My financial advisor and friend, Jeff Ross, has been talking to me about a dessert company in Seattle, our old hometown, where they urge customers to “eat dessert first.” Now, at 65, but still working vigorously, and—as you know—living with two cancers, CLL and myelofibrosis, I’ve been making this my golden rule.

We recently moved to San Diego by choice. We’re back from three years in Barcelona, Spain and wanted to be close to aging family members in Southern California and grown children on the West Coast. It’s expensive here! Rents are soaring, and home purchase prices are sky-high. But, nevertheless, we’ve decided this is the place for us. So…eating dessert first, we bit the bullet, and we decided to stretch financially to be just where we feel happiest. And why not? As a cancer diagnosis reminds us, we are mortal, and our expiration date could be sooner rather than later. We assume nothing. All we know is today we feel good. Today our “numbers” are okay. Today we have energy…or no pain…or fewer worries.

Thinking like this has made me even more of a risk-taker. For most of my life, things have worked out. I used to see it as luck. But maybe it’s more than that—not sure. Obviously, I was unlucky enough to be diagnosed with CLL and then, years later, with myelofibrosis. But isn’t it great that the FCR trial worked for me for so long with CLL, and a JAK2 inhibitor has been pretty effective for my with myelofibrosis? It’s enabled me to keep moving fast in our mission at Patient Power and in my personal life—eating dessert first, not skimping, saying yes to invitations a lot more than saying no.

In about two weeks, Esther and I will be in New York City for two successive town meetings with other patients and family members like ourselves: on May 14th for CLL, and on May 15th for MPNs. We will be thrilled to meet others in-person and virtually on live video, and we hope you can make it. If we are together, let’s “eat dessert first” and share stories of how we are living fully each day and not putting things off. It’s not to be reckless. Maybe it’s what really living is all about.

That’s my view. What’s yours?

Wishing you and your family the best of health!

Andrew