George’s Journal

Finally, after 6 weeks, I came home Friday! And, as you can imagine, it’s wonderful being with my family, sleeping in my own bed, etc.  I’m feeling stronger every day; but, still, I’ve been weakened by the month-long hospital stay.  My shoulders and legs, in particular, need physical therapy. I’m looking into some options to run by my insurance plan administrator.  The good news is the swelling in my right leg and foot has subsided, and they are about the same size as my left leg and foot.  However, my right ankle is very stiff and weak.  I still have blood clots in my right leg, and give myself two Lovenox shots daily to control these clots.  I’m hoping they dissolve sooner, rather than later.

The plan is for me to get plenty of rest, and become gradually more active over the next 90 days. I’ve been advised to avoid crowds, and wear my breathing mask outdoors and around groups of people.  My immune system is still recuperating, and I’m very vulnerable to infections, fevers and viruses. My diet is restricted.  It’s a low bacteria diet, which means all of my food must be cooked, except for a limited selection of fruit.  Fruits I can eat are “thick skinned,” such as apples, bananas, pears and melon.  Berries are forbidden.  Cheryl will be a busy cook, since I’m prohibited from “take out” food and going to restaurants until the end of August.  Fortunately for me, Cheryl is an excellent cook!

For the foreseeable future, I’ll see my doctor twice weekly at City of Hope for blood testing and general check up.  I will be tested periodically to see if there are any traces of cancerous cells in my body. My most recent blood testing was Friday, and Dr. Chen says that the results were excellent.  The new stem cells from my donor are engrafting into my system very well. My first “cancer free” screen is this Friday, a PET-CT scan.  Obviously, being free from cancer has been my objective; so the importance of the testing is paramount.  I’ve put my body and faith in the hands of God, and with the completion of my successful BMT, I believe He has renewed my body, free of cancer.  I believe that the healthy new stem cells have eradicated any cancerous cells in my body.

BUSINESS MATTERS

Due to my health complications, I have been largely away from my business since September. While in the hospital, I exchange emails with my employees and associates. In between hospital stays, I would go into the office for a few hours some days.   During my recent 31 days for my BMT, I was completely inactive. I’ve been a patient at the City of Hope 10 times since September, and also had the 12 day stint at the Oasis of Hope in Mexico.  I’ve tried to stay as engaged as possible without getting too involved; hence, minimizing work related stress.

I’m very eager to get back to work, but will be smart about it. I’ll gradually take on more of my business responsibilities.  My plan is to work at home for 3-4 hours daily beginning soon, with my exceptional assistant, Cindy Forsythe, helping to keep me in the loop on everything and handling much of the details.

Fortunately, I have a terrific staff, and also a tremendous partner in ThomasNet, based in New York City.   My business, Ghindia Industries Online, Inc., is the exclusive sales agent for ThomasNet branded products and solutions in Orange County and the Inland Empire.  My team of 5 sales professionals works closely with small and mid-sized industrial business owners.

Our clients include a mix of manufacturers, distributors and service companies.  We help them market and sell their products on the Internet.  Depending on the particular circumstances and needs of the business, we build them web solutions, including websites, online catalogs, and CAD solutions.  Also, we sell placement and positioning on ThomasNet.com, the top online destination for industrial buyers to source products and services, and to learn the latest in industry-related news.

We have over 300 local clients, each requiring various degrees of attention.  In these competitive times, we’re extremely dedicated to excellent customer service.  As you know, if you don’t take good care of your customers, someone else will…

EXTRAORDINARY PARTNERS

I’ve been closely associated with ThomasNet since 1994, first as an employee/senior executive for over 13 years, and now as an independent sales agent (kind of like owning a franchise).  I met Cheryl at my first national sales meeting in Tucson, AZ, April 1995.  I was living in San Francisco at the time, and Cheryl lived in Chicago, representing Thomas as an independent sales consultant.   A couple years later, we moved Cheryl to San Francisco and then got married in August 1997.  Cheryl is well thought of throughout the company, and I always say that marrying her was a great career move.

ThomasNet (name change in 2003) is the main division of Thomas Publishing Company, which was founded in 1898, and is one of the most respected names in industry. President, Eileen Markowitz, Vice President of Sales & Marketing, Alberto Cassola, and Director of Sales, Jason McVeigh, could not possibly be more supportive than they’ve been.  I’ll be forever grateful for their commitment to helping me get healthy, and at the same time, interacting with my team to support their success in my absence. ThomasNet is a first class operation, simply the best!

SPECIAL PEOPLE AND PLACES

In the past week, I’ve had some special visitors. When we were staying at the apartment at City of Hope, my cousins Wayne and Joan Tallman stopped by.  Wayne referred to the apartment as our “chalet.”  Wayne and Joan have been really terrific about keeping in touch and checking in on me. They’ve visited me in the hospital and at home, as well as helping to keep my spirits up with phone calls and emails. Sunday, we were thrilled to have cousins Hank and Tonilyn Giantasio and their six kids come to our home in Irvine for a visit.  The Giantasios live in Oak Brook, IL and are vacationing in Laguna Beach.

Saturday evening, I ventured out of the house to attend our dear friends, Tim and Kelly Blett’s daughter Alexandra’s high school graduation party.  I’ve known Alex since she was born, and she has grown into a fabulous young lady.  The party was on the Blett’s expansive, comfortable patio.  We arrived early, with me wearing my breathing mask. I caught a ride home from the party before it got crowded, leaving Cheryl and the girls to enjoy the festivities until it ended around 10:30.  It was fun to get out for an hour or so and see some great friends and, of course, celebrate Alex’s milestone.  Alex is attending the University of Oklahoma in the fall.  Boomer Sooner!

BLESSINGS OF COMMUNICATION AND MUCH MORE

I’ve heard from so many dear family members and friends, including those I haven’t seen in years, even decades (yikes!). Thank you very much for your messages, phone calls, emails and financial contributions.  Your concern and care is remarkable!  Your generosity is greatly helping Cheryl and I pay down a number of bills. This has alleviated the level of stress and contributes greatly to my health progress and healing. The blessings we’ve received from you are immeasurable.  Our family will never forget how you’re helping us get through these challenging times.

God bless you and yours,
George

…”With God all things are possible.” (Matthew 19:26)


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