My Cancer Story Ch. 98 “Gardening 101”

Chapter 98: “Gardening 101”

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“The Mayan Prophecy” was a mere handful of months away, and wouldn’t you know it? I was only now diving into my goal of making movies. If the past eight or nine years weren’t enough time to achieve said objective, then the only movies I would “make” would be the ones I wrote to appease the mutant monsters that would overrun the post-apocalyptic landscape. Timing was never my thing.

 

Speaking of timing, a revelation had only now struck me while visiting my Dad up North; we were terrible kids. We gave our parents such grief and even cost them hundreds of dollars because we were idiots, especially when Travis and I were living with just my Dad. We spent so much of our time fighting and the rest sitting in front of our respective televisions, “rotting our brains” on CRT screens rather than spending time with Dad, learning the ins and outs of cars, or simple gardening.

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My Cancer Story Ch. 97 “Promises of Pardon”

Chapter 97: “Promises of Pardon”

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Just when I thought that my creative juices had evaporated, I discovered yet another outlet. I was evolving into an allegorical electrician, and at the same time, a fundamental change in my health insurance threatened the fragile layer surrounding my internal wiring.

 

Eastern Maine Medical Center changed their insurance providers so they wouldn’t have to pay as much of the frontloaded costs. The new company offered a $1,000 “Choice Fund” at the start of each year ($2,000 for families). This ostensibly optimistic offering paid one hundred percent of any bills up front, and after, it was exhausted, then the policyholder would pay one hundred percent until their deductible was met. Then, and only if the person spent past their deductible, the insurance company would pay the expected eighty percent.

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My Cancer Story Ch. 96 “Civilities of Union and of War”

Chapter 96: “Civilities of Union and of War”

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Traditionalism had never been my forte, whether via my recent marriage or the content we produced in The Guttersnipes. Our comedy troupe had been releasing some solid work and some mediocre work. I could tell that something was missing from these ideas, and I was adamant that it was the lack of a proper script framework. Ideally, to me, I thought if we had better prepared for the shoot, then maybe the quality would have been better.

 

Others in the group loved the improvisational approach to our comedic voice, and instead, questioned my edits or my contribution to shooting the videos. The improvisation wasn’t the issue for me, I just wanted a stronger framework around it to enable a more efficient workflow with the little time we had. Both arguments wanted the same thing: a better product. We were like the Hatfield and the McCoy’s facing off against one another without actually sitting down to listen to one another. The majority of the members stayed out of the tussle or never voiced their concerns (to me) directly.

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My Cancer Story Ch. 95 “Getting Married”

Chapter 95: “Getting Married”

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Once we got engaged, Deirdre and I began our humble planning phase. Actually… Deirdre handled the majority of it because I was so busy with school and my projects, but still, we had open discussions about the guest list, the location, and our wedding party. We decided to keep our guest list to a minimum, all the while looking for the cheapest location we could muster. We didn’t care to have a “formal” wedding with a wedding party and all…

 

Okay, truthfully, I had wanted a minor semblance of that. I had always envisioned Shawn, Travis, and Jason in our own version of Frank the Tank’s wedding in Old School. Shawn would be the Vince Vaughn to my Will Ferrell, and it would be hilarious, and Deirdre’s and my version of “traditional.”

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My Cancer Story Ch. 94 “The Guttersnipes”

Chapter 94: “The Guttersnipes”

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Maine was going to be my basecamp for filmmaking success. At least, that’s what I decided. I mean it’s not as though I could move Deirdre and Kaitlyn to LA…

 

I toiled away on the Fort Thomas, but the scripts were slowing to a trickle, and I felt that Travis’ work should have been done by now. I was waiting on his finished artwork in order to create the animatic, so I didn’t want to rework the scripts so much that the animatic would be irrelevant.

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My Cancer Story Ch. 93 “Paying It Forward”

Chapter 93: “Pay it Forward”

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As busy as I had proved to be, I wanted to do more to help others who were currently fighting their own cancer battles. It was another reason for my existence beyond those four colorless walls, and yes, it satiated my Survivor’s Guilt– but I personally wouldn’t be the same if it weren’t for my visitor, Mitch. And sure enough there was only one thing holding me back; I thought that oh too toxic thought: “I don’t know how.”

 

Luckily, I was asked by one of my former nurses to speak to a patient that was upstairs combating the children’s version of Leukemia, ALL. I had a brief moment of pause, not because she asked me to do it, but I wondered how I would navigate such a conversation with a fifteen-year-old. I was almost twenty-five, and I felt too far removed from my childhood. Then I thought of Tori, the girl in the hospital that was from Presque Isle. I seemed to talk with her just fine, and she was only fifteen then, so I decided to keep it simple. After my lapse in judgment, I said, “Yes, I’ll meet David.”

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