Wednesday, December 22, 2010

The Greer Citizen

Just in case you don't get the Greer Citizen, here is a great story Krista Gibson wrote about Tim and his awesome spirit. Tim and Krista used to play softball together for First Team Sports and this past summer he coached her son in baseball. The ball has started rolling on some other really amazing things as well, as soon as they are a little more concrete we will be sharing on here. Our goal of spreading awareness about colon cancer so no one else will have to endure this journey is becoming a reality and we couldn't be more excited!

12/22/2010 2:15:00 PM
All is merry and Bright while cancer is put aside
Hope
Staying busy: Tim and Jenny Bright recently attended the SEC championship game in Atlanta.
Staying busy: Tim and Jenny Bright recently attended the SEC championship game in Atlanta.

Krista Gibson
Staff Reporter


Tim and Jenny Bright got married last April three months after Tim found out he had colon cancer and one month after surgery to remove a foot of his colon that held a quarter-sized tumor.

It has not been the type of year most newlyweds experience, but the couple has vowed that their first Christmas as a married couple, will be no different than the ones they’ve spent together in the past. They will be surrounded by family and will put off the next chapter in his cancer story until the first week in January.

“I told Jenny I don’t want to do anything differently than I have in the past,” Tim said.
“We will spend Christmas Eve and morning with her parents and Christmas afternoon and night with my folks like we’ve done the other years.”

Tim, 28, a commercial real estate broker with Bentley Commercial, is a former standout Riverside High pitcher who graduated in 2001 and went on to be a part of the University of South Carolina baseball team until arm injuries sidelined him. Today, he coaches high school pitchers on summer travel teams.

He was given a clean bill of health in August after 12 weeks of chemotherapy treatments.
By November, though, some of the numbers in his blood work were elevated and he was scheduled for another battery of tests. The cancer was back, metastasized to his lungs.

“We found out the 29th of November,” Jenny said. She remembers the dates of all the diagnosis and treatments.

Tim said he knew something was wrong when his oncologist didn’t call him back within a few days of his tests. His doctor later confessed he had found out right before he left town for the Thanksgiving holidays. The nodules on his lungs are small but will have to be treated with more chemotherapy.

Tim said it will have to wait until after Christmas.

“This is our first Christmas and basically we don’t know how many more Christmases we will get to have without chemo,” Jenny said.

“It will be kind of nice to have a Christmas when I’m not on chemo,” Tim said.

They have been told there is no cure, but that there is a small chance this next round of treatment could knock everything out. If not, it may be contained enough so that it doesn’t spread before the next round.

“If it has to be on six months, off six months, on six months until we find something that’s a cure, that’s fine with me. I can live with that. I don’t plan on going anywhere any time soon,” Tim said.

“We’re focusing on it now as not trying to get rid of the cancer, but trying to keep him going for as long as possible until a cure comes along,” Jenny said.

There is one bright light from the past year that has thankfully kept the spotlight away from Tim and he is grateful for that. His brother Steven and wife Haley had a daughter, Lillian. “I don’t really like having all the focus on me,” he said.

“She has no idea what’s going on so she treats him the exact same way she always has,” Jenny said. “Little kids are great that way.”

The support from his family, friends and employers has been humbling. And if you see Tim and Jenny around town during the holidays, it will probably be the two of them that give you a lift, because they vow not to let cancer, something they have no control over and is out of their hands, take anything away from their first Christmas.

kgibson@greercitizen.com | 877-2076
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