Monday, September 14, 2015

Been a long time since you have heard from me

     Thank you for the 7 that still follow me, after I have not posted I believe in over a year.  It has been tough over a year now.  Toward the end of 2013 and well into 2014 I began to fall into a deep depression, that I never thought I would get out of.  I started having seizures and I could not legally drive for 6 months after the last seizure.  Well after 1 year 7 months and 8 days I was able to drive again.  Praise God! 
     During that time, I watched my mother go from a vibrant mother/grandmother to a person who did not know any of us and wasted away due to Dementia.  I was with her on July 26th, along with my wife, to help her leave this world and step into heaven as a whole and healed person.  I didn't feel sorry, but joy, when she left us.  She is in a much better place than all of us.  Thank God for salvation!
     Over the past year, I have had more trials than I can name.  In March I found out that my cancer had changed from a Grade II to a Grade III and was going to require Radiation and Chemo.  This was not a good thing.  After finding I would be driven to Duke and back 5 days a week for 6 weeks, I reached out to friends to see if anyone could help pay for some of my gas.  I thought that I calculated right in the increment and asked for 500.00 hoping to get anything.  I got $500 in about 2 hours.  When it was all said and done with, the generosity was unbelievable.  I received about $1400, and guess what, that was exactly what I needed to get through it all (Apparently, I can't I have been humorously told)  God is amazing! I am now on Chemo 5 days on and then 23 off.  The 5 days has been kicking my butt...but it is worth it.   Another blow came on July 7th when I could not reach my father.  I kept calling him while driving from Greensboro to his house.  Occasionally, he would go out and take himself out to eat, or go and sit beside my mother's burial plot.  This night my wife and I got there at about 7-7:30 and seen his car in garage.  I found the key in the secret hiding place and unlocked the door.  I yelled for him as I walked to where he spent his time in the basement.  When I turned the corner, he was sitting in his chair behind the computer where he always liked to sit, with his dog by his side, and had died.  Exactly where he wanted to go.  I am going to miss him.  I don't know how many times I have wanted to call him and tell him about something funny or just to talk to him.  I had talked to him about being a Christian and he assured me every time that he was a Christian.  So he is with my mom now, worshiping the Lord.  So much to take in all at once for you I know, but God is good and I love my God.  I pray that each day I can be a person that brings people to know Him, instead of pushing them away.  Thank you God for forgiveness.

Monday, February 17, 2014

2 year anniversary #1

OK it sounds weird, but today is the 2 year anniversary of the start of symptoms which would one week later would be diagnosed as a inoperable brain tumor.  During the last two years I have experienced lots of things....both bad and good.  I have been in what seems like the depths of Hell for several months last year in a consuming depression.  I have experienced being told I have something that will probably eventually kill me.  Those things suck.  But what makes it worth it all are the following
1)  Having my whole church body surround me and pray for me.

2) Have people I don't know tell me that they have been praying for me.

3) Being able to pray with a good friend in a situation I would have fled from.

4) Sharing my story with people I don't a a tattoo Chic-fila

5) Taking every opportunity I can to actually stop and talk with others....when I ask "how are you doing?" stop and actually listen when they respond.

6) Learn what is more important in life and what is not.

7) Recently, being able to baptize someone from our community group (My new favorite)

8) Meeting many people who have either just found out, or have lived through excruciating chemo and surgery to survive one of the many types of Brain tumors and cheer each other on.

There are so many stories that I could go on and on about.  God has moved in some miraculous ways just in the last two years.  Much more than what I would have ever expected.   To sum it up the best thing I have found that for the most part I am excited to get up and see what God has planned for me today.  Whatever it is, I can live with that :)

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Not what you expect

Well it has been quite a while since I have written anything about whats going on with me. The last time I went to the doctor I got a good report.  She was pleased with the progress with the Chemo, and in two weeks I may even get to quit taking it for a while.  I also was taken off of one of the medications I was on for seizures.  Another good thing, right?   So how is my life going?  Not so good.  So you ask why would I not be excited about what is good reports about the tumor and not having to take so much medicine....well I am happy about that, the problem is life.  Here, a year and a half after being diagnosed, I have crashed.  I don't know what started it.....I have a loving family and some great friends, so what happened?  I spent a long time to start opening up about it to anyone, even my wife.  Mainly I didn't know how to express the way I felt.  I isolated myself and got to the point of thinking about things that no person should.  This depression had gotten consuming to the point I could not sleep giving me even more time to think about it.  I started talking to my wife about a week ago, she knew I was going through something but not what.  It helped to talk to her about it, even though I didn't want to burden her with even more problems.  I also opened up to a good friend of mine and told him a lot of what has been going on.  It is hard for a guy to open up about deep personal things to another guy.  It is not in the "Man code" to do so.  He went through a similar thing after an even in his life about a year and a half after it had happened.  So he understood, kind of, what was going on.  So with their help, I have started climbing out of that dark hell that I do not want to fall back into.  I have a long ways to go before I can say I am "back" but I am making progress.  Yesterday, my wife sent me a link to a youtube video.  I have heard the song many times, it is a well written song.  The thing was, until she sent me that I had not really listened to the words.  The video also included the words to the song.....I started listening and reading the words and realized that the person that had wrote it, wrote it with me in mind.  It describes how and what I feel.  Maybe of the 3 people that will read this blog, one of you feel the same and can understand.  Here is the video:

Thank you to those that recognize that others are hurting and give a shoulder to cry on.  Being a Christian is not yelling at those that do something wrong.  It is the whispering voice telling the crying friend that it will be alright.Be that shoulder, be that whispering voice to those around you.  Show them that God loves them.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013


When most people think about prayer, it is thinking about the prayer we do when we eat.  No one considers prayer at other times (OK it might just be me J ) I pray a lot more than I used to, as you well know my life had a dramatic change last year.  When I pray for others, I don’t pray that they be healed or that the Dr. will do well with their surgery, I pray that God’s will be done in their life.  I pray this in my life as well.  I don’t pray for my own healing.  I have asked God to heal me in the past, especially in the beginning, but it has changed for me.  Foremost, I want God to be the leader in my life.  I do not want to be the leader.  I do however, like to try and take control a lot.  This just ends in things being worse off.  At this point I want the Lord to do with my life as He wishes.  The only end I would like to see is that He will be glorified.

Just to share what happened in a time of prayer to me the other day.  Monday, I was sitting at my desk at work.   I had so much on my heart.  My wife having struggles with things going on in her life, my mother struggling to go on living as her body and mind are failing her, my father having heart problems and having stints put in yesterday and this is on top of the fact I have been having 4-5 panic attacks a day from stress and just realizing my own mortality.  It came to a point where it was quiet, so I decided I would read the bible for a few minutes (Which sadly is a reality for me) As I read, I felt the need to pray because I have a person’s name taped above my desk that has brain cancer and have been praying for.  I closed my eyes and started to pray for her, along with the other items that have weighed on my heard.  I started to cry, when I felt someone place their hand on my back to comfort me.  I opened my eyes to look and no one was there.  Then I realized exactly who it was.   It was a moment that I will never forget.  Yes, some of you may be thinking I have brain damage, but it was as physically real as anything I have ever felt.  The Lord knew I needed that;   I needed to know He was right beside me and knew what I have been going through.  It makes me extremely humble and grateful that the Lord chose this time to be physically present for a brief moment when I really needed Him.  

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Long overdue update

I am not even sure how long it has been since I have posted an update on my health, mainly because nothing much had really changed to speak of.  They have finally gotten control of my mini-seizures that I was having at least one time a day and sometimes 2-3 a day.  After adding some medication slowly, I believe I have not had any in over a month.  I have had another thing come up though.  I have been having panic attacks.   I believe they actually came about the time my mini-seizures were subsiding and I was thinking that they were mini-seizures.  I have never had them before and they are pretty scary.  There are varying levels I have been having…the mildest is like the feeling that you are leaning back in a chair on two legs and you start to fall.  The other extreme is heart beating fast and sweating and the feeling of helplessness.  Neither are good feelings.  The weirdest things set them off.  I was in the airport the other day waiting for a flight and I was reading about Paula Deen.  I saw where she had started “The Bag Lady” business in 1989.  That made me think back to 1989 and how young I was then and then it made me think of my age now and the seriousness of my disease….and then bam, panic attack.  I have had them while watching my sons do something that I did back when I was their age and that sets them off.  There are other things that set them off as well…not a good feeling. 
I have started to try and exercise again, believe it or not.  Back when I was trying before was when the seizures would actually happen right after exercising.  That kind of makes you not want to do this.  Please pray for me that this does not start up again, I really do want to exercise and be healthy.  I have started out just walking, I doubt my knees can handle running, but we will see.  I am very proud of my wife who has become the best runner I know and has something to be proud of.  She has a great group of friends who she runs with and spends time with that have become like sisters to her.  Something she has never had before.  Thank you to them….you know who you are. 
Things have become much more routine and less urgent (Which I hate that feeling)  I really thought that by now God would have called me to something bigger than all of this.  However, God has placed me in a position to where I can make a difference.  This is no different than your life, He has just given me a different story to share while sharing His love.  I have had some opportunities where I thought did not turn out well, but only find out later it was quite the opposite.  I am so thankful that I am allowed to share with friends and acquaintances about God’s love and will do so till the day I die.
Something for you to think about.  We had the idea in our community group to go to a local grocery store and help people bag their groceries and unload them in their car, as well as treat the employees to lunch.  We gathered at the grocery store and had prayer first.  I then went in and asked to speak to the manager.  I told him what we would like to do and the first thing he said was that he would have to call the district manager to make sure it was ok to do.  After a few minutes he came back and said that we could not do it because they cannot accept gratuities.  I explained that we were not giving them money just lunch.  He said that that was not possible.  So I asked if we did not give them lunch could we do the rest .  He again said we could not help people bag groceries nor help them unload them at their car because it was not in their guidelines to do so.  We were banned from HELPING PEOPLE.  What has this world become when we are not allowed to do something nice for people because it is not in the “playbook”  We need to show the world they are reading out of the wrong playbook and show them the one and only playbook that God has given us.  Find opportunities to be nice to others for no reason.  Buy them lunch, mow their grass when they are on vacation, bring them dinner for no reason (Or invite them to dinner) Share God’s love.

Monday, April 15, 2013

It has been a while....but here is an update

It has been a rough few weeks.  I have had seizures on a consistent basis.  On average one every other day, but sometimes it has been one a day or sometimes two a day.  It doesn’t hurt, and I can typically feel them coming, it is just so darn frustrating, especially when it is multiple in one day.  I really can’t figure out why they have increased so much.  I am not doing anything different and most of the time I can’t associate them with stress.  Maybe God is trying to tell me to slow it down some.  I know I haven’t written lately, but for some reason I keep getting busier and busier.  Also, Kara has been doing quite a few races over the last few months.  I have been so proud of her, she is accomplishing a lot that most of us would not even attempt.  She ran a Marathon in January in Charleston SC, she has run a few 5Ks over the last few months, but the proudest I have been of her is the fact that she did two half marathons in two days.  After the first one in Greensboro on a Saturday, we went to Raleigh that afternoon and spent the night due to the Raleigh Rocks ½ was starting at 7:30 Sunday morning.  That night she was tired and achy because of the run that morning and she was scared that she might not finish.  I told her that she will feel better in the morning and will do fine.  Well, not only did she do fine but she set a new Personal Record for a 1/2 marathon (13.1 miles to us that do not run) and came in 3rd place for her age group.  When she crossed the finish line, she hugged me and said that she does this because she believes that every mile she runs will in turn add another year to my life.  So as many miles as she does run, I will outlive pretty much all of you combined. 
This weekend is going to be an exciting weekend for my family.  We will be attending for the first time the Angels among Us walk/run.  This is put on every year to raise money for the Preston R Tisch Brain Tumor Clinic at Duke Hospital where I go for treatment.  What is especially good news is that the money that is raised goes to research at the facility to find new ways to treat Brain Tumors.  So basically the money goes to find new ways to stop or eliminate tumors such as the one I have.  They will have a group of survivors (Ones that have not yet died from a brain tumor ….such as me) that will be recognized.  Also, there will be some researchers that will speak and update everyone on the upcoming treatments that they and others are working on to fight the battle against brain tumors.  I am so happy that I will have a fellow survivor Jennifer Hutchens to walk with me.  She was diagnosed last year with a Brain tumor and had it removed.  This was our first year raising money for the event and I set a goal of $10,000 dollars.  Right now we have just over $3000.00 I would love for you to join with me and fight my killer by giving money to research.  It is a tax-deductible contribution and you will receive an email you can use when you file your taxes next year.  The deadline for online contributions I believe is by the end of day Wednesday.  If you can only give $5.00 then please just do that.  If you are blessed enough to be able to give $5000.00 then I pray you will do that.  You would not be helping just me, and I would not be asking for you to do it if it were just me.  You will be helping thousands of people each year that are diagnosed with this deadly killer. 
You can donate by clicking on this link:
Thank you! 

Friday, February 8, 2013


It is very hard to write something for the blog this month.  This month is the anniversary of the start of this new path in life that the Lord has given me.  February 17 is the first anniversary, this is the first day last year that I started having symptoms, February 24 is the next anniversary, it is the day that my life changed forever.  February 24 I was given the diagnosis of having a brain tumor.   With that in mind this month has started out horribly.  I have had some of the same feelings that I had back then already this month.  There have been the panic attacks, and nights where the sun setting has made me cry.  There are times in the morning and coming home from work where I have cried in both directions, listening to the songs that I listened to last year to get me through those times.  These are things I would have never expected to happen this year.  It is just like finding out again.  I can only take this as a reminder that the same God that got me through that dark time, will get me through this one.
                Looking back over this past year, I have had some really great friends to be there for my family and I really appreciate them taking the time to do so.  I have sat down and shared supper with them, I have sat down and have them pray for me, and then just have them come up and hug me and tell me they love me at just the right time.  Thank you so much.  Funny thing is, these are not even the people that I thought would be the ones to do that.   The ones I would have thought would be there were not found.  That has been hard to deal with. 
                The Lord has also given me a view of my life in a way I did not like.  I was a bench sitter for so long in sharing His son with others.  He showed me that and now I take every opportunity I can to share the love of Christ.  As I have said so many times here, I hope that you learn from what He has done in my life to make sure  you are where you are supposed to be in your walk with the Lord, and doing the things for Him that really matter.  We are not placed here to seek things for self for your entire life then die and that is it.  There is so much more to life if you allow the Lord to open your eyes to it.
                Finally, I want to thank each person that has prayed for my family and me.  There are many times that I could literally feel that I was being prayed for.  We recently had a lesson in our community group on praying for others.  Our society will say “I’m praying for you” just like you say “How are you doing?” we need to just not say these things, but follow up with what we say.  We committed to pray for another couple in our community group for at least a month.  This was a verbal commitment to the other couple while looking at them in the eyes and after talking with each other about things that need prayer.   We also were to contact each other over the course of the month and to let them know we are praying for their specific needs.  The reason I shared this is that when we pray for others, especially those that have a terminal illness, we also should contact them and let them know we are praying for them.  Better yet, go to their house and pray with them, or at least do it on the phone.  People need the touch of others, and prayer together is a great way to do this. 
                I want anyone that reads this to know….I love you.  The Lord also loves you.  If I can ever pray with you, please let me know.  If you have questions about the Lord, or what being a Christian is about, I would love to talk to you about this.  I can tell you this…..if it were not for my faith in the Lord, my life would have ended on February 24, 2012.  Instead, my life amazingly got better.  Yes I have bad days, so does everyone….yes I fail every day at trying to live like Christ…..but so do all Christians.  It is not the works that make us Christians,  being a Christian makes us want to do the works.
You can always contact me at gregelmore1212 at  Let me show you how you can have the hope that I have….even in a hopeless position.