32… 23… the countdowns are on

I am a marked man.

It’s been a while. But that’s okay, because I ran into a time when just as I was getting ready to announce something big, the treatment changed. But now we have the roadmap, and there are two big countdowns coming.

Surgery went well

After the first five rounds of chemo, we lined up for surgery to remove McMurray on June 7th. We got the mass, but because it was right up against the bone and the blood vessels, we weren’t able to get the margin around it. So radiation became part of the mix, once the wound healed.

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Tricking out my walker.

A post shared by Ike Pigott (@ikepigott) on

I was on the walker for less than a day. The hospital stay was only one overnight, and recovery with my parents went as well as anyone could have hoped. Even got off the painkillers weeks before expected.

Over the course of the next few weeks, I got some stamina back, and the hair.

For a while, it appeared as though I would not have to do any more chemo. But the lack of margin around the tumor meant we needed to proceed, in case there were microscopic cells hanging around.

The beginning of the end

Tuesday, I started radiation focused on the knee. That’s why you see the markings on my legs, so the technicians can quickly line me up in the same spot every time for a 90-second dose.

Over the next few weeks, I will have a nicely sunburned knee, with dryness and some stiffness. Every weekday for the next 32 days.

32 more days of applied physics, to kill the cancer.

The middle of the end

After the 32-day countdown, I have 23 days to go. But they won’t be in a row.

I still have seven more rounds of chemotherapy, resuming the same protocols and drugs we used before.

  • Five straight days, eight hours.
  • Wait three weeks.
  • One eight-hour day.
  • Wait three weeks.
  • Five straight days, eight hours.
  • Wait three weeks.
  • One eight-hour day.
  • Wait three weeks.
  • Five straight days, eight hours.
  • Wait three weeks.
  • One eight-hour day.
  • Wait three weeks.
  • Five straight days, eight hours.

Done. Over a five month stretch, that’s 23 days of applied alchemy, to kill the cancer.

Still smiling, still grateful

I have a lot of support, in some ways more than I can use. (I’m trying to spread things around.) And I appreciate each and every one of you who has reached out.

The team at Alabama Power has been outstanding, giving me the ability to work from home when I can, operate on a flexible schedule, and work on projects that don’t require me to be in the middle of the mix.

My family has been on point, and ever so helpful. And I will always owe a debt to the people who took care of getting me to and from the chemo appointments when I am not allowed to drive. (You’ll be hearing from me again when the dates get firmed up.)

I was hoping to wrap this all up in 2019, but the calendar math just doesn’t work out. I won’t get to ring the bell until we get into January. I’ve heard other people ring it, and I will have my turn.

Thank you all…

20 thoughts on “32… 23… the countdowns are on”

  1. You have my prayers and I read every word of your posts. I know you can spell so no worries there. I know you can get through this and ring that bell! I have faith!

      1. You’ve been and will continue to be in my prayers. I was hoping you could leave this all behind in 2019 as well, but ringing the bell isn’t a bad way to start 2020 at all. Can’t wait until you have that day. 🙏

  2. Your upbeat sprits and attitude during all of this Ike has been inspiring. Keep fighting and know we are all behind you cheering and loving you.

  3. Thanks for the update Ike. Keep up the attitude. It lifts up those who surround you — as I hope we’re able to lift you up.

  4. My friend, I am so in awe of what you are going through and how you handle it. My husband had cancer so I know the stress. If you need a ride I can help. And I am great at ordering dinner! I have a weird, fluctuating work schedule so I’m free a lot of weekdays, various mornings and afternoons. I’ll message you.

  5. Thanks for updating us Ike. This will be grueling but you will get through it and we will all be here cheering for you. And I just want to add a big digital hug.

    1. So very proud of how you’ve pressed forward and are knocking down milestones toward that goal! I’m cheering for you!

  6. Still cheering you on! It is an amazing time that we live in: that we can even expect to survive following a cancer diagnosis! I discovered a whole different outlook; every day is more appreciated; beauty in the “every day” that I used to take for granted; and appreciation for the kindness of stranger, and the joy of doing something kind for someone else. Remember the quote: “What doesn’t kill me, makes me stronger!” Go for it, Buddy! It will be in the rear view mirror before you know it!🙏🏻😘

  7. Prayers continue from South Carolina. You are doing all the right things with that fighting spirit. I know you will kick that cancer.

  8. That’s….a LOT. No other way to say it. I’m awed by your tenacity, your honesty, your stamina to deal with each hour, each day, each week of this trial. You’re a badass, no other way to say it.

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