This week I bought eight lottery tickets, four were Mega Millions and four were Power Ball. When I came home and told my wife that I was sure we were going to win the lottery this time, she replied, “Alvin, we’ve already won the lottery!” She was 100% correct, and I knew exactly why. For, not quite three years ago I was diagnosed with a form of leukemia called CLL (chronic lymphocytic leukemia). Chronic is the good part, for some live decades without ever receiving any treatment whatsoever, and die from natural causes of old age or whatever. However the testing analysis that is available these days is so much more sophisticated than in the past; and it was discovered that I had some rather aggressive chromosomes as part of my leukemia.
I’ve been under the watchful eyes of a medical team from M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston and Winship Cancer Institute here at Emory University, as well as the incredible care of my Atlanta internist. After about 15 months of watching the aggressive progression of my leukemia, I was offered an opportunity to participate in a clinical trial under the supervision of M.D. Anderson and coordinated with Winship. I am now in the middle of the second year of that trial, with minimal side effects. I am as busy as I’ve ever been, enjoying playing golf and dreaming of running the Peachtree this coming July 4th.
So, my wife was absolutely correct in saying that we had already won the lottery. How fortunate I am to be receiving the quality of care that I have and to be able to participate in this clinical trial. And you know what? Not only have my wife and I won the lottery, but you have won it also. For you see, you too are alive!