Mike's Lung Cancer Chronicle

Mike is Back. Really, Really (mostly) Back!

Hello friends, Nurse Susan here.  I commandeered the opening paragraph to give you a subjective-objective view of Michael’s progress and current status.  Michael is back.  I know this because this evening as I sipped a glass of chardonnay from a hot bath, Michael was preparing a much-anticipated dinner of steaks, french oven-fried potatoes, and green salad.  Smooth Jazz from Brian Culbertson is wending its way through the house.  A lovely 2005 A. Rafanelli cab is on stand-by.  We haven’t seen an evening like this since before June 2012.  Dear friends and family, the guy we all know as Michael, Mike, Mikey, Uncle Michael, The Mikester, or Mason is back.

Hey everyone, Mike here.  Nurse Susan is right, I’m in the kitchen again and it feels good.  I’m still drinking Gatorade instead of martinis, but you can’t have everything immediately, right?  My walking improves every day.  I clocked 279 miles from July 1 to January 1 (while undergoing chemo, radiation, surgery, and more chemo).  Last week, Nurse Susan and I did the Lafayette Reservoir (first time in many months), and today I did a 3 miler in the neighborhood.  Get ready hiking group (you know who you are!).  I’m thinking Yosemite, Glacier Point, the 11 mile hike down to the floor in September.  Who’s in?

As for my status, I’m great.  I feel good.  The docs view me as cancer-free.  There are no appointments until an April cat scan.  I’m at recess and it feels REALLY, REALLY GOOD!  Plus, the Niners are looking pretty darn good so what’s not to like?

A final note from Mike and his Nurse Susan sidekick:
Thank you. Simple words to be sure, but heartfelt. Thank you for the cards, and the calls, and the visits.  Thank you for the soup and the cookies (yep, BIG thanks for the cookies!). Thank you for the hand-holding. Thank you for the texts and the comments on this blog.  Thank you for the prayer groups, the encouragement, the suggestions, and the good wishes.  Thank you for the hugs and the jokes (love ’em).  But above all, thank you for thinking of us.  We love and appreciate each one of you.

Wishing you — and us — a new year full of love, inspiration, joy, friendship, adventure, peace, and happiness.




  Jiwon wrote @

Hey Mike!

Congratulations and Welcome Back 🙂

  Bridget Cerny wrote @

You’re my hero Michael Mason!!

  Tom of Glasgow wrote @

Mike & Susan we are so STOKED! to hear that the ole “Mike is Back”!!! Can’t wait so to see you at the Ole luncheons, hiking around Martinez and catch you guys shopping around the town!!!

All the Best!!!

  Chris wrote @

I am soo happy to hear you are doing so well. It’s going to be a geat 2013!!!! fellow Sag, Chris

  Patt wrote @

Aloha Michael and Susan~~

Most important thing for me to say to you two is MAHALO!!! THANK YOU for fighting the touch fight. THANK YOU for taking all the extra steps to ensure your recovery. THANK YOU for your sense of humor and willingness to let us all witness your journey — the good, the bad, and the nose hairs.

Enjoy and share the wealth!

Love you,

  John Tuttle wrote @

We’re SO READY for a hike and lunch with you guys. Not quite around the reservoir yet, though. We’ve all learned a lot from both of you.Thanks for including us in all your postings!

  Heather wrote @

So happy to hear “peanut head” is back 🙂 Next time we come visit a hike is in order!!! That trip in September, hmmm sounds like a great adventure for DJ and I to join you guys…hugs from all if us in the valley!

  Doug wrote @

This is just awesome in so many ways. You both are amazing! Hugs!

  Ray W wrote @

New Year, New Beginnings.. Great Start!!! Way to go Mike!!!

  Liz wrote @

You are our new year’s blessing. What a great start to a promising year!


  Cynde Ellis wrote @

Mike, So very happy to hear you are back and doing well!!!! You made my New Year Very Happy. Sounds like a wonderful evening for you both. You both deserve the very best. All the hard stuff is behind you and now it is time to start enjoying life again. I am so proud and happy for you. You are a star in my book!!! Keep it up and God Bless both of you with many many happy days ahead.

  Bill wrote @

Hi Mike. Welcome back. Yosemite sounds interesting. See you on the trails.

  Al H. wrote @

Michael and Susan–What a joyous and inspirational message. We are so pleased to hear this. We know it has been a rough road but we see a bright and wonderful future ahead for both of you. And, we are looking forward to being part of it.

  Sandy wrote @

Sus, Mike: What a beautiful message to send to your friends–how thoughtful you 2 are to have this blog for US…and how dear you both are to sooo many people. You have and do teach each of us how to live in happiness and horror. I raise a martini glass of gatorade laced w/gin to the two of you. Much Love, -s

  Wayne Ritchie wrote @

Super! Stupendous!!
Perhaps ’13 will be your Lucky Year after all.
Goodness-knows ’12 wasn’t.
Glad things looking so bright at your end.
Just had a scare myself, but got a negative biopsy result late Fri., so all’s okay.

  Jan wrote @

Hey Mike! Welcome back to Healthy New Year!!! You DONE good! Susan has kept us informed and we are delighted to smile with you for 2013. HOpe your Dinner was delightful…sure sounded delish!! Looking forward to seeing you soon!

Hike ON! Jan & Jim

  LaRae wrote @

Dear Susan and Mike:

Best news all year! Ok, it’s early but still really really good news and making 2013 look great right from day 13.

Love you,


  Margie Farber wrote @

I am so completely overjoyed to hear of the kitchen stuff, the walks, and this struggle is over and out! You are courageous Michael, and this a challenge we all don’t want to have — but if we do, you and Susan did yourselves proud about what really matters in life. Hugs.

  Janice Worrall wrote @

Hi Michael and Susan A HAPPY AND HEALTHY NEW YEAR to you both … the healthy part seems to be well on it’s way to soundly established based on your latest update…wow this is the best news and I will look forward to celebrating in some fashion when I am back in California…I am heading to PA for a visit next week then back to home base in early Feb…love to you both Janice

  Marcy Rosenberg wrote @

What a great blog entry from Jan. 13. You don’t know me Michael but I worked with Nurse Susan for years at SVB and feel such joy at your recovery. Have a wonderful 2013.

  Joanne Hayner wrote @

Love you Mr. Mason. So glad you are feeling so chipper. Hopefully in the spring I can come for a visit and and we can have Michael’s BBQ chicken. i will make breakfast and you know what that will be.. XXO to you and Nurse/Sister Susan

  Debbi from CT wrote @

So happy to hear your feeling well and beginning to enjoy the new year…..!!! hugs, from CT.

  Cathy Carter wrote @

Love and blessings Michael. God is so good. So glad to hear of your wonderful progress. I know you’ll be ready for that hike :-). Nurse Susan, you are the best.

Take care to both of you!

  Sheri Russell. Cuz wrote @

Cousin Michael
Am so glad things are good , soon baseball season
Will start get ready . Soon to be the super
Bowl Go Niners . Also In Susan’s list of names I did
Not see cousin Michael . Please make correction
Please and thank you . Love you both
Love cousin Sheir .

  Patt wrote @

Aloha from Oahu~
Sister Leslie here. Just read thru the blog. What a great way to pass info- the good, bad and ugly. Happy to hear it is good news now. You both are pretty special people and I look forward to a little coconut shrimp in the future!
Take good care, Leslie

  Vicki Mitchell wrote @

Mike & Susan…
I am late to your long “Left Lung” history though John Tuttle did call me a year ago (more?) and let me know…just today, though, I remembered and wanted to check in. I am so thrilled you are enjoying life again and cancer free. Lovely words, aren’t they, like poetry. Also happy you are on the road to martinis– wine is good, and life affirming, but a lovely martini is a beautiful thing. Love to you, Mike, and to you, Nurse Susan.

  Myrtis wrote @

Finally i quit my day job, now i earn a lot of money on-line
you should try too, just search in google – slabs roulette system

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