Thursday, June 2, 2011

Rob's Birthday

Rob would have been 44 today.
This is a picture of he and his son Jonathan 
years before he got sick.
Me, Sue, and Rob (mid-90's)
This was a great trip to Connecticut in '97.
Little did we know here how life would soon change.
Leukemia is not a good thing.
I went back to Connecticut during February '99
to help Rob and his family during his first chemo induction.
That's his daughter Shannon on his lap and Jonathan far right.
Rob was an inpatient for a little over a month. 
The chemo was very hard on his body.
This was taken on the morning of his discharge.
Sue, Me, Rob, my Mom and Dad.
We were all so happy that all seemed to be well.
Me and Sue
Not long after (about a month)
came the devastating news that he was wrongly diagnosed.
New diagnosis: Natural Killer Cell Leukemia.
He needed a bone marrow transplant immediately.
Sue was his "perfect" bone marrow match.
L-R, My siblings: Bernadette, Rob, Fred, and Sue.
Sue was taking medicine to proliferate her cells
for the bone marrow harvest a few days later.
She was not feeling well here.
I wished I had been in this picture
but I stayed home so I could make the trip a few weeks
later to be there during the worst part of the transplant effects.
My two brothers:
Fred and Rob
I stayed with Rob in his hospital room for nine days.
It was a tough, tough, tough time.
But he went home eventually.
This was taken not long after he returned home.
He fell down here and was too weak to get up.
His wife snapped this picture.
Later that year (1999),
we all made the trip to visit the family.
Rob called himself "puffy face"
because of the life saving Prednisone he was taking.
He was doing really well here.
It was a GREAT trip.
A year later the leukemia won however, but he had a good
year and a half to spend with his family in the interim.
This saying was on a rock near the Connecticut shore
on my favorite beach.
I would go there sometimes for peace.
I took this picture during Rob's first chemo.
These words sum up how I felt about Rob and his battle:

"Let me win
But if I cannot win
Let me be brave
In the attempt. "

He was so brave.

This was taken right before his first chemo induction.
He was quite sick.

We all miss you Rob
but you are never far away.

Happy Birthday, 
we love you more than we can say.
Your family.