The holiday season is officially upon us and it is time to be thankful for all the gifts in life!

I am thankful for all the new developments and discoveries that have been made in Melanoma research this year. Really amazing stuff. In fact, I heard that MD Anderson has started what they are calling their own “Race to the Moon” campaign. It’s named after Kennedy’s famed Race for the Moon speech.

“Kennedy did not say we were going to study how to go to the moon. He said, 'We’re going to go to the moon,'” MD Anderson President Ron DePinho said at a morning press conference. “It’s not enough to discover, we must do."

The program is establishing six separate teams of researchers and clinicians to focus on CURING acute myeloid leukemia and myelodysplastic syndrome, chronic lymphocytic leukemia, melanoma, lung cancer, prostate cancer and certain types of breast and ovarian cancers.

Hear that Marty?  Patty?  Ginger?

We’re going to the moon!  

For all of you guys!  

This year has had it victories, but it’s also had it’s losses.  We have lost far too many young men and women each year to Melanoma. I had to say good bye to my melanoma buddy and gal pal Marty this past June.

Man, that was tough.  

I’m confident we’re close, and with the help of warriors like Marty, Patty, Ginger and all the other unsung heroes, it appears that we’re getting closer.  Hopefully, MD Anderson’s “Dream Team” of cancer research doctors will go to the moon in 2013!

They’re going to do it!

I am thanksful I am still kicking Mr. Melanoma’ s buttocks!

I found out that there is one more side effect that this drug causes.

Enlarged fibroid growths.

And I got ’em.

I like to say that they’re European because I tell people they’re taking residence in my “Netherlands”.....

Okay, they have taken residence in my uterus and in other precious real-estate throughout my body.  They’ve gotten to the point where its time for them to go bye-bye.  I’ve got surgery on December 6 where they are going to be nuked. Hey, I guess I was kind of missing hanging out in hospitals (just kidding!).

Once again my body is giving me “seasons greetings”.

I’m also dealing with some administrative ka-ka - I’m the last one in my clinical trial, but there are several left in other clinical trials that are using the same drug.  I was notified that Genetech wants to “roll up” all of us “survivors” into one clinical trail - apparently, there’s a lot of cost to maintaining multiple trials, and one way for them to cut costs is to roll everyone up into one final group - kind of a “catch-all” group, for us lab rats still on PLX. The bad news is they may make me go to LA monthly again.  That means doubling my travel to LA from every other month to every month, and would be expensive.  There may be a silver lining to this, though - I may get an option to move my treatment and monitoring to a hospital closer to home.....

Time to call my friends at Georgetown.....

And, do you know what I’m doing right now?

W - I - N - N - I - N - G!

Merry Christmas, Happy Hannukkah, Happy New Year, Kwanzaa, Boxing Day, Egg Nog Day, Wineries Day, Pumpkin Pie Day, Chocolate Day or whatever you happen to be celebrating this holiday season!