Well, as a semi-practicing and semi-retired engineer and current part-time
engineering consultant, I will offer my 'reactions' to the knowledge that I
had PCa three years ago. My prime expertise was (and hopefully still is) in
material property testing and failure analysis.
For 64 years, I must have been working on the assumption (as explained
somewhere earlier in the Circle) that I was going to live forever, because
every day I woke alive verified that assumption. Knowing I had PCa was a
real blast of reality, and produced the probably common "Why ME?" sad-sack
response for a couple of days. Believe me, it was not pleasant to know the
PSA test, the DRE examination, and the biopsies all said "CANCER."
After realizing that "ME" was no different from everybody else, the old
failure analysis procedures kicked in. My business has always been telling
customers what was wrong with their 'product', and why it wore out too soon
or broke unexpectedly in service. The second part of the work was my
recommending corrective action for their consideration. It finally occurred
to me that I very much alive yet, and there were some obvious corrective
actions that could be taken, and I could damn well beat it if I stopped
feeling sorry for myself and would get out and DO something. The "DO"
something at that point was a review of my specific PCa situation, compare
the advantages and disadvantage percentages for each option, and from that,
make a decision as to what I was specifically going to do to beat the PCa.
I guess the critical points I had to go through were that denial wasn't
going to do me one bit of good, and it was time to face the situation before
it went spontaneously critical and become totally deadly. I had an uncle (by
marriage) that died with PCa about 10 years ago, and I knew it was a nasty
terrible way to die.
Now, that's my specific reaction process. Maybe it'd work for another
'engineer', and maybe it won't. If my initial tests had been inconclusive, I
am pretty sure I would have pressed on until I knew whether I had PCa or
not. That wasn't my problem.
(written Jan. 01)
[Images are for illustration only and do not represent those involved.]