What Will I Talk About?
Glioblastoma is an aggressive brain cancer that affects mostly 50 and 60 year olds; though the disease is not restricted by age. High grade gliomas are present in all ages, from children to young adults, 30-somethings like me, and those decades older than I am. I started a journal the day that I went in for the MRI scan that revealed my primary brain tumor; I journaled the days before my craniotomy and tumor resection; I journaled in the days following my awake brain surgery. I recorded my thoughts the evening after receiving the diagnosis of glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), a killer that takes the majority of patient lives a year and half following diagnosis. I journaled my way through acute inpatient rehabilitation, and my journal is the basis of the blog I started after hospital discharge.
In this public talk on March 5, join me for an hour long immersion into my personal walk with brain cancer. I bring to light many of the anecdotes, emotions, lessons, and punch lines that so far have only existed inside my head.
Where Do I Find Event Details?
Many of you have responded with excitement for my first public talk I am sharing on Sunday, March 5, 2015, 3:30pm-4:30pm on the south side of Indianapolis. In this post I wanted to hit a few of the highlights that are coming together as we plan for the event. Following these quick-hits highlight is a high-level agenda describing how our afternoon together will be spent. Here is a link to the public Facebook event page. If you have not done so, click GOING if you can make it in person. That will help advertise the event, and aid our planners with room set up.
- Interest has been immense, humbling, and exhilarating. I have friends from healthcare, academia, food service industry, personal friends, and the faith community showing interest. I cannot wait for us to rally together from so many different paths. Following my talk we will have light snacks and time to connect.
- For my friends with young kids. Please join us. CHILDCARE IS OFFERED. Email your kiddo headcount with ages to event planner Lindsay by March 1 to help lock in the right number of sitters.
- I know several of interested folks cannot attend in person. The event will be broadcast on Facebook Live from my personal page. Feel free to “follow” me on Facebook to see my posts and live broadcasts.
- Following the event the video will be posted to this blog.
- Donations will be accepted for my young family during the event, and a silent auction is arranged. Please arrive at 3:00pm if you would like to participate in the silent auction.
- A portion of proceeds from the event will be donated to the American Brain Tumor Association (ABTA).
The agenda is built around two main ideas: first, that we are a community of friends, patients, caregivers, and professionals, and we all have stories within us to learn from given the chance to share. Second, it is our relationships that sustain us through times, good and bad. The agenda reflects these ideas of story telling and connection.
- 3:00pm, doors unlocked to check out silent auction items. Adam and Whitney will be hanging around to greet friends and chat before the talk is underway.
- 3:30pm, Whitney, my best friend and wife, will applaud a few key people for their help. She will cover a few housekeeping items, and introduce me.
- 3:35pm, I will take the stage and share my personal walk with brain cancer. The talk should last around 30-40 minutes.
- 4:05pm, I will field Q&A from those gathered in attendance. I am a fun medical case because I have managed to endure this battle so far with little cognitive impairment. I have much to say, and I want to do my best to address your questions.
- 4:20pm, silent auction winners are announced.
- 4:30pm, light refreshments are available and Adam and Whitney hope to chat with folks one on one who can stick around.
One of the most valuable communities to me has been the #BTSM (Brain Tumor Social Media) Twitter-based/online community. Despite our geographic and often demographic separation, our shoulder-to-shoulder battle to survive brain cancer connects us.
Instragram pictures, Facebook posts, and tweets are welcomed and encouraged from anyone attending the event or helping us with coverage. Please post using the hashtags #BTSM #GLIOBLASTOLOGY and #AandWTumorTakedown
Please reach out with any questions you have! I can’t wait to see you on March 5.