Charles Llewellyn III, DDSDental Care in Virginia Beach



There are times in everyone’s life when you just have to forget humility for a little while and straight up brag. This is one of those times. Anyone who’s read my blog posts in the past is well aware of my eldest son’s adventures into the world of brain tumors. It has spanned a period of just over seven years and come with struggles most of us can’t imagine. I know everyone has battles to fight in life and some are even more traumatic than a Glioblastoma, but I think it ranks up there with stuff everyone would like to avoid. Its been hard on his family, but I can’t imagine what it’s like living it personally. Imagine going through brain surgery, being glad its over, then being told months later they have to do it again… x4. Lesser men would grow discouraged and fall into depression in the seeming futility of the fight, but my son has chosen to reload and stay engaged. Chase is no longer an active duty Marine, the brain tumor ended that dream, but I’ve heard it said, “once a Marine, always a Marine,” and now I believe it. Marines don’t retreat, and my Marine won’t either.
This past weekend Chase graduated with his Masters degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. Its something he started over four years ago all bright eyed and bushy tailed at a point when it seemed the brain tumor was history and it would be smooth sailing into the future. This is a program that is supposed to take about two years to finish, yeah, it took him twice that long. It seems every time he dusted himself off and re-entered the program, life threw him another curve ball. I’m not sure its even that simple. A good hitter can learn to hit a curve ball, so I guess its more realistic to say that life was the nastiest pitcher in Major League Baseball. It commanded every pitch from a knuckleball to a forkball, and its specialty in retrospect was the beanball right between the eyes. It was so sad at times all he could do was laugh at the powers of darkness that were working so hard to prevent him from receiving his degree. But I guess the thought of a man who was trained in interrogation, is fighting cancer, has experienced rehab, and fought through a nightmare of a relationship was too much for the enemy to fathom out there helping others with similar struggles. And all Christian based. The devil’s worst dream.
Standing around chatting idly as we waited at Regent University for the graduation to get underway, Chase mentioned to me all the things he’d gone through during his time trying to get that diploma he was about to receive. I won’t go into any explanations about the individual trials, but I will at least mention them not necessarily in chronological order. A week in jail, three brain surgeries, rehab, polio infusion treatment, reconstructive surgery, and the end of the aforementioned very unfortunate relationship. Would you have pushed through all of that? Not sure I could have. Even his professors just look at him,shake their heads and smile. Talk about perseverance. Every time he got knocked down, he dusted himself off and jumped back in the fight. I’m not bragging so much as shaking my own head at the feat. I guess the real reason for sharing this, outside of the strong urge to brag to the world, is that we can all learn from him. Life throws curveballs, kitchen sinks, and whatever it has available to throw all the time. So its not “if” we have incredible struggles in life, because we will, its more about what we do in response. I hope this encourages just one person to keep on keeping on in spite of the circumstances as best they can, and continue to try and make a difference in this world. I honestly don’t think he could have done it without his faith, and the fact that he carries that faith in God is probably the trait I’m most proud of. Chase is still undergoing treatment at Duke, but he is alcohol free, the treatment is working, and about that bad relationship…God hooked him up with a young lady who helps him every step of the way and whom I have to believe is his true soulmate. My son was down more times than I can count, but he most definitely isn’t out. Oorah