, although I know it can never be reclaimed, perhaps this next decade would be kinder to me, if cancer decides to let me live that long.

Back in 2007 when I graduated to the Class of Stage IV, my statistical odds then were 33% for one year. I used to look at a case of 24 waters and wonder which 8 of those bottles would be me. It was at that time, where I looked to myself and said I wanted to make it to 50 or I would feel like life really cheated me.

Life with and without cancer still shows me that the ages of about 48-58 catch up to a great many of us from the grave markers I have read. With cancer, the evidence points to this quite a bit and we need look no further than our fallen comrades that we had here and the ages they were.

So, 50 sounded like a nice round number. It really looks good if you think back to 2007 and they told me I would not see Xmas 2008 at 47 then. Now, I'd like to see 60 now if I could make it and then I could pack my bags and check out of this hotel. Or maybe I might change my mind - you never know with me:)

With 50 cleared, my next immediate marker will be Christmas 2012. If I make that date and the world doesn't come crashing to an end, according to the Mayan calendar, then this date would put me in the 7% bracket of Stage IV patients living 5 years with that stage cancer.

I'll pay special thanks to John23, who posted that statistic one morning on a post - a post which lit the fire in me and installed a hardheadness that I decided I was going to be in that percentile when the calendar changed. Thanks, John! Even I need motivation from time to time and your post poured a quiet, steely resolve to accomplish this mission.

No big plans for my special day. We'll probably go to dinner over the w/end and then this will be quickly in the rear view mirror - no muss, no fuss. I sort of wish I had some type of party - this day is the kind that you build up in your head with higher expectations than they need to be and if they don't come to fruition, there can be a letdown.

My best friend finally called me a month ago with his 50th. His wife spent $1000 and invited a bunch of people for a bowling party etc. He lives in Chicago so there was not a way for me to attend but we did talk and a good story came from that.

He told me that he missed me and that we was "sorry" for not being there for me this past year with my cancer. My buddy had finally gotten it - I never complained or treated him different but I was hurt that I was going through this, but he was absent on the other end. He was and is my best friend and we tore up the roads in our youth and they were the best times of my life. I've missed him. I miss him.

So even though he had a big party, maybe I would be just as content if I had my friend around and we could go shoot some pool like the old days - or just sit back and laugh and reminise about the old days of your youth and all the good times we shared. We grew up together, we shared together, and we experinced life back in the days when there were less restrictions about having fun. They were magic days.

So, thinking about him made me sad today. The day will pass without him in it. I woke up at 50-years in my home state of Texas and realized I did not have anyone here close to me that I could share this day with. Sort of a downer, but I just have to get over it and do what I can do.

I think the day will be more of a day of refelection as I look back and realize how fortunate I am to be alive with most of my mental functionality still working and a body that can still get from one end to another, if we can go slow when I need it.

I think of the others today, who fought so hard for their lives but did not see 50, so I say a special rememberance for them and their families. I think of how hard I fought to see this day and how it was never really in the cards for sure. I think of how lucky I was to wake up this morning and acknowledge this day.

I think of how hard it is in the cancer world to see another year and how much work and even some luck to see it. I think I'll just walk through this day and wake up and try and do another one, if it all works out.

The "Sands in the Hourglass" of this day are already picking up speed, so I better get on with the day. Thirty days over 100 degress here in TX, so we're gonna' try and stay as cool as we can.

No nekkid dancing for me, I'm still trying to walk and not fall down - sort of like those weebles, remember those?

Book is coming along fine, starting chapter 10...8 & 9 nearly killed me for sure. We'll talk about this another time.

No dates on scans that I've heard of although I inquired. Probably in the next 6-8 weeks.

Good to see everybody!

Cuss my name under your breath today in recognition of this day - when I feel a warm breeze hitting my face, I'll know it's you guys:) LOL!


PhillieG's picture
Posts: 4912
Joined: May 2005

Look at it as Middle Age
Welcome to the "Over 50 Club"
Having Birthdays never bothered me at all.
The prospect of NOT having them is what bothers me

daBeachBum's picture
Posts: 164
Joined: Apr 2011

Happy birthday bro :-)

I hope you enjoy many, many more!


herdizziness's picture
Posts: 3642
Joined: Apr 2010

Ahhh my dear friend, about time you joined our special little club, so happy to share the wonder years of the "fifties" with you.
Happy Birthday my friend, Happy Birthday.
I'm toasting you with my morning coffee and thinking warm thoughts about you on this day of yours, so glad that 50 years ago "little Craig" came into this world, to share his thoughts, to encourage, and to lighten others heavy loads for them at times.
Love you man,
Winter Marie

Posts: 1428
Joined: Feb 2011

Happy Birthday, have a good one...Enjoy your dinner out on the weekend :)

idlehunters's picture
Posts: 1792
Joined: Apr 2009

HAPPY BIRTHDAY CRAIG!!!!!!! "Another" toast for CP9! Guess I'll have to ait till then to give you your "spanking"...... hummmm.....


Annabelle41415's picture
Posts: 6715
Joined: Feb 2009

Hitting the big 50 was hard for me, but turning 40 was worse. Now it's just a number and thank God everytime my birthday rolls around again. Sorry your friend can't join you for your big day. It can feel kind of lonely at times. Well whatever you do this weekend to celebrate, here's hoping that you have a great birthday and wonderful evening out.

Hugs and Happy Birthday! Kim

Posts: 188
Joined: Apr 2011

Great post, I just love reading your writing, totally psyched for your book!!!!
Have an awesome day today and every day that follows. Hopes and Prayers Kim

pepebcn's picture
Posts: 6352
Joined: Aug 2010

just know most of us are with today! l wis you to Enjoy many many more!.
Just my warmest thoughts are for you!

Posts: 295
Joined: Apr 2010

Happy Birthday

karguy's picture
Posts: 1024
Joined: Apr 2009

Congratulations,happy birthday,and welcome to the 50's club.May you have many more.

Posts: 489
Joined: Dec 2009

Happy Birthday Craig! You are a true treasure found on this island of cancer. I haven't popped up on the colon boards for some time, but once again, something drew me to it, and it was YOU!!!!

I found that actually saying 50 out loud was somehow harder than writing my age :). Now I'm looking at 53 this December and can't wait to get there! Means yet another round of cancer is behind me ( God willing). Please do something memorable....no matter how small. YOU deserve to have fighter jets overhead spelling out HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ONE OF THE GREATEST GUYS ON EARTH!!!!! I wish you all the best as always my friend!!!!

Posts: 753
Joined: Apr 2011

Enjoy the night with your "better half", the ONE that has been with you every step of the way.


Posts: 827
Joined: Jan 2010

50 isn't so bad and I'm hoping 60 will be even better when I get there.

Craig, have a very, very Happy Birthday and a very happy year as well. You deserve good things.

All my best,

KathiM's picture
Posts: 8077
Joined: Aug 2005

....you don't look a day over 49! *smile*

I was 49 when I heard those 3 dreadful words. Now I'm turning 56 on the 29th of July....and my life is AWESOME!! (Had anyone told me 'after 50' was so much fun, I would have gotten older, sooner!!!)

Hugs to my southern gentleman cowboy, Kathi

ron50's picture
Posts: 1729
Joined: Nov 2001

I'm 50! I'm 60! Glad you made it Craig,sorry the panel work is dented the paint work is pretty well totalled and you are running on five of the eight,but you made it.Turning 50 is not about happy birthday at least it wasn't for me it was about survival about starting another decade of life at 60 it was Oh crap not another decade of this @##$#. I hope you can make the most of the day I wish you a happy survivors birthday,Ron.

Lovekitties's picture
Posts: 3372
Joined: Jan 2010

Congrats on making it to the Big 5-0!

You are now in the group who realize that time goes by very quickly in the large increments (months & years) and seems to go slowly in the smaller ones (hours and days). I have thought for some time that some physics guru needs to figure out how the hours in a day can drag by, but before you know it over half the year is gone.

Celebrate your day, even if it is just with a soda and a cooling shower. We on the east coast are also suffering with the heat. Thermometer in my car said 107 this afternoon when I got in!

May you have many more days celebrating not just your birth but also your survival.


Marie who loves kitties

Posts: 1961
Joined: Aug 2003

Happy Birthday, Craig!!

I do understand some of your reflective comments. On the one hand, it's great to see another birthday come alone (I'm not someone who complains about getting old!). On the other hand, it is another opportunity for reflection and contemplation -- on one's mortality and other things.

One of my philosophies these days (comes from an add for Tiffany's jewellry -- sorry about that!) is "There are Times to Celebrate" -- and I try to seize each and every one!

Many you find many causes to celebrate (and even have party?) in the year and years to come!


LivinginNH's picture
Posts: 1458
Joined: Apr 2010


Best wishes for many more!

Rick and Cynthia

JDuke's picture
Posts: 443
Joined: Nov 2009

Happy Birthday to you
Happy Birthday to you
Happy Birthday dearrrrr Craig
Happy Birthday to you!!!

Congrats on the big "50"!


dianelynn41's picture
Posts: 71
Joined: Jan 2011

Happy Birthday Sundance! My hubby Roby turned 55 today in the big state of Texas.
I hope you had a good day and many more to come.


tootsie1's picture
Posts: 5065
Joined: Feb 2008

Hey, Craig!!!

Happy Birthday to a VERY special man!!! I hope your dinner is delicious, and I hope at least 5 older honeys sidle up to you and try to steal you away from Kim. Wouldn't it be great to see women in a food fight over you? *grins*

Seriously, you're such a special, wonderful person, and I can't wait to see how you look when you're 60. I think you're going to be around to celebrat that, and I hope you have tons of friends at a big, splashy party.

You're a marvel already, but once you pass that 5 year mark, we're really going to have to give you even more respect, my warrior friend.

Happy Birthday!!!


christinecarl's picture
Posts: 545
Joined: Sep 2009

I do not know what it is about birthdays that always makes one want to reflect so much. I will say one thing cancer did, I will never feel sad about getting older, I will let the others do that for me.

I raise my beer and toast to you my friend on your birthday, I will dance in your honor!!!!

lesvanb's picture
Posts: 911
Joined: May 2008

and congrats. It's been a long road, and here's to celebrating reaching this milestone. I told Debra (you and she talked on the phone once) and she sends her best wishes too!

all the best, Leslie

Posts: 965
Joined: Nov 2008

Happy Birthday love!!!

lisa42's picture
Posts: 3661
Joined: Jul 2008

Birthdays for us are conquests over cancer, as you know! Happy birthday!
I felt quite reflective on my birthday too & I pray that I also will be able to celebrate my 50th in another 5 years.

At least your friend came out and apologized for not being there for you- that is more than some would have done, although I sure can understand how disappointing it's been for you to have him be absent in friendship and support.

I admire you a lot, Craig. You are NOT alone!


mukamom's picture
Posts: 402
Joined: Oct 2010

(a day late :-{) Hope it was grand...

Can't wait for your book!


SisterSledge's picture
Posts: 342
Joined: Feb 2011

Sorry I missed your special day, Craig...life's been a serious rollercoaster for me the past few weeks. But lemme tell ya, 50 isn't so bad...well, 50 IS when I got my dx, but in general the age has it's fine points. I'm enjoying not having to try so hard to look like a "babe" anymore...relax and be me all the time...wear purple every day if I want :)

I usually give importance to those special birthdays like 18, 30, 40 and 50 special commemoration. At 18, I got a tattoo...but kept forgetting to breathe and got too dizzy/nauseous to finish it so all I had was an outline :( For 30, I got the tattoo colored. For 40 I had it made larger. At 50, I thought I was done with commemorations and tattoos, so all we did was go out to dinner.

But then, I got cancer, and I decided if I beat it, I'd get a little purple pig with wings...because my Mom always had the saying "when pigs fly" which meant that it would be an impossibility to occur...and my DrDoom was certain I"d never make it two years from dx. Now it looks like I might be able to get that pig...saw the surgeon today and if my CT scan in two weeks come back good, liver resection will be Aug 11th and I'll be cancer-free...the surgeon actually had my birthday (aug4) free for surgery but we both agreed we didn't want to do it exactly on my special day. I might get that pig before the surgery so I"m still 50 when it's done...I love two birds with one stone kinda things :)

Anyways, 50 has it's pleasures and I hope you find them all!

Oh yeah, I'm still thinkin' hard about getting a motorcycle...if I hurry, I could still ride it a few times before surgery :)

johnnybegood's picture
Posts: 1122
Joined: Oct 2008

friend.hope yours was as good as mine.its kinda cool for our birthdays to be so close together.you have always been an inspiration to me.lets hang in there together...Godbless...johnnybegood

Posts: 1956
Joined: Oct 2009

to anyone attaining it......Having done so after your experiences these past seven years.....i know not what else to say butt may you be around for many,many more years to come. Happy ,Happy,Birthday, Craig.......steve

Posts: 520
Joined: May 2011

A very Happy Birthday to you and wishing with prayer many more. Know that best friends do not know how to relate to someone with cancer. Sometimes they avoid because the emotions are too difficult to deal with. Just remembering those fun times from your youth can give you a happy feeling and then you move on to enjoy the day.

Kathleen808's picture
Posts: 2361
Joined: Jan 2009

I love how you write. You really have a great way with words. I hope your day was good. You made it to 50 and you have fought like hell. I hope the next ten are good and that you can enjoy and not have to fight so hard.


pete43lost_at_sea's picture
Posts: 3908
Joined: Nov 2010

dear craig,

enjoy it.


Posts: 395
Joined: Jul 2010

Happy 50th Craig!!! I really hope you can put the 40's behind you and live 30 more years (or more) cancer-free. You deserve it!!! Big Texas sized hugs to you, my friend.


Fight for my love
Posts: 1530
Joined: Jun 2009

Happy birthday,my brother.Cheer for you!

lizzydavis's picture
Posts: 893
Joined: May 2009

Happy Birthday to You, Craig!

Sorry it is a little late but the good wishes are very strong.

I turned 56 on July 25. The older I get, the more relaxed I am. I am so glad to have that peacefulness and able to enjoy life more. My father-in-law who is 92 always asks "you have never been 92 before have you"? He has a point.

Best Wishes and lots of hugs for you!


Age is strictly a case of mind over matter.
If you don't mind, it doesn't matter. - Jack Benny

· To get back my youth I would do anything in the world, except take exercise,
get up early, or be respectable. ~Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray, 1891
You can't help getting older, but you don't have to get old. ~George Burns
To me, old age is always fifteen years older than I am.
~Bernard M Baruch - On his 85th birthday
· Growing old is mandatory; growing up is optional. ~Chili Davis

· Do not regret growing older. It is a privilege denied to many. ~Author Unknown

· Everyone is the age of their heart. ~Guatemalan Proverb

· Men are like wine. Some turn to vinegar, but the best improve with age.
~C.E.M. Joad

Grow old with me! The best is yet to be. ~Robert Browning

HollyID's picture
Posts: 951
Joined: Dec 2009

Dangit, I thought I posted in this already!! Happy Birthday!

I laughed when I read you told Kim she could trade you in. Dave always told me he was going to trade me in when I turned 40 for 2 twenties. I told him he wasn't wired for 220 and he'd blow up. :)

Happy Birthday, dear friend. Loving you from Idaho, friend! and I do not cuss. :)

pete43lost_at_sea's picture
Posts: 3908
Joined: Nov 2010

dear holly i had similar thoughts, we got 220 here and it would tragic to blow up after getting through all this treatment.

laughs and hugs,

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