Today is a day of apprehension for me because my cousin Rick who was diagnosed over a year ago with glioblastoma is having another surgery to remove as much of the tumor as possible. Rick and I grew up next door to each other. He was my primary playmate and mentor as a kid. I learned all kinds of things from him such as how to shoot a 22, how to shoot marbles, how to play baseball, how to cuss, how to drive a stick shift, and many more. He is 3 years older than I am and was a great instigator in a lot of things that I ultimately got blamed for by my parents. Neither he nor I have siblings so we are like brother and sister.
He is now having a very tough time with this terrible brain tumor. I haven't seen him since the summer but get reports from his wife Nat who gets a nomination for sainthood as she is carrying the whole burden of caring for him. I am planning to go to Virginia in January and am trying to be optimistic in spite of the dismal prognosis for this worst of all brain tumors. Rick is a very smart person who enjoyed life. It is hard for me to imagine him not being the vital person that I have known. My thoughts are with him as he undergoes the surgery today and the recovery in the days to come.