Good Catch

06.9.2009 | 10:03 am

Around 3am this morning, Susan woke me and told me to get her a bowl — her stomach felt weird.

Around 4, she started throwing up. By 4:15 I had changed the bowl three times.

I have a few observations to make after this event:

  • Evidently the new medication Susan started last night has some unfortunate side effects. The truth is, with the volume and variety of medication Susan is on right now, it’s amazing that she hasn’t mutated into a lizard-person.
  • I would really like whoever is in charge of everything to note that Susan has put up with enough for a while, and she could really stand to be given a break.
  • I could use a break, too. I am a whole new kind of exhausted.
  • Even bedridden, even with a broken collarbone, even sick as can be, Susan was still apologizing to me the whole time this was going on. That’s who she is.
  • Susan was an excellent shot and I hardly had to do any cleanup at all. I’m really glad of that; I have no idea of how I would have cleaned her up in her current state. Yeah, I know: necessity is the mother of invention. But at 4am, it’s also the mother of breakdowns.


  1. Comment by Chris | 06.9.2009 | 10:14 am

    Darn! Enough already! [shaking fist at "whoever is in charge of everything"] I think about you two all the time. I’m sorry it was a rough night and I’m glad Susan’s a good shot. I’m not surprised [that she's a good shot - she's awesome]. Blessings, Chris

  2. Comment by tyler | 06.9.2009 | 10:15 am

    I speak for everyone — sending good thoughts your way. And I’ll speak to the one in charge – I know somebody who can get me in.

  3. Comment by Annie | 06.9.2009 | 10:19 am

    I hope Susan’s feeling better by now … and that perhaps there’s a similar medication without these miserable side effects??

    I know you’re blessed to have Susan, and Susan is sure blessed to have you.

  4. Comment by Rantwick | 06.9.2009 | 10:25 am

    I want to thank you for updating us on the rough stuff as well as the good stuff; I join the others in fist shaking and good vibe sending.

    “it’s amazing that she hasn’t mutated into a lizard-person” – You also rock for finding something funny to say despite yourself.

  5. Comment by bikemike | 06.9.2009 | 10:27 am

    i am humbled before you.

  6. Comment by scrod | 06.9.2009 | 10:28 am

    Keep, your head up, dude we are all pulling for you and your wife. Oh wait, keep your head up is bad advice if you are currently holding a bowl. In that event you want to make sure it is in the right position.

    I will put a word in with the man in charge.

  7. Comment by Angie G | 06.9.2009 | 10:29 am

    I agree you both have had enough. The saying you can’t have rainbows with a little rain doesn’t offer much solice when you’re in the middle of a hurricane.

    I never seem to understand why such terrible things have to happen to such amazing people. That is my one question for the big guy. What the heck! There are so many people out there more deserving of all this crap than you and Susan!

    Be strong and know we are all out here trying to take as much as we can for you both.

    WIN SUSAN!!!

  8. Comment by bobbieh | 06.9.2009 | 10:35 am

    Sending hugs and calm tummy thoughts to the both of you ~~~

  9. Comment by Michelle | 06.9.2009 | 10:48 am

    Praying for you both. Hold on Elden! It’s not easy in fact it seems impossible, but hold on. Susan I hope that you get relief soon and the doctors can come up with something different that won’t leave you in this place.

  10. Comment by db | 06.9.2009 | 10:49 am

    Strength and comfort to both of you.

  11. Comment by Todd | 06.9.2009 | 10:52 am

    I’m keeping you and Susan and the rest of the family in my prayers Fatty!

  12. Comment by Jamieson | 06.9.2009 | 11:04 am

    And the doctor will prescribe more anti-nausea medications to you.

    My heart and prayers go out to you and Susan.

  13. Comment by Pat in Oak Ridge | 06.9.2009 | 11:13 am

    So sorry this is happening to you.

  14. Comment by GenghisKhan | 06.9.2009 | 11:30 am

    Sorry-thoughts and prayers, thoughts and prayers.

  15. Comment by VA Biker | 06.9.2009 | 11:38 am

    Elden, you and Susan and your family continue to be at the fore of my thoughts and in my prayers.

  16. Comment by rexinsea | 06.9.2009 | 11:51 am

    More thoughts and prayers. I hope you can find comfort and rest soon.

  17. Comment by DOLPH74 | 06.9.2009 | 12:01 pm

    You are a legend.

    Never give up Fatty.

  18. Comment by Kathy | 06.9.2009 | 12:02 pm

    In my nursing experience, a towel can effectively catch a lot. It works great for folks in bed whether as a primary action, or as a stop gap measure between bowl rinses. You are all in my prayers.

  19. Comment by jilrubia | 06.9.2009 | 12:09 pm

    Your situation cleary shows that even in the ugly haze of all the stress and pain and other nastiness, there is love. Humor, comfort and care, even super scary bike rides reveal the important things in life. Love is IT, and you’ve got it man. Thanks for sharing.

    Wishing you-super human energy and Susan-comfort.

  20. Comment by Clydesteve | 06.9.2009 | 12:10 pm

    You two give me a whole new perspective of suffering with grace.

    I know you have had enough, but thanks for the life lesson. I am humbled.

    And still praying at 2:01 PDT

  21. Comment by Kali Durga | 06.9.2009 | 12:20 pm

    I don’t even know what to say anymore, Elden, even though I read every post. I guess everyone else here has said whatever I’d be able to think of in the face of what you’re dealing with. You, Susan, and your kids are in my thoughts.

  22. Comment by USAFANARC | 06.9.2009 | 1:07 pm

    Fatty, you are a saint. I really feel for you and can’t imagine what you and Susan are going through. I don’t know if I could handle this as well as you have. Maybe the anger would have worn off by now, but it would be hard for me not to yell curse words at every diety known to man if I were in your situation. It’s just not right and I’m deeply sorry.

    On a better note, I’m only $10 away from my $1000 goal for Seattle and it is because of you and Susan that I’ve become involved. Thank you for that.

  23. Comment by Kati | 06.9.2009 | 1:08 pm

    Sending good thoughts your way. I wish you all the best.

  24. Comment by BuzzLiteBoy | 06.9.2009 | 1:11 pm

    I am amazed at your constant willingness to bring all of us along on this journey. My heart goes out to all of you, you are constantly in my thoughts and prayers. Thanks for be able to share this with us.

  25. Comment by Tracy (Oklahoma) | 06.9.2009 | 1:23 pm

    God Bless her and you! Sorry you both have to go through this. Will be praying for you in Oklahoma.

  26. Comment by Chris | 06.9.2009 | 1:38 pm

    Be strong!

  27. Comment by nickc | 06.9.2009 | 1:52 pm

    Bucking the trend somewhat, in a kind of weird way, throwing up, actually managing to lean over, take aim, puke and apologise…that’s kind of regular (just pretend it’s Saturday night, and you’ve been knocking them back all night, and laughing, and goofing around, and dancing)… There are worse alternatives.

    You know?

    Win Susan….

  28. Comment by Tim D | 06.9.2009 | 1:55 pm

    Thank you for reminding me that actually I had a very good day today.

    Keep strong, you are in our thoughts

  29. Comment by Dan J | 06.9.2009 | 2:05 pm

    I don’t know you and only started reading your blog because of your riding anecdotes, et al.

    But the stories of your family’s struggle and strength move me and I thank you for sharing something so human.

  30. Comment by Lisa B | 06.9.2009 | 2:19 pm

    Elden – It is only the very best of husbands who help and comfort their wives when their wives are throwing up. I always knew you were one of the best, as did Susan. You just keep proving it over and over.

  31. Comment by Lisa B | 06.9.2009 | 2:20 pm

    P.S. You are, indeed, a “good catch” for Susan!

  32. Comment by Kt | 06.9.2009 | 2:45 pm

    Good vibes heading your way– still– and more and more.

    My partner’s grandmother was recently daignosed with ovarian cancer in her stomach– at 85, she just had her first chemo treatment and she’s fighting this thing hard.

    Thanks for inspiring people, Fatty, and Susan especially. Keep your chin up (except when aiming), keep smiling.

  33. Comment by Charisa | 06.9.2009 | 3:02 pm

    Hope both of you can get a break and some rest!

  34. Comment by mhb | 06.9.2009 | 3:25 pm

    Your marriage is such an example. I have to agree with Lisa B above. With my hubs, I thought it was love… until he held my hair back when I was throwing up in his grandmother’s flower bed from food poisoning (note: not Grandma’s fault). THAT is true love.

    All the same, you two deserve a full night’s sleep. Thoughts and prayers for the both of you and your kids.

  35. Comment by Jenni | 06.9.2009 | 3:26 pm

    Someday people will look back at stories like this and say, “I can’t believe people were expected to endure that,” because treatments will be more effective with fewer (or no!) side effects, and a cure for cancer will be found. I have thought about going back to school at 41 to a 6 year program that will result in me being a cancer researcher, but I have every reason in the book not to (can’t afford it being top of the list – you know, that whole homeless and starving excuse). But when I hear things like this time and time again, I want so desperately to DO something – to be part of the solution!
    You and your family have all been through enough. ENOUGH!
    WIN Susan!

  36. Comment by buckythedonkey | 06.9.2009 | 4:01 pm

    Good on you Fatty, you are a giant. Hope you both get some sleep. Keep fighting, mate.


  37. Comment by Jennebelle | 06.9.2009 | 4:13 pm

    I am waiting to find out if I have cancer or not. If so, I hope my husband will be as amazing as you!

    Bless your family and I pray for you all!

    WIN Susan!

  38. Comment by sansauto | 06.9.2009 | 5:16 pm

    You’re in our thoughts and prayers.

  39. Comment by jenjen | 06.9.2009 | 5:37 pm

    I hope Susan is feeling better now. You are all in my prayers every day.


  40. Comment by LindaLoo | 06.9.2009 | 6:28 pm

    Aw Susan…. I am in awe of you, you are a symbol of strengh and courage. I’m so sorry you have to put up with this.
    Continue to WIN!
    P.S. Jennebelle I’ve added you to my prayer list.

  41. Comment by WheelDancer | 06.9.2009 | 7:46 pm

    Keep up the good work Eldon. As tough as it is, I know it’s good to be able to help in some small way because I spent many hours years ago at my brother’s deathbed in the ICU and could offer him nothing though I like to think that being there helped him in some small way. Susan is lucky to have you and, even as painful as it is, I’m glad you can help her out.

    Win Susan, Win Eldon!

  42. Comment by spa | 06.9.2009 | 9:50 pm

    Thank you very much for taking/making the time to write, to share the details. You don’t know me, but I’m thinking about you and Susan all the time.

    I wish I could help you hold that bowl. All the best from NY.

    Win Susan! Win Eldon!

  43. Comment by mateo | 06.9.2009 | 10:10 pm

    i rode in my “Susan” jersey today…believe me you were both in my thoughts, and judging by my performance today, either you or dug could have handed my ass to me. keep up the stories, i look forward to your keeping us all part of your amazing journey.

  44. Comment by MattC | 06.9.2009 | 10:44 pm

    Fatty, you are inspiring beyond words. Rest assured you have an ARMY praying for you both. Strength comes in many forms, and you and Susan both are off the charts in every measurable way. Like everybody here, I wonder what I can do to help. Your strength gives me motivation to do more, and I can only hope I do my part.

    Get some rest, take a break. ClydeSteve seems to have Seattle WELL in hand (and speaking of ClydeSteve, maybe NEXT year we should establish a new fundraising rule: NO kidnapping children for ransom. I have it on good faith that’s what he’s been’s the only possible way to get THAT much $$! OK…OK..just kidding. But come-on! How about after 5 grand you open a NEW page under another name? You could show up at the pasta feed and have your own table for crying out loud, wearing like 6 nametags. Or even better…open pages in all 4 cities…you know…get yourself invited to all 4 pasta feeds, get 4 LiveStrong jerseys….and maybe the rest of us won’t feel like such slackers cuz we won’t know it’s all you! Sheesh…I couldn’t even sell my CAR and catch up with you. You are truly the Yoda of fundraising my friend. Just glad you’re on our side!


  45. Comment by Little1 | 06.10.2009 | 12:11 am


    2:01 CAT (Central African Time)

    I have no words only prayers.

  46. Comment by william | 06.10.2009 | 1:09 am

    You’re doing a fantastic job. Just keep going and keep your chin up.

  47. Comment by Pinkbike | 06.10.2009 | 1:38 am

    F#$^ cancer.

    And take comfort in all the prayers and good thoughts being sent your way.

    And Fatty, you are a saint. My beau held the pan for me as I lost it after my umpteenth surgery, and was so kind during chemo, etc. etc. It’s what you do for someone you love. Life can be pretty tough for the caregivers, though. Hang in there…

    and lots of love to Sister Susan.

  48. Comment by Saso | 06.10.2009 | 2:00 am

    You and Susan are an inspiration. All the best in the rough times.

  49. Comment by Hamish A | 06.10.2009 | 4:38 am

    Nothing I can possibly say aside from you two are absolutely incredible.

    Thanks for continuing to let us share in everything both good and bad. You’re both an example to us all of strength, grace and love.

    Prayers, and positive thoughts coming your way as always.

    WIN Susan! Stay strong Elden.

    P.S. Jennabelle – prayers and positive thoughts coming your way too.

  50. Comment by pammap | 06.10.2009 | 4:54 am

    You and Susan are in my thoughts and prayers. Jennabelle, you too.

  51. Comment by lady clay | 06.10.2009 | 5:37 am

    Poor Susan. Poor Fatty. I’ll be thinking of both of you.

  52. Comment by gus | 06.10.2009 | 5:50 am

    Fattie Dude, if you are not a Saint you will be. You rate up there with my Aunt who adopted her Grandson with Cerebral Palsy.

  53. Comment by BamaJim | 06.10.2009 | 6:12 am

    Continued prayers for you. 2:01 CDT (and other times)

  54. Comment by Janneke | 06.10.2009 | 7:33 am

    Aw you guys, I Wish I could fly over and take some of the burden for a while so you could rest. This makes me so sad, and so tremendously in awe of who you are, even tough I dont know you at all. I’m thinking of you and almost feel guilty to be going on holiday. hang in there!!

  55. Comment by Gina F | 06.10.2009 | 8:01 am

    My most heartfelt prayers are with you and your family. I wish there was something more I could do from this distance.

  56. Comment by Kathleen@ForgingAhead | 06.10.2009 | 10:21 am

    Big virtual hug coming your way from San Francisco.

  57. Comment by Marianne | 06.10.2009 | 2:46 pm

    Keeping you and your family in our thoughts.

  58. Comment by brenda bowens | 06.10.2009 | 9:40 pm

    I thought I was the only one going through the heaves. Never know when my son who has CP is going to keep down what goes in. I know its hard to stay strong but the fight goes on. My family and church are praying for you.

  59. Comment by PennyPue | 06.11.2009 | 7:16 am

    Now that is True Love.

    Wishing and Praying for a nice night’s sleep for both of you.

  60. Comment by California Bike | 06.11.2009 | 9:53 am

    Ok, I’m behind on your blog right now and normally wouldn’t comment 2 days after the post was posted, but this is an exception to that rule. WIN SUSAN! I know that a lot of what she’s going through is awful, but puking holds a special place of hatedness in my heart so I’m really feeling for her today.

    Your blog brings me joy and I pray for you and your beautiful family.

  61. Comment by Shiny Flu | 06.11.2009 | 3:19 pm

    If any one deserves anything good in the world, it’s you and Susan.

    You are doing a great job.

  62. Comment by m00se | 06.11.2009 | 3:58 pm

    Keep strong, man. Thoughts are with you!

  63. Comment by Bob Overstreet | 06.14.2009 | 3:45 pm

    We were thinking of you both today! We just got in our new Fatty cycling gear this week, so we wore it out on our ride, explaining to anyone that was interested what it was all about, and who we were supporting.

    There’s a couple of pics in our blog post of us sporting our new Fatty attire.


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