My name is Joel and I live in Seattle.
I have a dog named Telex, he's named after the Radiohead song "Planet Telex". I help make software for a living. I was recently diagnosed with Lymphoma, which is a blood cancer. I'm on chemotherapy and I'm doing well so far. I'm told that I have a great shot at getting it cured over the course of several months of chemo treatments and maybe a little radiation at the end.
I work in one of the coolest places ever. We have pinball games, a gigantic theater and a kitchen which serves meals three* times a day. We work hard and we laugh hard and we get a lot done. My coworkers have been bringing me meals and spending time with me so I don't have to be alone. I have paid time off to get better. And insanely good health insurance. I love my job. *Sometimes afternoon cookies, too.
I just got a new car which is pretty awesome, though I haven't gotten to use its all wheel drive feature much. I wanted to ski more this winter, but it's been difficult to say the least.
I like to play guitar, make beats on the computer, program lights to flash on an Arduino board or watch movies and play PC games during my spare time, which has been growing larger.
In January, I started to feel light headed and dizzy once in awhile. I thought it would go away, or that it was an ear infection, or something I could just deal with. It got worse. Eventually I had to go to the Emergency Room because I felt so ... weird. They found that my calcium level was very high, and told me to follow up on it the next day. So I did.
And the next day.
And then I was in a world of hurt. I couldn't do anything. Shower, drive, I could barely make it to the waiting room at the doctor's office because my head hurt and I was so emptied out, mentally and emotionally. I just wanted to feel better.
This began the process of going to the hospital, getting tests done (bone marrow biopsies SUCK), and finding out I have lymphoma. That is a tough pill to swallow.
Luckily, my friends have also been amazing. Some stay overnight, some bring me food and flowers, some take me grocery shopping and some set up crazy websites for my family and friends to stay connected to me. Some have been there while I cried, others have seen me laugh inappropriately at a cancer joke I made out of fear.
I have so much.
What I want to find, and I think I will, is a stronger self as someone who has defeated cancer. I want to walk proudly down the street knowing that I have beaten this thing that could have killed me had I not been so strong.
I am so lucky.
I like to chat with new people, so I have my email address below. It's an image so you'll have to re-type it if you want to send me something. It's fun to imagine that someone I don't know might be able to relate and start a conversation.
If you'd like to send me money for any particular reason, or no particular reason, I accept bitcoin at this address:1F3CVJcq7sGje2B4MQz5b8TkBz9S9qJ6iu