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Connecting With Family

This past week I was at a family reunion that was planned for over a year. I connected with family that I haven’t seen in a while, and some of them I meet for the first time. I connected most to my Uncle and Aunt from South Carolina.

While I was in South Carolina, I spent most of my time at my aunt and uncle’s house. I got to speak to them separately, one-on-one and found out interesting things about them individually. I first talked to my uncle and we were talking about his business and how he started it from scratch. I was picking his brain about how he got started and the process he had to grow through in order to become successful.

Once he finished giving me great advice and information about how he started his business. I told him I am in the process of starting my own business. I told him I’m pursuing to be an inspirational speaker. I told him that I want to speak about my adversities of becoming a two time cancer survivor.

I also said that I have a website, business cards, looking to volunteer at Loma Linda Hospital and looking to join a public speaking club called Toastmasters. I showed him my PowerPoint on my Amazon fire tablet and he thought it was great. He said it was good that I want to help others who are or were in my same situation.

When I talked to my aunt, she asked me how I was doing and how I dealt with my situation of having cancer and becoming a hip amputee. When I started talking to her I began to open up to her because she had breast cancer, and her brother had cancer.

I was telling her that when I had cancer, I was young and didn’t understand how serious it was. I explained that I knew I had a serious illness, but I knew I wasn’t going to die. At the time, all I wanted to do was be like the rest of my classmates and enter the 9th grade.

I told her that I’m pursuing to be an inspirational speaker. I showed her my PowerPoint and she was really impressed. She liked how I was able to capture myself during that difficult time.

There were somethings that she didn’t know that I've been through. For instance, she didn’t know I had Stage IV cancer the second time it came back and she didn’t know I had lung cancer. I told her I didn’t know how serious lung cancer was until I made my PowerPoint.

From my research from the American Cancer Society, I told her lung cancer accounts for more deaths than any other cancer in both men and women. I said an estimated 158,040 deaths, which is about 27% of all cancer deaths are expected to happen this year in 2015.

There was a slide that really caught her attention which was titled, “Mind Over Matter…” I remember she looked at the slide, then paused and said. “Wow Darryl that is so true, Mind Over Matter.” Then we talked about our experiences about beating cancer, and how a positive mind can help overcome adversities.

Towards the end of the PowerPoint, the slides are about inFAMOUS and how the video game influenced me. I remember when that slide came up she said, “Who is Cole?” I explained to her that Cole is a video game character that I connected with because I feel our stories are similar. I told her the way Cole dealt with his adversities is the same way that I dealt with mine.

At the end of the PowerPoint, my aunt looked at me and said “You are really invested in this ha” I told her yes, and explained that I didn’t choose to do this, it chose me.

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