Thursday, September 20, 2012

Robin Roberts Battles Illness…

I haven’t watched Robin Roberts, 51, too many times on television, but the times I have she comes across as a beautiful, intelligent, compassionate human being. She is a featured reporter/co-anchor on Good Morning America. I have heard her talk about her battle with breast cancer and how she fought and survived. She underwent chemotherapy and radiation treatments. She shaved her head and wore a wig on GMA, not to distract viewers from the show. This ordeal lasted from July 2007 to March 2008. 

Robin Williams was a 5 year cancer survivor by June 2012, but announced on the show that she was diagnosed with another very serious immune disease called MDS or myleodyplastic syndrome. This is a rare blood and bone marrow disorder. I saw her announce the news on GMA and saw the fear in her eyes and heard the quiver in her voice as she announced she would be leaving the show to fight yet another battle for her life. She put on a brave front, but inside she had to be scared to death. Robin’s sister, Sally-Ann, fortunately was a perfect match for the bone marrow transplant she would need as part of her treatment. Robin began her leave from GMA on August 30th, 2012 to prepare for her bone marrow transplant and to care for her mother. Her mother died a few hours after Robin began her medical leave. Robin delayed treatment to attend her mother’s funeral. 

“I find great comfort in knowing my mother lived an amazing life,” Roberts said in her blog. “To help me deal with my immense grief my family tells me momma gave me one final gift as her last act. She waited for me to get home on Thursday to say goodbye. She was there when I took my first breath and what a privilege to hold her sweet hand when she took her last breath...Momma knew she wasn't physically able to be with me for my bone marrow transplant. My siblings say mom wanted to spare me the agony it would have been if she had passed and I couldn't be there,” Roberts continued. "That thought was weighing heavily on me.”

Robin Roberts has a blog where she is chronicling her “Journey” with this latest battle for her life. Robin has had to undo chemotherapy before the bone marrow transplant and it’s taken it’s toll on her. I came across an article which quoted from the journal. Robin says to readers, “the daily chemo/treatment caught up to me by the weekend. My body is so weak but not my mind. YOU give me the courage to keep going.” 

I can’t helped but be touched by Robin’s story as it plays out in the media. She has had to fight not one, but two life threatening diseases.  Her story, her determination, is inspiring. So many people are going through their own difficult journeys right now. People I know and care for are fighting one medical condition or another. Where do we find the strength and courage to go on against all odds? From our faith? From the love, support and prayers of family and friends? From our own inner strength? I just don’t know. If I had to guess I would have to say it’s a combination of all of that plus our will to live.

Robin Roberts is a remarkable and inspiring human being who is stronger than anyone should have to be. Even at her weakest point she is writing to thank others for their prayers and encouragement. Her mind is strong. The mind can work wonders on the body. I pray for Robin and for all those fighting their own battles, that they come out the other side whole and healthy. 

May God watch over you and Bless you Robin Roberts.

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