John Sexsmith blog: Over the holidays, remember health, kindness and dessert!

The ol' Global Sports Line. Kevin Karius, Jay Durant and John Sexsmith. Reunited and it feels so good. (That's not remnants of lunch on my upper lip. Just a slow growin' Mo.).
The ol' Global Sports Line. Kevin Karius, Jay Durant and John Sexsmith. Reunited and it feels so good. (That's not remnants of lunch on my upper lip. Just a slow growin' Mo.). Facebook/John Sexsmith

*EDITOR’S NOTE: In April 2012, Global Edmonton sports reporter John Sexsmith was diagnosed with prostate cancer. On Nov. 1, 2016, to mark the start of Movember, he opened up about his four-year fight with cancer for the first time. He talked about his Stage 4 diagnosis, explained what treatments he’s been undergoing and what impact the disease has had on his life and his family.

John has also been writing incredibly candid blog posts about his experience.

Energy has been a definite issue for me lately.

At the the end of November (Movember), I began taking antibiotics for a somewhat serious staph infection. The pills looked like Halloween candies – orange and black – and big! They seemed to have scared away the infection. Unfortunately, I was also simultaneously dealing with a cold and the flu. (Ugh.)

This weekend however, I finally started feeling *human* again.

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Which coincided with arrival of my 14-year-old son. (He’s attending a Hockey Academy in Winnipeg.) He’s a man of boundless spirit and energy and I think he helped inject some much-needed vitality into his dear old dad.

WATCH: Global News staff work up a sweat for Movember 

And on Monday, dear old dad – despite his many ailments – tested stronger, faster and more flexible than he did back in September. It’s thanks of course to the strength and conditioning program, along with yoga classes, he has been benefiting from through Prostate Cancer Canada, the Movember Foundation and TrueNTH.

Dad did however raise some eyebrows during the weigh-in. And not necessarily for the right reasons. Pops is down almost 10 pounds.

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Which is why I got very excited about an annual event held Wednesday in the Global Edmonton newsroom: our Christmas Pot Luck Party! So on Tuesday night, I gladly whipped-up a Drizzle Cake. It’s awesome, if I do say so myself! (I’ll share the recipe at the end of this blog post.) I saw this as the perfect opportunity to begin beefing up again.

But more than anything, this was a great chance to catch up with some fine and long-time friends.

Even though I’ve been off the job since March, I still feel like I’m a member of the Global team. (Just like any player who’s out with an injury, I suppose.) Next summer, I hope to celebrate my 20th anniversary with the station.

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I’ve built some solid, working relationships during my tenure at Global, particularly in the sports department. Kevin Karius and I go way back. We’ve shared lots of laughs together over the years and I don’t know that we’ve ever exchanged any ill will. So, it was good to sit in the sports office again and talk jock with the gang.

READ MORE: Movember with Global Sports’ John Sexsmith: ‘I’m working on living’ 

I also made the rounds in the newsroom. Darcy and I managed to figure out the Offensive Zone Entry for his son’s Pee Wee hockey team. Deb described her hilarious, real life sitcom. Freddy talked about a sudden and very unfortunate family crisis. Kendra and I expressed our profound sadness about an unfathomable incident in Spruce Grove. Christine and Emily commented on my recent blog posts, which inspired me to write another (this).

READ MORE: Global reporter John Sexsmith grateful for Movember, support, ‘kind words, well wishes’ 

Now, contrary to popular belief, the television business is far from glamorous. The stories my colleagues cover aren’t always good ones. In fact, more often than not, the subject matter is terribly cruel. Then, there’s the pressure of chasing interviews, gathering information and getting the story to air. But I can honestly say, Global Edmonton consistently files accurate, fair and respectful reports, including the more delicate material.

And many of the people you see – on camera or the ones behind the scenes – are dealing with difficulties of their own. It’s called life. And death. And health. And strife.

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Which is to say, I’m not alone with my disease or the problems it presents. I just have the profile and the venue to make it public.

READ MORE: Global reporter John Sexsmith on why he decided to share prostate cancer diagnosis 

So, during the hustle and bustle of the holiday season (and all seasons for that matter), please remember: whether it’s family, friends, co-workers or strangers, things might look good on the outside, but the situation could be a whole lot different on the inside.

Why not try and give a little kindness and consideration? You might be amazed by what you receive.

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And do not pass on desert! Especially if it’s Drizzle Cake.

Drizzle Cake Recipe:

  • Place a single layer of whole graham cracker squares on bottom of 9 x 12 pan
  • Prepare one package of instant vanilla pudding. Let it set. Spread pudding over crackers. Place in refrigerator to cool.
  • Beat one small carton of whipping cream, one teaspoon sugar and one teaspoon vanilla. Spread over layer of pudding. Cool.
  • Place another layer of graham cracker squares over whipping cream. Cool and let set. 
  • Top with butter icing. (Icing recipe: 1/2 cup butter, 1 egg, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 1 1/2-2 cups icing sugar).
  • Melt half an Aero chocolate bar and drizzle over icing. 
  • Refrigerate for 12 hours.
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