Dr. Al Danenberg ● Nutritional Periodontist
December 20, 2020
Photo by Jackson David on Unsplash
I’m so grateful!
I’ve had the support of family, friends, and acquaintances. I’ve taken a deadly and incurable cancer and have surprised my oncologist. I am living a quality life with minimal symptoms of any disease. Thankfully, I live in a free country where I can express my spirituality and my inner beliefs openly and courageously. And I can share all my experiences uncensored and widely. I have much for which to be grateful.
Most importantly, I am grateful for my readers and followers. You have touched me deeply. You have “made my day” many times over. You have no idea!
I began writing about my cancer journey on September 17, 2018, just after I was confronted with My Mortality. Starting then, your sincere and heartwarming comments have brought tears to my eyes! My wife thinks I’m too emotional. That may be true. But I know I’m deeply moved and thankful.
I want to share some of those tender sentiments. You’ll read why I have been uplifted and emotionally transformed.
After I published Smile! on December 6, 2020, Malinda W. wrote in FaceBook about her personal experience:
Thanks for sharing. It was good karma that this was your post this Monday. I went for a 2 mile walk down the street yesterday. Pushing myself to do it because I really wanted to stay inside and finish my jigsaw puzzle. But the sun was out. I got just around the corner and was passed by two cyclists. I usually will smile and tip the brim of my hat/cap to acknowledge another person. As I passed, one of the men yelled back, “You have a really pretty smile” I told him thanks. As I walked on further, it really made me smile even more. It was such a good feeling and so nice of that person to take the time to say that. It has been a very long time since someone told me that. And then I started to cry a bit as smiling used to be part of my everyday with no thought involved. And I have put smiling up on the shelf. Thanks to you, I will have to practice it more and take it out of the dark place it has been hiding. Thanks Doc!
Twist of Fate
I wrote a blog about my wife having a medical concern that required me to be her pillar of strength. After I posted about this Twist of Fate on November 1, 2020, Rosemary opened her heart by writing this:
Thank you for sharing this today, Dr. Danenberg. I’m so sorry to hear of this new challenge your wife is facing. My heart goes out to you both and your family. One thing is for sure, you’re both incredibly strong and resilient people. I’ve been following your blog since before your diagnosis in 2018, and one of the things that has always stood out to me is the wonderful, supportive relationship you and your wife share. I’m so glad you have each other and share such a deep love & gratitude for one another. I am certain it will bring you both through the challenges, come what may. You’re both such an inspiration, truly! I’m so glad you’re not letting the “haters” get to you. I look forward to your emails and blogs each week – thank you for what you share here. Sending lots of love & healing to you and your wife!!
What Goes on in My Head
On October 4, 2020, I decided to jot down What Goes on in My Head while dealing with my cancer journey. In reference to that post, Barbara C. shared her deepest thoughts:
I was trying to find the words to express the depth of admiration I feel for you and your strength; physically, emotionally, and spiritually. You give me strength for those moments when my emotions try to take me down. I don’t have cancer or any life-threatening issues. I just have my own vulnerabilities and find comfort in your words. They bring me back to reality, and the understanding of how very fortunate I am, by the grace of God. I have been following you from the beginning and will follow you until the end. Thank you, and God bless you and continue to watch over you.
And Karen D. added:
Thank you for being so vulnerable & transparent about this very personal journey. Those of us navigating the cancer reality resonate with your descriptions of thoughts, fears, & anxiety that almost come out of nowhere at times. My husband is a 12-year cancer survivor having undergone every treatment available to him, including a multi-organ transplant 7 years ago. He also is not cancer free today. But it did reset the clock, and he has resumed taking advantage of available treatments & living a healthy lifestyle. The transplant has given him 7 bonus years (and counting), with innumerable blessings & opportunities to share a message of hope with others.
Cancer is a unique megaphone. Thank you for your inspiration. We should all live life intentionally because none of us knows what life-altering event or diagnosis is ahead of us. Today is a gift.
Prayers continue for your brave journey of living life abundantly!
Living with Abundance
On August 16, 2020, I wrote about Living with Abundance. Mitch P. was moved to write about his surprise:
Wow! Never knew of challenges 1 & 2 – only the 3rd one. Baruch Ashem (thank God). You overcame all of them! I have been following you for about 3 years. And when you were in hospice, I thought you were a goner? Keep on keeping on.
And Nancy M. continued with her comment:
Whenever I read your stories, I feel so grounded and able to put life issues in perspective. Sharing your journey with us is such a gift. Your strength (and your wife’s) is astounding. I want you to know that your writings have helped me through some tough times. Namaste.
Surprise Response to My Cancer Journey
I wrote about a Surprise Response to My Cancer Journey. Here is a reaction from Cindy S. that took my breath away. This post on June 22, 2020 referred to a “hater” who wrote some terrible things about me. Cindy expressed her concerns, her support, and finally her personal loss:
I appreciate all the thought, research and effort you have graciously shared with the internet community. I enjoy reading your posts and celebrating your journey.
Your attitude toward this narrow-minded individual is to be congratulated. You show your confidence in your insightful reply and in posting his cleaned-up “4-letter vocabulary” rant. (I didn’t need those words!)
As an aside, 7 months ago, my brother discovered his stage 4 lung cancer. He died last week after months of painful traditional chemo/radiation treatment. An alternative plan takes a lot of energy, courage, faith and will that my brother didn’t have. As you know well, too much pain makes it hard to make hard choices vs going with the traditional flow. So, I love reading about your success.
I’m Cancer Free – Maybe
These final two expressions were in reference to my announcement on May 11, 2020 that my recent PET Scan showed I’m Cancer Free – Maybe.
Amelia was driven to write:
I’m sitting here in my lounge room in Australia reading your update on my iPhone. I know how much courage and pure grit a journey like this requires. I’m cheering you on every step of the way. Thanks for sharing your experiences because you are helping so many people … including me. All the very best to you xx
And Ted recounted his sad loss after reading my blog:
Your journey is a blessing to read and follow. My wife was diagnosed with breast cancer in June of 2015, and we had been following your path. She passed away on April 14th. It is so strange that when we first heard your diagnosis, she was doing well, and you were given such a dismal prognosis. She was on her own form of unconventional journey, tailored to her diagnosis and research. You inspire me and clearly many, many others. Keep moving forward and sharing the hope through the struggle!
I could go on with more than a couple hundred other sincere comments just as moving as these.
After 73 years, I know what matters in life. It’s all about living a quality life, which includes spreading and receiving love. And an important part of all this is making memories.
You, my wonderful and endearing readers, have provided me with outstanding and everlasting memories. I will cherish all of them for the rest my life.
Thank you! I am sooooo grateful!!
Check out my new training on the Better Belly Blueprint! You can watch it HERE.