The Mind Goes Numb and then You Fight Back
A Dragon Stretches its Claws - Bagua Fighting Applications

The Road Back -- Dodging a Bullet

I went to practice with some students last night. My breathing has gotten worse, and after doing a few movements I had to stop and catch my breath. I began to get alarmed. I got home and coughed until 1 a.m. with a feeling that there was something in my lungs I couldn't get out.

Today I badgered the pulmonologist's office for results of the PET scan and the biopsy-type scrapings that he made during the scoping procedure when he said he found a very small bloody tumor.

This evening the doctor called and said the PET scan showed no evidence of a tumor or a malignancy, and the pathology report showed no evidence of either.

Something is causing bleeding in my left lung, and when he did the scope he thought it was a small tumor. He says he was mistaken.

Thank you sir, may I have another? Sheesh!!!

To try and stop the bleeding and begin healing, I was told to stop talking (I cough a lot more when I talk), rest my body for a week, and take robitussin with codeine to calm the lungs. I'll get another chest X-ray on Thursday, meet with him on Friday and plot the next step. He may do another scope procedure to try and find out where the tearing is that is causing the bleeding. My cardio conditioning has gotten worse very likely from the bleeding, and possibly from some blood in the lungs.

Nancy came home and I whispered and wrote out the news. We celebrated and I had her call my daughters, oldest sister, and my best friend Ed back in Kentucky.

Since I had atrial fibrillation last year, and made the decision to undergo three heart surgeries to fix it, my goal has been to get back in top shape. The pneumonia that hit me after the third heart surgery has been the hardest thing I've had to deal with -- much harder than the surgeries. I was wondering during the past week if I would reach my goal of getting back in shape.

Now, there's no doubt. I just need to shut the hell up for a few days, do my communicating through emails, and avoid doing anything that is strenuous enough to trigger a coughing spell. I think I can handle it.

I was looking forward to doing some good strong Chen tai chi forms in three tournaments in March. Those plans have been discarded. I'll have to make my comeback later in the year. But that's okay with me. After I got off the phone with the doctor this evening, it felt as if I had already made my comeback.

Comments

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Evan

That's great news! Get some rest... we'll hear from ya soon!

Gary Liu

Hey Ken. Sorry to hear of your constant battle with health. It is inspiring to see your mental fortitude. Rest well and I look forward to seeing more of your blog and progress. Take care.

Sean C. Ledig

Hey Ken,

Do us and yourself a favor and shut the hell up for a few days.(LOL)

Take care of yourself.

Sean

anneke

What good news that there isn't a tumor after all!Now all you can do is take this week rest and remain silent.Lucky enough you can be as loud as you want in emails.This way your lungs will have the opportunity to heal quickly, Anneke.

Harmony Star

My daddy, er, I mean, Ken, is so wonderful and amazing! Yay!

Love,
Harmony

P.S. They say whispering is harder on your vocal chords than speaking. So really, shut the heck up! Just kidding...;))

Ken Gullette

What? You can't say shut the heck up to yo' daddy. You're grounded!!! I mean, thanks for the kind words, but I think you're biased.

For other readers, a point of explanation -- when we brought Harmony home from the maternity ward, there were Bruce Lee posters up on the wall of her bedroom. They stayed up, and when she was old enough to talk, I would point to one of the posters and say, "Who's that?" She would reply, "DADDY!" :)) Later, she studied kung-fu (and won a tournament sparring boys and girls) and she has studied Jeet Kune Do and has a photo being kissed on the cheek by one of Bruce Lee's original students, Richard Bustillo. It's enough to make a father proud.

jim criscimagna

Great news Ken! :))

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