El Paso Rocker Beats Cancer
A local musician and artist known to just about everybody in the Borderland has been declared cancer-free.
Steve Salazar is a man of many talents. He once fronted the Cantina Flys, currently fronts Brother Strange. is a great artist and teaches art at Bowie High School. He was recently diagnosed with cancer but, Steve wasn't going without a fight. I asked him what it was like dealing with all that he's been through and he was kind enough to not only tell me his story but, to share it with everyone.
It's an awesome reminder that with love and faith anything is possible.
It was to be just an annual check up (i advice everyone 40 and over to get one), when I was alerted that my PSA number was high. Not really understanding what that meant, just that the Dr. was concerned enough to send me to a urologist. After a very painful biopsy (which landed me in the hospital with an infection), I received the results 2 weeks later. I had prostate cancer. I was more in shock than upset. The Dr. continued to explain what level I was at with what he called a Gleason Score. I had a score of 6, or G6. Scores of 6or less describe cancer cells that look similar to normal cells and suggest that the cancer is likely to grow slowly. A score of 7 suggests intermediate risk for aggressive cancer. My wife, family, and my faith helped me feel optimistic. The surgery was 3 hours long, with robotic assistance. The way it was explained to me was that I would be hanging upside-down during the operation with 6 small incisions by the belly button. Everything went well, but the worse was yet to come. I would have to endure 2 weeks with a catheter coming out of the tiny hole of my man part. Pain...discomfort...irritation...sleepless nights, but I had an angel of a wife that took care of me. When it was time to remove the catheter, and even though I was extremely anxious for the removal, the Dr. informed us that the cancer was not at a G6, it was at a G9, and we had made the right decision to remove the prostate instead of Chemo. It has now been 7 weeks after the surgery and I am recuperating well. Other than relearning how to use certain pelvic muscles through Kegel exercises, and wearing Depends to help my leaky faucet, I am elated to be able to drive again, work again (yes, I miss my students dearly), and other daily routines we take for granted. What kept me sane through all this was my art, my music, my family and friends, and an angel of a wife. - Steve Salazar
Congratulations Brother! Learn more about Steve and his art here.