Tuesday, February 21, 2012


I wrote a post for Forbes on how men deal with cancer. I included email exchanges with Howard Rheingold, who had, as he puts it, "cancer of the asshole," Damon Brown, who had testicular cancer, and Marty Wehrenberg, who had stomach cancer.

Thank you to all three men for helping me out, for giving me permission to share their emails, and for being awesome.
So….I know this is not the easiest medicine to take right now, but what I’m telling you boils down to: the fear will diminish with time. Eventually, it becomes a kind of blessing. You notice that everyone runs around pretending they aren’t going to die. Your relationships with your loved ones becomes more intense and poignant. A lot of poetry makes sense at a visceral level. It’s really easy to not sweat the small stuff. On the other side of cancer is an appreciation of life. I have moments every day when the simple act of breathing and the feeling of sun on me is a kind of ecstasy. I see life through a cleaner lens. Nobody would volunteer for this, but surviving the diagnosis and treatment and fear has certain psychological and philosophical benefits.