Tuesday, January 4, 2011

I'm back

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

First off I have to apologies for slacking on the blog. First thing I want you all to know is I am doing fine… great in fact. The only reason I havent been bloging is I got lazy… That’s it just got lazy.

To get everyone updated I am now in a clinical trial at Duke University in North Carolina. I have to go up to Duke every six weeks to see and meet with my doctors there. While still in Florida I get the chemo Duke put together from my oncologist here in Boca. There is one side effect from the chemo and that is it gives me a bad rash (worst I ever had). The Duke Doctors warned me of this… most patients on the regiment get this rash.

Other than Duke not much new for me. I’m still fighting and who knows how much longer I’ll be fighting, but I’m in it for the long haul… I guess I don’t have a choice, do I?

As far as seizures go I did have one a few weeks before Thanksgiving so I’m back to no driving. I have about three more months until I can drive again.

So untill next time… thanks for reading.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Newest Seizure

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

This past Thursday as many if not most of you know I had a seizure while working in Naples, it wasn’t a big one at all in fact we aren’t even sure if it was really a seizure at all… I like to think of it as more of a “brake through seizure”. As of today I’m feeling great and felling as if nothing even happened to me. I see my doctor on Friday and I’ll find out more then.

Here is the story… My old buddy and friend and colleague from Naples (Trey - who was my reporter most of the time) asked me to work on a new project… a real estate show that will showcase properties on Florida’s West Coast and will air in Germany. It’s a fun gig…Trey isn’t available to go on all the shoots but he does have two agents that take me around.

Thursday at this point we were mostly finished for the day and only had beach and landmark video left on our “to shoot” list. At some point I blacked out. The last thing I remember is feeling a little nausea while in the back seat of one of the agent’s cars. I didn’t think much of it since it was hot and I was tired… the next thing I recall is being in the ambulance. After that I recall waking up in the hospital with my family around me. It was around mid-night and I was a little out of it. I was insisting that we go to Capital Grill where we had, had dinner reservations there Thursday night; it took my wife and brother a while to convince me on what time it really was.

The next day I had a few more tests done in the morning and I was realized and sent home… since then I fell well and am doing great/

Out of all the seizures I have had in the past I came out and recovered from this one the best. Driving is still up in the air so as of now I can’t drive. Keep reading and keep those positive thoughts and I’ll keep you posted.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

I’m sorry it has been so long since I last updated the blog but things have been really busy for me... Both personally and professionally. All good!!!

As far as health I’m still doing well, I am off the chemo and Avastin (for now, I’m still on all my other meds). The doctors want to see if that changes the white spots at all. Also Duke University wants me to come up to North Carolina to see them. What’s going on with me no one has seen before, so they are going to have their top guy see me. They don’t think it’s bad… as a matter of fact they think it may be a side effect from the Avastin. They just don’t know what to make of it. Is it scary? Hell yes!!! When a doctor says we have never seen this before, it hits you right in the stomach. So as of now I am on standby waiting to hear from Duke as to when they want me to come up. When they say head up we will be on the next flight. What happens once we are there I don’t know. Will I be there for three days? Or three week? That is the scariest part… not knowing when I’m going or how long I’ll be there away from family. Again more uncertainty. This is the worst part… not knowing what will happen when I fall asleep and wake up the next morning. I know I’m still going to win and be around for a long time. It is just going to be a war with several battles along the way. I’m not going to let each battle or set back put me down… it’s just going to give me more strength to fight the next battle and eventually win the war.

Recently a friend asked me if I would trade the cancer for a leg… without hesitation I said yes. With losing a leg you know what you’re in for down the road. It’s not going to be an easy life but at least with a leg you can get a prostatic… I can’t get a prostatic brain.

I know we all have our hurdles in life some more serious than others… it all depends on your perspective and attitude. It doesn’t matter what your hurdle is in life… it just matters on your attitude. Don’t let it get you down and beat you up. You can win just like I’m going to.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Headed to Duke

Thursday, July 29, 2010

I don’t know what to make of things now. Earlier this week I had an MRI so my doctor’s could take a look at my brain since the last MRI. If you remember one of the previous MRIs showed no regrowth in the tumor area. Good news! But the scan also showed some white spots in the front area of my brain… Good news? Bad news? No just news… the Doctors weren’t positive what to make of the spots, they hadn’t seen this before. So this past Monday I had another MRI … no changes! Is this good? is this bad? I don’t know. Clinically I’m doing well. I feel well. I look well. So I’m still of my chemo and Avastin. Are the spots a result of the Avastin? No one knows. Avastin is relatively new to the brain cancer world. The spots are not a tumor or at least not acting like a tumor, I’m not reacting to the spots as if I had a tumor. Are the spots just spots in the works to forming a tumor and we did a MRI just before a tumor was formed? And they took me off the Avastin before it could do any damage? This is what scares the shit out of me no one knows. They have never seen this before.

So our next step is to send me to Duke University in North Carolina. Not sure when I’m going but I believe I’ll be finding out soon and be on the way soon. Once I am there I’m not sure how long I’ll be there, my gut tells me three days.

What a whirlwind this has been. This nightmare started just over a year ago. I woke up one day as Just Michael Levine (father, husband, brother, son) and woke up the next day as (father, husband, brother, son) and now cancer patient. Nothing we ever expect to find out. This doesn’t happen to us. It happens to other people. Well you know what? I am other people… we all are other people. I’m keeping my positive attitude and strength even though it gets harder day by day. I have to keep that attitude in order to keep myself alive; I need it to get through each day. What gives me the most strength is my little boy Cole. My day could be as shitty as possible and just seeing him and getting a daddy hug and daddy kiss will make everything all right.

On August 3rd it will be the one year anniversary of my surgery. Do I celebrate? Do I morn? Do I ignore it? How do I honor that day?

After all I have been through so far this is the most frightening. The uncertainty is getting more and more uncertain. What’s going to happen when I get to Duke? I don’t know. No one knows? So I don’t know what to the state of mind I am in. I am positive and staying strong all the while being terrified. Is there a word for that? I just don’t know.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

The last few weeks have been fun. Kim and I went to Key West for a few days… just the two of us. We had a great time. Of course we missed Cole but it was nice to get out just the two of us… it was the first time we went on vacation without Cole. And this past weekend my family had a small party and I got to spend time with some of the people closest to me… that is always a big help and boosts my attitude every time.

As far as me I’m doing well. The last MRI I had showed no regrowth of the tumor which is just astounding. But the results are double edged. Even though there is no regrowth they found some white spots in the front area of my brain. They don’t think it is a tumor… it’s not acting like a tumor… I’m not reacting to it as if it were a tumor. What my doctors believe is that it’s a reaction to the Avastin I am taking to keep the tumor from growing back. So what we are going to do for a few weeks is take me off the Avastin and the Chemo and see what happens. We’ll do another MRI and from that we will learn more.

But I still feel good. We are worried about what we will find out… I’m still living a life of uncertainty… my entire family is. I always expect the best and try not to think about the worst but it is always there. I will keep my positive attitude and with your help. With your prayers and thoughts I know no matter what we find out we will get through it.

Thursday, July 1, 2010


Thursday, July 01, 2010


I have come up with a new motto… Life is a contest; your only competition is yourself. You decide if you win or lose… you may be asking me… Mike what does that mean? What it means is… simply you decide your own fate, life may hand you a crappy hand of cards, but if you play hose cards rite you will win. It doesn’t matter what anyone else has, had, or will have… play your cards rite and you will win. Look at me I have freaking brain cancer… one of the most aggressive forms of it, and as far as I am concerned I am winning… I am winning in life and if I were to go today I won… I freaking won!!!!! I have an awesome son a beautiful wife, a loving and supporting family as well as friends. Life is all about attitude, I may have cancer and of course the medicine, doctors and science have helped… but it is also attitude that has gotten me through this hell… along with the prayers and support I get from family, friends and strangers from around the world. When your down and feeling like shit it’s your attitude, family and friends that pull you back up. Lying in bed and asking why me will not get you better… it will just bring you down and possibly make you sicker.

I just found out today that I inspired a friend to come out about her illness. She has muscular dystrophy, and turtleitis. I am praying for her and her family. She has been reading my blog over the last year and it inspired her to do the same. She is now writing s blog sbout her battle. How awesome is that? This just goes to show that what I have been saying is true. I got this cancer for a reason. If it’s just to inspire people to do whatever they have to do to make them self’s feel better then that’s fine. I am winning in life… and so is she.

Now one more thing… my news friends would say I buried the lead story but o’well. Las week I had a MRI and it went well. Those of you who read it on Facebook already have an idea of what happened.

The results came back good. There was no tumor regrowth. I have no tumor!!! As good as that sounds there is more to the story. The MRI did show some white spots on the front area of my brain. The doctors think it is a result of the Avastin a new medicine I have been taking to fight the regrowth of the tumor… so it has been doing its job. So for the next few weeks I am off the Avastin and the Chemo. I then get a follow up MRI in a few weeks to see if the white spots are gone or have reduced in size. I know this sounds scary but it’s not as bad as it sounds. They don’t believe it is a tumor, just a side effect from the Chemo.

So please as usual keep me in your prayers.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Fathers Day

Things have been going well. I am feeling good and slowly getting back to work. This past week I worked in Fort Lauderdale for a long time client. I shot video for a summit they produced. The hardest part was the first and last day… I had to help un-load and re-load two 18 wheelers worth of video, audio, and lighting gear. Let me tell you this is the hardest I have worked in a long time. It was grueling but it felt good working that hard… I needed that. The best part of the gig was the fact that Kim and Cole were able to come with me and stay in the hotel with me. They had a mini-vacation as I worked my ass off… I never had a chance to see them except for when I woke up and went to sleep… but as long as they had fun it was worth it.

Other than that life is good. Yesterday was Fathers day and being able to spend the day with Cole and the rest of the family was all I could ask for… it was a great Fathers day.

I do however have some bad news to report, our dog Norma Jean had to be put down last week. As hard as it was to decide to do we knew it was the correct decision. She was fifteen years old, lost her hearing, was going blind and may have had demencia. She just wasn’t a happy dog. For Kim this was especially hard… Norma was her “first” baby. When I met Kim she already had Norma, so it was a package deal for me… two for the price of one. I loved Norma. When I first got sick she would sit on my lap and lick my face trying to make me feel better… and you know what she did make me feel better. She may not have understood English but she knew something was different with me and did what she could do to make me feel better. As the year went on and I got better she just got sicker. I know Norma is looking down on the three of us and is a star in the sky… This is what we told Cole and I think it helped him... and I believe it too. It hasn’t been easy on Cole but let me tell you he is a strong kid and is getting through this better than I thought he would.

Keep thinking those positive thoughts and keep the prayers coming… I can’t tell you just how much they actually help.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Real Men May Not Eat Quiche, But They Do Cry

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

A very commonly asked question I get is… where do you get your strength and positive attitude from? I simply answer the question by saying I was born with it. I don’t know how else to answer it. When I found out I had cancer… I broke down. I continue to breakdown from time to time. How can I not? I have cancer. It’s the first thing I think of in the morning. But as far as strength I just have it. Maybe I was born with it… maybe not. Maybe I forced myself to have it. Knowing that I have to be around for a long time and understand that giving up is not an option I just keep my strength and positive attitude.

This is what I have learned strength and a positive attitude may or may not be something people are born with but it is something I can teach. Strength and a positive attitude is the best way to fight. Not being able afraid to show your feelings… let them out. If you need to cry… then cry. Don’t worry about what others think. Remember and this is a motto I live by “real men may not eat quiche, but they do cry.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Behind The Wheel

Well it’s been a year since I had my first seizure. If you remember it happened just after Mother’s day of 2009. So I have been fighting for a year, although we didn’t know what was happening until August of 2009, that’s when we found out I had cancer… a level four glioblastoma (GBM). This mêlée started a year ago and I haven’t been behind the wheel of a car since, I was told I had to go six months seizure free before I could drive again… well guess what? It’s been six months since my last seizure so I took it to the roads on Sunday… can I tell you oh what it felt like. For those of you who drive daily you just forget. The only way to explain it is think back to when you were 15 and you got your learners permit... the exhilaration, the adrenaline, the excitment That’s how I feel… it’s a feeling I haven’t had since 1985. We are treating my new freedom as if I had a learners permit. I am only driving with Kim in the car and not in the dark. I want to make sure I have all my sensations back. It is like riding a bike but I want to be safe… this is not a game. Driving gives me my freedom back and the ability to get back to work.

This past weekend we went to Costco and I tried one of these message chairs they were selling. As most of you know I am a skeptic and did not expect much from it. I have to tell you it was one of the best messages I have ever had…. And coming from a chair it was the best. I have to figure out a way to get one… having a chair like this would be a huge help to my recovery.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Video Blog

This is my newest video


Monday, April 19, 2010


This weekend was a great one... I got to spend it with family and a flash back to 1984 by going to a Bon Jovi Concert.

Saturday was a nice we just spent the day relaxing and veging out (it’s nice to have a day like that).

Then on Sunday we went to the Fifth Annual Greg Wohrle Feel The Love Fest. It was a great time nearly the entire family came out. Greg also had a brain tumor but surcame to it several years ago, but his family keeps his memory alive by having this event to raise money for brain tumors.

As I have said in the past this is something I want to get involved with, not only on a once a year bases but run, organize and be a major part of. With all the local celebrities in our local area we should be able to get some of them out to these events to bring in more people and in return more money for research. With the connections I have and your help if you know anyone who can help bring them in let me know.

Back to me… I am feeling great… Bon Jovi was awesome last night but they need to play some more old school music over their newer stuff. We had great seats; I don’t think I had ever seen Kim so happy since I got sick… It was a great time for the two of u

Monday, April 12, 2010

Michael's Poetry

So here it is nine months since this whole nightmare started… and as bad as I thought it would be, its going good, the tumor is gone for now… and let’s hope and pray that it never comes back. As bad as I thought this was going to be its not that bad… it sure as hell aint good but it isn’t bad either. I have come so far in the past nine months, I have learned a life time of lessons… and can only imagine what else there is for me to learn. Its amazing how you can be living your life happy and then wake up one day only to find out you have cancer.

Friends and family do me a favor take a good look at your life and enjoy what you have… you never know when it could all be gone. I’m not talking about materialistic things. It doesn’t matter who has the biggest house, the fanciest and fastest car or the biggest diamond on their finger. Enjoy your family... tell them every day that you love them… even if you are arguing stop for a second and say I love you. When you’re disciplining your kids and they are yelling back at you stop for a second and say I love you. You never know when it’s the last time you are going to see them… you never want the last memory someone has of you to be you yelling at them… you want it to be you saying I love you.

That’s it for my advice today but I do want to share a few things with you… lately I have been writing poetry. Yes I Michael Levine is writing poetry. You are probably thinking what does he know about poetry? Well the answer is nothing… I’m just putting my feelings down on paper and I’m calling it poetry. Take a look and let me know what you think.

This first one is for Cole.


Little boy son of mine remember the times we have

we don't know when and if it they will ever end

Little boy son of mine the times we have are worth more than you will
ever know

Little boy son of mine you'll never understand the love I have for you
untill you have a child of your own

Little boy son of mine. I love you and will always love you

Monday, April 5, 2010

Life Just Gets Better

This Last week, week and a half has been absolutely amazing. I’ll start off with the walk. Team Levine came in second place for families in raising money, as of today we have raised $5,388.00… and if you can believe it the money is still coming in… and considering my goal was just $1,000.00 WOW!!! I have to thank all of you who donated, Came out, brought friends or just prayed for me and thought of me and my family. I even had a good friend from middle school who I hadn’t seen in 8-9 years come out… seeing him was awesome… it was like those last 9 years ofnot talking never happened.

This last eight months has been hard and each month will continue to be hard but its events like this that I know I got cancer for a reason… what that reason is I don’t know yet but what I do know is it is to help people.

I had never felt more love from people than I did that day. People keep telling me I am inspiring to them. It is you that gives me that power to be inspiring. Team Levine had the most people turn out for the walk than any other team… that shows me how much I am loved and that gives me more reason to fight this disease.

After the walk Cole, Kim and I took a much needed vacation to Disney World where we had tons of fun. Cole went on Space Mountain for the first time and he loved it… he just thought that it did not go fast enough. What better way to celebrate than going to see Mickey with the family? I couldn’t be happier than I am now.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Best News Ever

I have some great news to share with everyone… After meeting with my Doctor on Wednesday and receiving the results of Monday’s MRI we heard the best news we have heard since this nightmare started. My tumor is gone!!! You read it correct… the tumor is gone. The Chemo, radiation, and Avastin are all working. They doctors were so surprised that the radiologist was sure that I had had a second surgery. I still have a fight a head of me and will be on chemo for a long time… we can’t forget that the tumor I had is one of the most aggressive around so as much as this is a time to celebrate we still have to keep in mind that the fight is not over… but I have no tumor and that is amazing at this stage of the fight.

So all your prayer and thoughts worked… you all were there when I need you and I know will still be there for me… I love you all and can’t wait for the brain cancer walk this weekend.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Times Can Get Hard but They Get better

The other day I was feeling sorry for myself and was in a bad place… having cancer is hard but after spending the day with Cole on Tuesday I am feeling much better. No matter what medications my doctors put me on the best medication in the world is just daddy time… one on one time with Cole. While spending time with Cole I realized what happened to me to put me in that bad place… as I told you Kim and I had a date night to celebrate our nine year anniversary, I think what happened is I got to appreciate what I had and got afraid to lose it. I am going to say it again as much as having cancer sucks I am very lucky. I am going to fight this fight with every fiber of my being… not to mention every fiber of your being too. You have all been with me by my side since this battle started weather you are next to me in person, in spirit, faith and mind you have been there and I feel it and that is going help me kick cancer’s ass.

I also refound my love for music… there is so much you can find in music to inspire you as long as you look, even when you don’t look or listen it is there.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Monday, March 08, 2010

Times Can Get Hard

You know I am feeling great and everything health wise is going great. There are just times like today that are hard… hard emotionally. When I think about… really think about what having cancer means it reopens my eyes to what family truly is and I appreciate them even more… I don’t want to die. I want to watch Cole grow up and have children himself. I don’t want to miss what most people in life take for granted. I think I have put the true meaning of cancer so far in the back of my mind that I’m almost living in denial. I do still have my positive attitude… I don’t want anyone to think different… it is just hard to wakeup everyday knowing that you have cancer... I am finding out that there is a fine line between denial and a positive attitude… I just need to find out where that line is.

Kim and I will be celebrating our 9 year anniversary in ten days… this past weekend we had an early celebration. We went out for dinner and my in-laws watched Cole over night so Kim and I were able to spend some quality time together. This was great and uplift to my spirits… it is just hard waking up every day with cancer not knowing what to expect.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Good news

This has been a great week… a really remarkable week. It started off with me getting a MRI on Monday and spending the day with my father.

Then on Wednesday being told that the results from the MRI looked good. The words “looked good” were some of the best words I had heard since this nightmare started. We didn’t know what to expect but just being told the MRI looked good” was awesome.

Then Wednesday was even better… Kim took the day off to go with me to the Dr to get the results… so after taking Cole to school… I got to walk him to class and I never get to do that… Kim and I had breakfast. After that we met my brother at the Dr Where we got the actual results of the MRI. We were told the swelling went down and the pea size tumor stayed the same size… the fact that the tumor stayed the same size is I think a miracle… you have to remember that what I have is an extremely aggressive tumor – for it to not grow is astounding.

Kim and I had lunch to celebrate and did a little shopping … I got the book I have been looking for. I was also talking to a friend about all the time I have during the day and they suggested I find a new hobby… so I decided to take up painting… I know nothing about painting but what the hell let’s see what I can do it will help me pass the time.

Thank you for all the prayers and love you all are an inspiration to me.

Please remember to sign up for the brain cancer walk by going to


Tuesday, January 19, 2010

5k Brain Cancer Walk

Met with my neurologist on Monday and good news the fact that things have stayed stable is good. The fact that I have been seizure free for some time is good and a great sign of my progress. I have had some weird eye issues lately… mostly while reading. The Dr. tested my eyes and does not think it has anything to do with the tumor… I just need new glasses. It has been a while since I have had my eyes checked so this weekend I’ll get new glasses and see what happens.

I want you all to know that there will be a 5k Brain Cancer Walk Saturday, March 27, 2010 at John Prince Park in Palm Beach County, I am in set up a team “TEAM LEVINE” we will raise money for further research so mark your calendar.

For info or to donate go to


Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Cancer sucks… but life is good

Today I am feeling good and am staying positive. I am however getting cabin fever. Not being able to work or even get to work is taking a toll on me. Not working and not being able to drive takes its toll on you.

I am glad that I am tolerating all the drugs and have been able to keep the seizures at bay. I just can’t wait until I can get back behind the wheel again, do some work and lead more of a productive life. It’s not the not driving part that is at times the hardest… it’s the loss of independence not the cancer itself. Yes the cancer sucks… I just wish I could drive again. I have to go six months seizure free before I can drive again… then I have to get a car. If you remember my lease was up just as I got sick so I never got a new car. I think when I can drive ill get a used car over a new car. Why spend the money on a new car when I can save some cash by getting a used one and if I do have a seizure I don’t have a new car sitting there that I can’t use.

On a funny note a good friend of mine went to a physic… I know what you’re thinking but have an open mind… I was skeptical too. The physic knew about me being sick without my friend saying a word, and she knew my illness started off violently. She knew about the seizures she knew things that my friends never mentioned. The good news is the physic said that I have a lot of longevity in me but I will be on chemo for a long time. Take what you want from this be skeptical… I don’t care. I believe now… I have to believe.

Friday, January 8, 2010

I have lost 25 pounds

I was recently asked by a friend about exposure to cell phones and the result of tumors along with other electronics I was exposed to while working in TV news this and this is what I told him.

“I have thought of it all. Everything from the cameras sitting just next to where the tumor is… to cell phones and even the live truck… the problem is – there is no solid research to support any of it. I’m joining a brain tumor support group that I hope they will have some of the most recent info and research on the subject.”

The thing is… know one really knows anything yet if there is anything to know. The only thing I can do at this point and wait… wait and see if any proof comes out.”

Again today I am feeling good enjoying the cold weather and getting ready to go for a walk. Did I tell you that since the whole nightmare started I have lost 25 pounds… not the ideal diet but I still had to get new pants and I am going to try to stay in those new pants by walking and keeping my meals smaller.