The Struggle Has Ended

Greg Hewlett passed away on January 17th after nearly eight years of battling colon cancer. While we grieve his loss, we are comforted to know that he is with his Lord.

If you would like to leave your thoughts on Greg, please see this thread.

If you would like to make a charitable donation in Greg's honor, please see this thread.

Monday, October 13, 2003

Cool Hand Luke

Well, I'm back on the chemo track. In fact, I'm taking it as I write...

I'm in a private mini hospital room with Christine - they use these rooms to administer outpatient chemo. They've hooked me up and the chemo is just beginning. Soon, I'll feel sick, but right now I'm feeling fine. In fact, I�ve been feeling steadily stronger day by day.

Last week, I spent a lot of time resting in between eating and trying to keep up with work. While watching TV, I caught a favorite old movie of mine, Cool Hand Luke. It has a classic scene that I find fascinating. Paul Newman plays Luke, who is sent to a low-security prison for sawing the tops off parking meters. Shortly after arriving, out on the grounds of the prison, Luke gets caught in a boxing-style fight with Dragline, the local prison bully. It is not much of a contest. With the other prisoners gathered around in a circle watching, Dragline hits Luke again and again without much resistance. The pounding continues to the point where every blow causes Luke to fall to the ground. Again and again he is knocked down, yet he always manages to stand up again, against the advice of the sympathizing observers and even Dragline. �Stay down, you�re beat,� utters Dragline. �You�re gonna have to kill me�, Luke replies. The remarkable outcome is that Luke has such an iron will that the bully finally just walks away. While the technical "loser", Luke comes away the psychological winner.

Later, Luke wins with a bad hand in a poker game and Dragline says it was just like the fight. "He kept comin' back at me with nothin'." Luke's response results in his new nickname, "Yeah, well sometimes nothin' can be a real cool hand."

I think fighting cancer is a lot like that fight scene. The cancer-chemo bully hits you every time you get enough energy to stand up. Again and again this continues. Here I am just getting to my feet after the surgery and I'm about to get hit by the bully again. The goal of the process is to be like Luke - keep getting up until the bully gives up, even if you got nothin'.


Nils said...

Luke was cool, but don’t you go trying to eat fifty hard-boiled eggs.

Roland Lindh said...

I'm thankful you didn't say "Mary Poppins;" if you had I would have come down and ripped out the chemo-tube with my bare hands!

sue said...

And haven't you done a fantastic job of getting back up!

Craig & Maria said...

Thanks for being such an encouragement to so many. I added our pastor to your site updates.
Keep trusting in Him who said He will help!

Judy Kovacs said...

Cool hand Greg. I like the sound of that. Hang in there. You're better than cool. God is on your side. Either way, YOU WIN!

anne said...

The only difference in this analogy is every dose of chemotherapy will make you stronger because it is attacking the sick cells. We are so thankful for all your progress so far and cannot wait until the weak cancer cells are no more. And Greg, you have got everything--a fighting attitude, a network of friends and family that love and adore and miss you, a loving marriage and a faith that continues to see you through.
all of our love,
the murrays
p.s. guess who is going to be sunshine for Halloween? Somebody with a big heart full of love for you.

curtis frodge said...

well certaintly takes a cool guy to keep gettin back up like you. hope all is still goin well and that youre feeling stronger now too. been prayin for ya every day man usually when im brushing my teeth so God will clean hat cancer right out of you like a tooth brush :)
oh yea i meant to tell you your poop post was great i really enjoyed it a lot. poops always been an interesting word for me and my friends b/c it can be used as a noun and verb obviously but the funny part is when we just use it as a random greeting on instant messenger or to express our discust in a situation, which made me laugh when i thought about you doin that there b/c the reaction of the nurse outside the room would be classic. they come running in the room what? where? and you reply oh no no i just forgot something. i dont know maybe just me thinking thats funny but i got a good laugh hope you did too. have a good one man, tell christine i said hi, sure love you guys and im prayin for ya.