Thursday, December 17, 2009

12/16/09 The Holiday Season

It’s hard to believe that the Holiday season is upon yet again {yes that is a jpg of our Christmas tree this year!}. Thinking back on issues from last year at this time I find myself extremely thankful for this upcoming holiday. Peggy and I have done some wonderful seasonal concerts to date. Last Friday night we had a thank you concert at the Presbyterian church in Red Creek, where in April there was a spaghetti dinner fund raiser for us. It was a wonderful night and we were both thrilled to be able to give back just a little bit to so many who have been so generous to us. This weekend we do our annual pilgrimage to Lake Placid for our Adirondack Christmas concert at the Center for the Arts with good friends Roy Hurd and Frank Orsini. Peggy and I will also be doing the music for the Christmas eve service at the First UU church in Syracuse. Lake effect snow is in the air, it must be Christmas time !!

On Monday I had my last visit with the chemotherapy oncologist at Clifton Springs. It was a great visit to the cancer center and I was surrounded with a flood of emotions returning to where I had been a daily visitor for nearly two months this spring. I spent an hour playing music on Hammered Dulcimer for both the chemotherapy lab and the radiation lab. It was wonderful to visit with the nurses and the doctors and have a chance to see them feeling a little more like my usual self. I received a clean bill of health from the Chemo oncologist and hopeful thoughts that some of the neurological issues that I have been dealing with will slowly begin to subside with time. With the passing of time, I have been able to fully realize what a special facility the cancer center at Clifton Springs really is. The staff there has always treated us like family and the positive, helpful environment was a big part of my successful treatment recovery. I can’t thank everyone there enough. I also have been seeing a wonderful acupuncturist, Caroline Robinson in Oswego NY. and she has been really helpful with the neurological issues that have been a problem, especially with my right hand and legs. I continue to slowly put on a few pounds and eating what I can, Thanksgiving dinner was a soft food bonanza to say the least!

As we close this year and look forward to a new year I wish for all of you good health, happiness and a wealth of positive energy to come your way. I hope to be able to see many of you this winter and spring at concerts and workshops. Peggy and I will be traveling to Florida this January and to North Carolina in March for concerts and workshops. Closer to home, the Susquehanna String Band will be performing Jan 8th at the town hall opera house in Bainbridge NY, and Jamcrackers { Dan Berggren , Peggy and myself}, will be performing at the Music hall in Oswego NY on Jan.9th. We are so blessed to have an abundance of good friends and increasingly good health as the year comes to a close. To all of you who have been so thoughtful over the last several months, thank you again from the bottom of my heart, I really could not have done this journey without you!! Have a wonderful Holiday season and I will continue to update the blog as my recovery continues and we enter 2010. Peggy put it best in her song “Giving Thanks”

“In this season of joy and thanksgiving
As I look at the live I am living
I count up the blessing of old friends and new
And I am thankful for you, I give thanks for you”

May we all count our blessings this Holiday season.


  1. Thanks for sharing all the wonderful news, Dan. It was great to meet you last summer at Cranberry, and I hope that our paths will cross again. Blessed Christmas,

  2. So wonderful to read this latest entry, Dan. It is truly a blessed Christmas and Solstice to have you healthy and reovering from treatment, sharing your music and love of life. ~ Glenda

  3. You and Peggy have fought a tough battle this past year. This is such good news to know you are doing well. And we are fortunate to know that you and Peggy are able to bring such joy thru your music to others. (We love your "Keeping Christmas album.) Blessings to you both.
    Leon & Pat, Ithaca, NY

  4. Dan and Peggy:

    Happy holidays (celebrate ALL of them!). I look forward to your January concert at OMH and hope to see you at he meeting.

    Dan, it's nothing like your ordeal, but I also had some rather uncomfortable sensations and loss of feeling in both arms, following the cervical fusion (c4-c7) that I underwent in June, 2006. It's taken some time but it's just about completely reverted to the original state--I can still play the guitar as badly as I ever did!


    Terry Manion

  5. Happy Christmas to you and Peggy,
    Love from the mountains,

  6. Danny,
    Best wishes for a great 2010. I hope we get a chance to get together in the coming year. I am so glad that things are going well for you. All is well down here in Texas.

    Joe Farmer

  7. Dan, We really enjoyed the concert on Christmas Eve! It was great to see you play, and to hear you both sing together again.

    I hope you had a wonderful Christmas and that 2010 brings good health and peace for all of us.

    Love, Maria

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  9. What a year it has been for you guys! I know that my family enjoyed seeing you guys in Lake Placid. I wish for continued clean bills of health for you in the coming years! Enjoy Florida and the warmer weather on your trips!

  10. HAPPY NEW YEAR, Dan and Peggy!!

    May this new year be as filled with love and joy and blessings and friends and music as the past one, BUT WITHOUT all the cancer turmoil!
    Very best to you both,

  11. Dear Mr. Duggan, My father has just finished his radiation and Erbitux chemo treatments for head and neck cancer. I am so happy to read of your progress with this illness. It is very encouraging and motivating. I am curious as to what neurological issues you have/had with your hand and legs. My father's journey all began with weakness in his legs and balance. The doctors were looking for something neurological when they discovered the tumors. They still do not believe his leg issue is related to the head and neck cancer. He is at the most difficult stage of his illness. Hopefully the recovery will begin soon. I am still praying that as he recovers from the cancer the leg issue will be resolved. I was hoping you might have some insights to share.

    Kind regards,
    Glenda Willner

  12. Your blog has enriched my life. While I am so sorry for what you have been through, your positive outlook, thankfullness, sharing and kind spirit have been a true inspiration. We can all hope for a similar attitude with whatever trials we experience in life. Thanks for teaching us these valuable lessons. Even with pain and difficulties, we are better to share with others and be open to love and healing than to suffer in silence. Thanks for not being silent and for allowing us to hear your story.

    Cindy M.

    The following is a "nested meditation" from the book "Divinity in Disguise" by Kevin Anderson.

    Be still.

    Be still

    Be still
    by the day today.

    Be still
    by the day-to-day

  13. Hey Dan, Always love your posts......and thank you for all you have shared this past year. It has helped and will continue to help people, myself included............We just got news that cancer has touched my family. My Dad has lung cancer. Just one tumor and It is very early, he is considered level zero thankfully. We learn what his treatment will be next week. If the bloggers/vibers could include my dad, Ted, at 7 pm, it would be much appreciated. Blessings to all for a great 2010!