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Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by Dylan Skeean, Jan 11, 2019.

  1. Dylan Skeean

    Dylan Skeean

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2018
    Messages:
    73
    Location (City & State):
    Auburn, MA
    Hello fellow woodturners,

    As some of you know I have been woodturning for a very short period of time but completely fell in love with it. There is something very tranquil about turning a large, rough, chunk of wood into a soft edge platter or bowl, and all by hand with chisels!

    I spent 27 years of my life in a high volume production machine shop, the last 20 years as the lead programmer and supervisor in the CNC Milling department. I was also the IT guy and software support and resident trainer of our Cam software. We used Gibbscam and Mastercam for programming all the CNC equipment. After a 3 year battle with cancer and never missing a day of work through all my treatments, missing minimal time after each surgery I just kept coming back, because I loved making things. We were a Job Shop, which meant we would make anything and everything, so lots of designing and programming on the fly. We also prided ourselves on short lead times so that put even more pressure on me, but I had done it for so long it was second nature.

    Then as time went on, I would have trouble getting up one morning. Couldn't feel my hands or feet from all the chemo I had received. My insides were badly damaged from all the radiation I received, to keep this part short and not so gross. I would suffer from massive pains in the pelvis area and lots of blood. I would have days where I would drop my $300.00 digital caliper because I couldn't feel my hands. People would look, they knew I was struggling. I was starting to get overwhelmed with the workload, I could no longer concentrate and program as quickly as I could before cancer. I started making stupid mistakes, I couldn't stand on my feet for more than 2 hours at a time. I would get severe headaches and the spins. The days were getting rougher and rougher on me. I could now see my co-workers and ownership treating me differently. I knew my time was up, I was no longer making the company money, I would miss 3 days of work a week. I still had appointments that would consume most of my time.

    It became too much for me to handle and I had to make the hardest decision of my life, and stop doing something that I loved to do for a good part of my life. I started in that company as a saw operator and worked my way through the ranks. I miss it more and more every day. I always think about going back, but deep down inside, I know I can't. I'm 48 years old and had to give up everything I worked so hard for and now most days if I can get out of bed and bring in some firewood and play with the dogs for a couple hours, I'm doing well.

    The reason I'm writing this tonight is I'm sick again, my surgery is scheduled for January 29th. I've had several severe surgeries in my time and this one's a whopper. I'm hoping I make it off the table, and if I do, I have a 4 to 6 month recover ahead of me. Now I've been through these big ones before and you almost always end up with an abscess and infections, which adds to your recovery time and additional hospital stays. I will be missing from this forum for quite some time and I just didn't want you to think I was a fly by night kind of guy and he's gone now. I might be gone for a different reason, but I'll be back if I can.

    Over the last several months I have developed a love for wood turning and it has giving me a new purpose in life and a sense of craftsmanship again. I hope to be back up and running by the summer time and just wanted to thank all of you that helped me along the way, and even the ones that didn't help me directly, I learned from reading one of your posts. So I thank you all very much and wish you all good health and happy turning!

    Best Regards,
    Dylan
     
    John Fuda and Zach LaPerriere like this.
  2. Zach LaPerriere

    Zach LaPerriere

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2015
    Messages:
    598
    Location (City & State):
    Sitka, Alaska, United States
    Home Page:
    Good luck Dylan. I hope you're back in the shop soon.

    A turning friend went through heart surgery recently and recovered while making pens on his lathe. I don't know if this would be an option for you, but I wish you full health soon.
     
    Dylan Skeean likes this.
  3. hockenbery

    hockenbery AAW Advisor Staff Member

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2004
    Messages:
    6,697
    Location (City & State):
    Lakeland, Florida
    Home Page:
    Hope you have a speedy recovery.
     
    Dylan Skeean likes this.
  4. Ron Grob

    Ron Grob

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2018
    Messages:
    29
    Location (City & State):
    Springfield, VA
    Much Love Brother! Best of luck to you and the family while you recover from this. I'll be thinking of you and hoping for the best!
     
    Dylan Skeean likes this.
  5. Fadi Zeidan

    Fadi Zeidan

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2016
    Messages:
    469
    Location (City & State):
    San Antonio, TX
    Best of luck, hope to hear from you again in the near future. Stay positive, you can beat it again :)
     
    Dylan Skeean likes this.
  6. John Rander

    John Rander

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2018
    Messages:
    79
    Location (City & State):
    Milon La Chapelle France
    Good luck Dylan. I’ll be looking forward to seeing your posts again before summer!
     
    Dylan Skeean likes this.
  7. John Torchick

    John Torchick

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2010
    Messages:
    2,826
    Location (City & State):
    Cleveland, Tennessee
    A speedy recovery!!!
     
    Dylan Skeean likes this.
  8. Dylan Skeean

    Dylan Skeean

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2018
    Messages:
    73
    Location (City & State):
    Auburn, MA
    Thank you to all of you for the well wishes, I truly appreciate it. I'm down to 5 days until my surgery, getting nervous but definitely looking forward to getting this over with! I want to move onto the healing process already! HAHA!

    Take care, I will be back soon, when humanly possible.
     
    Ron Grob likes this.
  9. robo hippy

    robo hippy

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2007
    Messages:
    3,066
    Location (City & State):
    Eugene, OR
    Half of preparation for surgery is mental, which they don't address. Spend a little time, or a lot, every day doing some calming breathing exercises. My Tai Chi classes really helped me through several surgeries. Yes, and do get screened for every thing. Like Grandma used to say, "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure."

    Wishing you a speedy recovery!

    robo hippy
     
  10. Stan Semeniuk

    Stan Semeniuk

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2012
    Messages:
    83
    Location (City & State):
    Edmonton,AB,Canada
    Dylan,
    I wish you all the best and hoping you recover quickly.
     
  11. Bob Sheppard

    Bob Sheppard

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2017
    Messages:
    154
    Location (City & State):
    Wanaque, NJ
    Dylan-
    Best wishes for the surgery, and make sure you get good physical therapy afterwards. That can make all the difference in recovery.
     
  12. Dan Hall

    Dan Hall

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2019
    Messages:
    31
    Location (City & State):
    Sparks, Nevada
    Prayers and best wishes on the way Dylan.
     
  13. Karl Loeblein

    Karl Loeblein

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2018
    Messages:
    158
    Location (City & State):
    Millington, TN
    Hope all goes well with the surgery. Look me up when you're able to turn again, and I'll mail out a nice turning block to help with your mental recovery.
     

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