Ringing the Bell!
We’re humbled to kick off our Don’t Quit! Family blog with an inspiring story that hits close to home. The father of a Don’t Quit! team member, Jim Field faced what nearly 40% of men and women will face in a lifetime – Cancer. Armed with a Don’t Quit! fighting spirit, family by his side, and an incredible health care staff, Jim beat the odds.
This is the story of courage, perseverance, and family. This is the story of facing the darkness and experiencing the light. This is the story of Jim, aka, The Survivor.
We hope Jim’s story fuels the fight in you! Enjoy.
DON’T QUIT! FAMILY - MEMBER SNAPSHOT
Name: Jim Field, aka, The Survivor
Age: 72 years-old
Hometown: Los Angeles, CA
Favorite Hobby: Golf
Don’t Quit! moment: Ringing the bell for my last cancer treatment
Jim’s Story: Ringing the Bell!
I grew up in LA doing anything and everything a kid could want to do. I was an all-around athlete playing little league baseball, swimming, handball, and eventually made my college football team. After graduating college, I went to work for my dad at the Field company; a small clothing manufacturer that mostly made hats. We grew the business exponentially over the next several decades. I would eventually go on to get married, have two beautiful children and even two grandchildren. But 4 years ago, I was diagnosed with aggressive stage 3 throat cancer. It was a crushing blow. Treatment options varied and the doctors worked hard to figure out the best way to move forward. Questions swirled. What would give me the best chance for survival? Would I make it through? What will happen to my family? All of this was unnerving. But I knew I had to stay positive and strong.
Months of chemo and aggressive radiation were prescribed, and my body felt the crippling effects immediately. After only 4 weeks of chemo, my immune system went down to zero and my body began to shut down. My wife rushed me to the hospital where I was stabilized but couldn’t leave. Chemo was discontinued but the radiation went on. My wife and children stayed by my side as the incredible healthcare staff of doctors and nurses tried to put me back together. I couldn’t eat. A feeding tube had to be surgically implanted into my stomach so that I could continue getting the nutrients I needed to stay alive. Due to my weakened state, I had to spend several days in the ICU. My hospital stay would continue on for almost a full month as my vitals and condition fluctuated day by day. Thankfully, my body began to recover. I just wanted to make it through the treatments. Whatever happened after that was out of anyone’s control. Right then and there, I knew I couldn’t quit. I had come too far. I had to see this through. If I could make it back from the depths of the ICU, I could get through these treatments. Then one day, it happened.
I walked in for my last session of radiation on my throat. It burned. I could barely speak and was still eating through a tube in my stomach. But I knew I was about to make it through. When I finished my session, the doctors took me over to a very special place in the hospital. The bell. When someone finally gets through their last radiation treatment, they get to ring the bell on the floor where they administer the radiation. It acts as a signal to others on the floor that someone else just like them didn’t quit, never gave up, and made it to the finish line. It brings hope to everyone fighting the good fight that they too can make it through. When I rang the bell, it was one of the greatest moments of my life. I’ve had the good fortune to be a successful CEO, father, and husband. But this moment signified a different kind of success. I proved to myself that I could weather the darkest storm I’d ever faced, and it set an example for my children and grandchildren that you must not quit.
Today, I play golf with my kids and I’m even teaching my granddaughters how to play. My wife and I continue to make memories and are enjoying our 35th year of marriage. Because of the throat cancer, my throat has some permanent atrophy which will never fully allow me to eat like I used to. But with an active lifestyle at 72, I still need to find a way to get all the protein, vitamins, minerals, and nutrients to do the things I want to do. Now with Don’t Quit!, I don’t have to worry about that. I pick up a bottle of Don’t Quit and get everything I need without all of the junk from other shakes on the market. I feel great and attack every day the way I want to. Whenever I pick up a bottle of Don’t Quit!, I know I’m making the right choice for my body. When I see those words, Don’t Quit!, it gives me perspective on what I went through, and reminds me to enjoy the precious moments I have with my family. I’m also a big sweets guy and I love how it curbs my sweet tooth.
Everyone out there is going through something tough. Thankfully I had my own family to help me through my tough times. Hopefully hearing my story will help others get through their tough times and will inspire everyone to share their Don’t Quit! moment too. #dontquitmoment #dontquitfam