My dad is 64 and he was diagnosed with stage IV colon cancer last September. First I want to tell you a bit about my dad. He lives in Bosnia, he was born and raised here. This guy has tried his best all his life and worked very hard, he was never given as much as a free lunch. Neither him nor my mum are even comfortable receiving at all, they are much more comfortable giving.
He quit smoking 20 years ago as well as drinking alcohol, he made a home gym from scratch, with the help of his friend who is a professional welder. My dad went to an actual gym, took measurements of the equipment and made a lat machine, and the benches for his home gym, he bought the weights and bars.
He started working out when he was 40, had to learn it first, and has been working out at least twice a week since then until about 4-6 months before he will be diagnosed. He works at the land registry municipality office and is a hobby beekeeper. He went for a medical checkup every year, that apparently never included a colonoscopy. His cancer was spotted on the abdominal ultrasound, during his annual checkup, because it got so big it could now be picked up by the ultrasound. The doctor asked him which fool did your last year's ultrasound to have missed a tumor this big? He was the doctor that did my dad's last year's ultrasound. He's a good doctor. We aren't sure if he missed anything, or my dad's tumor simply grew very aggressively within those 12 months.
Let me say this, my dad isn't a perfect human being or a perfect dad. I am not here to give you some romantic story of a perfect family. We are a typical, dysfunctional Bosnian family and my parents and I had our differences in the past, but this guy is my first love. I am 41 and I can still remember being 5 and adoring this guy. Thinking he was the coolest, the most handsome, superhuman dad ever. He is also a fighter and a dream cancer patient. He is taking all this much better than my mum, which I guess is to be expected.
He had surgery in October and 25 cm of his colon removed. He was very frail and thin. I don't have any photos of him at that time, I wasn't planning on crowdfunding and taking photos of my very ill, very frail father was the furthest thing from my mind.
Two weeks after his surgery he had surgical complications and the doctors went in again and put in an ostomy on his stomach. He know has a colostomy that will be reversed after my dad will live long enough for his bowels and him to completely recover. To be honest not sure when, we are concerned with chemo now, as my dad's cancer has spread to his liver and he has two secondary tumors on his liver.
In November, after his surgery, the good news was his liver had kept its function despite the tumors. The bad news was he was an apparition and only huge, suffering eyes were left of the man I knew as my dad. This was end of November when he came home from the hospital.
Since then, he has gained enough weight and regained enough health and strength that now he looks normal again. Like a slightly thinner version of my father. All his doctors are pleasantly surprised. His eyes aren't huge and laced with suffering anymore. He is driving, cracking jokes, comforting my mother (his partner of 47 years), and visiting his bees regularly. He returned from the hospital today where he started his first of 12 rounds of chemo. He's doing extremely well, and has handled the first round of chemo better than any of us expected. We now call him the chemo ninja.
My dad has two amazing oncologists looking after him, in a country that is in utter shambles, with a shambolic universal healthcare system. The oncology unit in the province where my parents live is a brain child and a passion project of one woman, who was told ten years ago when she wanted to build an oncology unit in the biggest provincial hospital, that she was unreasonably ambitious and she will never succeed. My dad has been working forty years and paying for universal healthcare and now, thanks to this woman, he is receiving latest folfox cancer protocol free (at the point of receiving treatment) in a top of the notch oncology unit, in a freshly painted room, with good food and kind staff. He stays there for 48 hours and most of that time he is on the chemo drip, then he comes home for two weeks and then he goes to have another round, He has received the first of 12 rounds.
Other doctors that treated my dad were also surprisingly good. We did not expect much, Bosnia is in utter shambles.Most things my dad needs are nearly free or free at the point of receiving treatment, but, yes there's a but.
Since my dad's cancer was discovered so late, his doctor, the amazing oncologist I already talked about believes that his pretty much only chance of complete remission would be smart cancer nanomedicine. The trouble is it cost round 82K euro and it isn't covered by universal healthcare. It is but they only give it to children and young adults with cancer, my dad is too old and his cancer was too advanced to qualify.
He would be very angry with me if he knew I was making this page. We were all specifically told not to crowdfund. His doctor has promised she will pull some strings to try and get his medical to cover it and get him this nanomedicine, because he is in such great shape and has a real chance at beating this, with the nanomedicine alongside the chemo protocol, but she isn't too optimistic he will get it.
If, by some miracle, my dad is given the nanomedicine for free and, by another miracle, we reach the set goal here, we will give these funds to his doctor to buy medicine for another of her patients who won't qualify for the free medicine, and anything over the set amount will go towards my dads medical costs. Like participation bills he still pays as part of his healthcare coverage or gas, etc...If we do get donations but nothing near the sum needed for the nanomedicine it will all go to my parents, as having cancer is costly even with universal healthcare, especially since my dad can no longer work.
Thank you for not TLDR me at a glance and thank you very much if you will donate. I might post photos of my dad on a later date, I have never done this before. I'm not sure how this is suppose to work. I am also one of those people more comfortable with giving than receiving, but i don't have 82K to pay for my dads smart medicine.
Edit: The photos are of my mum and dad in February 2018. I might post some photos of them these days, again I'm not really sure what I'm doing. I couldn't sleep and I thought well, what have I got to lose, except maybe have to have an argument with my father whose got cancer and will not be happy once he finds out I went against his wishes.
Cheers everyone, and thank you.