The Real ‘Stages’ of Cancer Part 1 of 4.

Vin’s Army’s Real Stages of Cancer

The medical field has decided to use a ‘stage’ criteria to, in a way, classify the strength of your enemy. Stage 1 means your enemy is rather weak and Stage IV means your enemy is as tough as they come. I believe this method is extremely faulty as no one can dictate the fight of your Army against any enemy, and every person and Army are very different. I was classified to have Stage IV Stomach Cancer due to the fact that it was present in only ONE place inside my stomach (7 biopsies were done of different areas inside), nothing present in any other organs, but had moved to the outside stomach wall, called the peritoneal. The movement to the outside is what put me in the Stage IV classification, which is equivalent to someone that shows up with tumors in every organ of their body, or is it? There is also a survival rate that is given to many patients that basically tells you to how long they predict you will live. How the hell can someone fight anything knowing the estimated end result BEFORE the fight even starts? I can understand the MOST severe cases of any disease, but everywhere you go, oncologist, online, research centers, every conversation, every writing, have these ridiculous survival timelines all over them. This is sheer bullshit, look up survivor stories and you will see how many people are given ‘weeks’ or ‘months’ to live and are in remission for years and years. This is why I choose to specifically tell each doctor I have ZERO desire to know what they think this ‘rate’ for me will be, and I do not read any of this garbage online. Many of my friends, out of sheer care and support, have looked online and asked many questions, and to them I have stated the same thing, I don’t care to know the negative crap, tell me what good you read and what will help our ARMY win. So far so good, I feel better than I have in years, my weight dropped 30 lbs before we knew the diagnosis as I was really sick, I currently have gained about 25 lbs back, and I can eat and sleep which was impossible before. So you tell me what the knowledge of all this negativity would do for us.

In Vin’s Army true fashion, we say SCREW these stages, and have made our own stages that we use to guide us through this battle. As in the medical field you go from worst to best, we do the same here in the VIN’S ARMY STAGES OF CANCER.

STAGE IV — Enemy has infiltrated (1–5 days)

Well DUH, of course they picked us. Throughout history we have seen battle after battle for 100’s of years, due to the want of something you do not have but someone else does. The offending side is not going to go after someone or something that has nothing. Well we have an abundance of love, faith, strength, support and awesomeness. This is totally expected as we are rich in so many more ways as well, so having to protect that should not be alarming. But it is still, because we are human.

-Disbelief — At this point we cannot believe the news we have been given. Not only were we infiltrated, we were unaware of the size of the opposing bully. You don’t know whether to cry, laugh (seriously laughing is thought here), or just punch your fist into something. You are the most confused in this moment as you have no direction and go forward plan at this point.

-Crying — The hope is that you have some Army members around when the news is given, I unfortunately was home alone and received a phone call on a Sunday from my GI doc. There is crying that happens. I was not in the room when my family (including Akhil) was given the news of severity (which was after the initial diagnosis), but I know the reaction that came. Wanna see a bunch of old people cry, sorry, I wasn’t there to record them and make funny faces. It’s ok to cry, it is ok for EVERYONE and ANYONE that chooses to be emotional during this time. Take this time to get it out of your system because in our stages, you need to get over the overly emotional part very soon.

-Rag doll time folks — Here you are thrown around like a rag doll. You see different doctors that will be a part of this process for about 20 minutes and you will never see them again. They stick and prod you over and over. You go in for multiple surgeries that you can barely understand the reasoning, as you are still so mind EFFED. You don’t feel the pain of the incisions because, well shit you have cancer and that’s all you can think about. Everything basically starts immediately and you have no time to take it in. Around a week later you look in a mirror and finally notice that you now have a port on your upper chest that protrudes from under your skin. You have weird gels and bandages covering the surgeries so they could stick cameras in you and look at your organs. The road starts to fork in two ways ever so slightly here. One route is allowing the picture of your body cut up and infiltrated by a bully to take you down a road of sadness. The second route is you begin to gain the inner strength we all have and decide that this is the start of your healing so who gives two shits if they are doing things to you to HELP you. We picked the latter, please always pick the latter.

- Crazy ass thoughts that mean nothing — All you know about this bully is what you hear, and what we hear about this bully is predominately ( and it’s not even close) negative. At this point you have not had the time to truly think about or look into what is happening. You have had no time to process anything other than the horror stories you hear or have read over the years. Chemotherapy, OMG, the worst. Radiation, doesn’t that burnt the crap out of your skin, leave scars and hurt like hell. Major surgeries, well they are major surgeries, nothing else needed to be said here. Half of us are scared to get a tooth pulled out, got over that quick, lol (well i’m not actually laughing out loud cause I would feel like an idiot if I was right at this moment :)). Then comes the last part of this stage.

-Death- It just surrounds you. Your Army is thinking about it, you are thinking about it, everything you begin to see, you connect death to. This is also where reading into the ‘stages’ and ‘survival timeline’s’ can really mess a person up and make it very hard to climb out of. cancer is associated FIRST with DEATH. Anyone that tells us otherwise is trying to act like they are some sort of all-knowing saint, its BS. They go hand in hand and its impossible not to think about. You think about your wife, your parents, your sisters, your family, your friends, your pets, your job, your house payments, and everything else you could possibly think about, and formulate how they all look without you in them. Isn’t that something!!! Do not try and throw some ‘fake’ ideas to try and push the thought of death down by superficially altering your mind. Fight this bitch face to face, thought to thought, fist to fist. Look it right in its eyes and make THE decision. The ONLY decision to make is to throw up two middle fingers at it, tell it that after this stage ends your only thought is how you will WIN and you will not allow anything to go on without you there. Then drop your mike after you ‘pistol whip’ this bully with it.

Vin’s Army is and everyone else should be too damn selfish to allow life to go on without us in it so the world is stuck with us until God needs us more. It’s that simple.

Stage IV is the hardest stage as it should be. It’s the worst stage and therefore should only last 1–5 days max. We only go and have gone upwards to a more positive stage. Get ready Army

Love you all,


Vin’s Army Soldier

NEXT UP — STAGE III : Buckle up, thrown on them Texas boots and start kicking dirt.