Mark Menendez – Walking on Sunshine

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MenendezBlogBeing Mr. Mom this season has been the biggest challenge of my life. It is hard work running a household and running my fishing business. Hats off to all of the single parent households, it is hard work.

The extra stress is helping my wife with a battle with Pancreatic Cancer. This has kept me out of my boat and in the doctor’s offices. We recently received a MRI. It showed nothing! The oncologist ordered a MRCP. This is a high definition MRI. While waiting from those results, it felt like an eternity! We received the “ALL CLEAR”. I almost fell to my knees. Three experts have viewed the MRCP since and are very pleased with her progress! The best music we have ever heard. Donna’s first statement was, “You can go back to the Elite Series.”

I still have not processed what she said. Did I hear her right? Or am I in shock that we may get some normalcy back in our lives? I’ll take the normalcy over the fishing at this point. If Donna can make it to a one anniversary of the removal of her tumor without a recurrence, then the percentages swing our way! The early percentages before surgery were grim. A one to four percent chance of living two years was the best outcome. Surgery, chemo, and radiation added to our chances. It is our hope to get to our first anniversary in a few weeks.

Having this knowledge has made me begin to think about fishing again. I can’t pull the trigger yet. We have more scans and doctor’s offices on the horizon.  I have begun a slow reconstruction process. I’m currently working with Chiropractors at the Lone Oak Chiropractic Clinic, in Paducah, KY to get my body aligned. Step two is working with a great friend on Walking on Sunshinedietary concerns. The third step will be training with a professional to get back in shape. I’m not worried about sorting tackle, boat wraps, or sponsor contracts yet. There will be plenty of time for this important part of professional fishing. This is all in my mind as I do daily routines with school, homework, and two kid’s activities!

In the meantime, I have been extremely busy with speaking engagements, sponsor appearances, and outdoor writers. Pierce Productions and I have been filming VLogs for Tacklewarehouse.com and other projects. My 2013 Skeeter FX20 Boat has a grand total of 18 hours on the Yamaha 250 SHO. Every hour has been promotional events or filming for sponsors. I would love to just go fishing with no cell phone or camera for a few hours. I can’t seem to manage finding the time.

I have several other events scheduled in the coming six weeks. I am thinking of a bucket list event I would really like to attend one time in my life. Donna gave me the go ahead for next season while we were at ICAST! I would really like to compete in the US Open at Lake Mead in 2014. This event has shrouded in history. It is also responsible for tournament winning techniques that migrated east to anglers. I would like to be a part of that fantastic event!

As I look around the corner, I can see good things. Sunny days, crisp fall mornings, and topwater bass are in my future.  “I’m Walking on Sunshine” just like the song says.

Mark Menendez is an Elite Series Angler. You may follow him at Facebook and Twitter