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Need a Crutch?

Walking With the Bakers


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Welcome, and fasten your seat belt...

Written by Roger Baker.


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Hi everyone! First, to those many people who sent get-well cards, made phone calls, stopped by the hospital, cared for the kids in dozens of ways, thank you. There aren't sufficient words to say how grateful I am. You guys really rescued our family. I am intensely grateful, and I am still writing thank-you notes. If you haven't received yours, I apologize. I am trying to respond to all.

The articles on here are going to detail what the next several months will be like in the Baker household and also specifically with me. Frankly, the departure talk from the surgeon when I was discharged from Walter Reed/Bethesda was neither cheery nor positive. Sue & I were given time to vent with one another and then basically two weeks off while we adjusted our heads around my new lifetime possibilities.

I want to be frank. First, if you cannot keep this to yourself, please don't read any further. This isn't for sharing with your children. When time is right, only then will we share with our children the threat their father is facing. But the timing isn't right yet. They don't need to have many months of dread or fear (or eagerness, either!) Please just keep this web site to yourself, okay?

Just so you know, I had a brain tumor of the most dangerous type. The surgeon who did the work predicted 18 months of survivability. Not too bad, not too good either.  Thank God I have kept up my insurance and associated investments, sure, but who wants to collect? The surgeon at the National Institute of health who is now my lead physician is much more optimistic. He has one patient who currently holds the nasty brain cancer record at 10 years. So 18 months and 10 years are currently the boundary lines. On the positive side, the boundaries are growing. On the negative side, in ten years I will only be 60. I'd like more.

So all of the things you will read herein are going to be direct, forthwith, and often absolute. Sue is very good at transmitting medical information. My focus is on two other planes: religious and financial. The latter case I may give you some details, but thank God, if I should pass quickly, the family is set. We have had whole life insurance for many years. I suspect Sue will pay-off the house (it's a great investment) and we generally don't carry much in other bills (we're a cash family.) The religious plane is different. If you don't want the occasional, deep religious question or thought, read Sue instead.

I also plan to tell you about the funny things that happen during treatment (I start chemo and radiology April 10th.) I have had some good laughs, and the folks working with the truly ill keep a sense of humor and try to make things pleasant. So I will clue you in on the humorous stuff.

Finally, I am in a difficult relationship with the United Methodist Church. It is difficult because I am still a pastor, I am still assigned to a church, and as the treatments increase the challenge, I can't serve as much or as well. Of course, I have multiple sclerosis (waaayyyy down on the list these days) and that has kept me to less than 1/4-time service. Nonetheless, I have an obligation to others. Resolving this is one of my life challenges.

You'll hear family stuff, too. 'Nuff said, right?