17 March 2020: OK, I admit I have a deep desire to reclaim physical fitness and get back to work after radical prostatectomy. The idea of “normal life” has a great pull on me. In this moment I’m celebrating small wins at work, out running, and in the bedroom.

Getting back to work in a time of coronavirus

back at work with poster for coronavirus precautions

Long before either the pandemic or my cancer diagnosis, we had scheduled a wonderful in-person ORSC systemic team coach training course in Johannesburg. We have participants coming from all across Africa. I had a big ambition to somehow co-deliver this with my wonderful colleague Ron Ndlovu in spite of my surgery. Yesterday it happened thanks to his wonderful support and co-leadership!

We had to research and make up antivirus precautions. This whole coronavirus thing is new for everybody. I also designed with my co-leader that “when I gotta go, I gotta go.” With him sharing the leadership, in spite of post-surgery incontinence I can run to the loo at a moment’s notice throughout the day.

Maybe this is mad. There is a part of me that is deeply satisfied by pushing to get up and out to work less than 3 weeks after radical prostatectomy. It doesn’t do away with the dark nights, but I revel in the action. My colleague’s advice to “take it easy” is ringing in my ears even as I ignore it.

Getting back to parkrun

Since 2013 my wife and I have been loving our Saturday morning parkrun/parkwalk ritual. I was so proud to walk the 5 km course already on Day 9 after surgery, and two days ago I managed to run most of the way! It feels like a way to get back to normal. I am convinced that the exercise advances the process of clearing anaesthetic and other drugs from my system.

celebrating 5 km parkrun completion


Hopeful signs in the bedroom

They warned me that erectile dysfunction was a very common outcome after prostate treatment. It is happening to me some of the time and I am worried. My good feelings are hugely enhanced by some signs of life down there, and my wife saying “let’s put it to good use while it’s on the rise.”