Rob & Alice

Gratitude for Rob Rubinoff

So, I am officially going back to work on Thursday. I have missed those 100+ woman like crazy and a few of the guys :)

Today, I feel the need to share about my husband, Rob Rubinoff. We’ve been together for a little over five years. We have been married now for a little over two years. When Rob and I met, to say we were both down on our luck was a vast understatement. Neither one of us were even close to being where we wanted to be in life and neither of us “wanted” a relationship. I was a single mom with most of attention focused on raising my sweet little boy. Rob was struggling to try to get back in to the career world and our first few dates were to places like Sonic.

Over time things began to look better, but our relationship wasn’t much more than a weekly “date night” that consisted of cooking dinner that we had split the cost of the groceries and watching Cops. We learned how to laugh with each other. Rob started coming to Chance’s soccer games and baseball games and buying little projects that they could accomplish together. (Truth be told Chance lost interest in them and Rob would get his hands glued together.) We upped the ante and would have our one date night a week along with some “group” dates that included the three of us.

Over the first two years, Rob became my best friend. He began to excel in his career, he volunteered to help coach a soccer team, he started taking me to nice places on date night (although a good home made chicken salad and Cops was just find with me). We married and were living the dream: house, cars, pool, boats, vacations, etc. until 2 months ago.

Tragedy-illness- can change things. And, we are no exception. Since my first doctor appointment, my husband has become a man that trumps all others that I know. He has been a rock. He has made me feel beautiful and confident. He has brought me more flowers in 2 months than he had in the previous 5 years. He suggested that we pray together as a family, he has cooked and cleaned and helped with Chance’s homework and he went overboard hanging Christmas lights and never once said it was a waste of money. He has comforted me, cried with me, rubbed my back, done my dressing changes and supported my decisions even when he had ideas of his own. He reassured me that WE would get through this and because of that,

I have never felt alone. When I get mad, he is the voice of reason. When I get sad, he is the calming hand. When I am tired he carries my load. When a check needed to be written, he wrote it. When medication was needed, he got it. I am so grateful that I married my best friend. I have a partner in life that knows how to step up and be a husband.

For richer or poorer, in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health, knowing that Rob is by my side makes me the happiest woman in the world. I love you Rob. You make me want to be a better person. Thank you for marrying me and adopting Chance. I would be lost without you.

Update – Cancer Free!

I haven’t posted in a while. My computer is broken and even though we have an abundance of electronics that would get the job done, I just like my computer.

I had my last “fill” yesterday at the plastic surgeons and as I lay here I can hardly breathe. I am having muscle spasms in my back and shoulders and it hurts. I know it will pass over the next few days but, right now I am very impatient. I’m probably going back to work next week. I have a doctors appointment on Monday (I still have to have my back drained every week) and I’m hoping that will end soon.

I was hoping to have all surgeries done this year (insurance) but, the doctor wants me to “rest” for 6-8 weeks to allow things to heal more. I will probably have my next surgery in Feb. The idea is that after the “rest” period, the doctor thinks that he can finish reconstruction in one surgery. He also will work with my GYN and any surgery that he is going to do will be done at the same time too! (So, hopefully one more surgery only!)

I have been hesitant to say this because I still have that on the horizon, but I AM CANCER FREE. I am taking the hormonal chemo pill and so far only a few hot flashes, but nothing I can’t handle. Will write more later. Maybe I’ll admit to what tv shows I’ve been watching!!

Gratitude for Chance

I haven’t been doing the daily thankful thing this month, but today I have to say that I am grateful for my son. Not only has he shown an insane amount of strength and maturity over the last six weeks, he has this amazing ability to make me laugh from deep inside. He has the most amazing sense of humor and knows the value and the healing power of laughter.

Update – No Hard Chemo!

My computer is broken, so just a quick update from my phone. The genetic test we’ve been waiting on came back negative.

No hard chemo!!

Tough week in relation to pain and emotions have been high (poor Rob and Chance). I imagine we will all sleep well tonight. :)

Miracles Do Happen

A couple of weeks ago, when I updated I shared that we were waiting on two tests to give us the definite NO that we want regarding chemo.

Today, we went to see the surgeon and they had the results for the oncotype DX test (this measures the probability of the cancer returning and gives a road map to treatment if needed). I am in the LOW PROBABILITY category!!! We are waiting on one more test, but we (and ALL the doctors) believe that it too will be negative-those results we will get next Friday. My surgeon said today EXACTLY what my oncologist said, that the fact that this was discovered when it was is a miracle.

I have never “expected” miracles. I have always believed that you have to work for them. You have to be kind to others for them to be kind to you (there is no time limit on when THEY have to start-fyi), you have to give to learn how to receive, you have to be a friend to have a friend, you MUST be understanding to be understood!!

Through the last forty five days, I have still not expected miracles! I have taken each day as it has come. I have asked God to take what I could not handle. When He provided relief and I was still left with some burden, I knew that He was telling me that I could handle whatever He had left for me. I have NEVER once thought that God was punishing me. I have thanked Him regularly for the love and support that my family, my friends and even strangers have given me. WE-you and I-have worked for these miracles that are occurring!!

Each time you have posted kind words, sent letters in the mail, baked or cooked something, offered yourself and your time, prayed for me (to whatever Higher Power you believe in), you have been a part of the work!! I will never be able to express the love and gratitude I have for everyone that has reached out. When I haven’t been able to sleep, albeit from pain, anxiety, worry or the need for quiet meditation-I have gotten up and looked at what you all have written and thanked God that I am NOT alone in my fight!

So, the rest of the results next Friday, the plan is still to take the hormonal chemo pill for five years, still more surgeries to come AND please don’t quit working for my miracles or YOURS!!!!

Team Express Takes Part in Breast Cancer Fundraiser Walk

The whole family came out to support Alice in her fight against breast cancer. It was a chilly October morning but everyone made it. Alice and Bob held camp at the start/finish line for us. Thanks go out my brother in law Tim Dillard who organized the team and to everyone that participated. It felt so good to be part of something bigger than our problems today.

Update

Today we had follow up appointments with both the oncology surgeon(Dr. Haick) and the plastic surgeon (Dr. Barazza).  Everything went as we had thought that it would.  I still have 4 drains in because I have so much swelling, they didn’t think it wise to pull any of them yet (I’m good with this b/c if I had more fluid, I would pop).  Dr. H referred me to the medical oncologist, Dr. Young, and we will see her for the first time next Friday.  Chemo is still recommended at this point, BUT since I am a Stage 1 and it had not spread at all, I am a candidate for the genetic testing that would determine the probability of the cancer returning.  Even having both breasts removed, this cancer is the same as seen in ovarian cancer so that is what my risk would be. They removed all dressings and we got a real look at everything today. I have one area that we have to watch really closely.  It is essentially just bruised, but there is concern that the skin/tissue might blister and “die”.  We will go back to see Dr. B on Monday about this.

For about 1/2 a second today, I was really sad and then I was okay because I looked up and saw my husband smiling reassuringly at me.  I wish that words could express how I feel about Rob.  He is kind and loving.  He is patient and accepting.  He makes me laugh when that is exactly what I need to do.  I never doubt how much he loves me and no matter what I look like, he always tells me that I am beautiful. I will never be able to show how grateful I am for him.  With him by my side, I know that WE will beat cancer!

 

Update from the Hospital

Alice is doing 1000% better than she was last night. Her pain is being managed and has now taken three trips to the potty. She’s in PJ bottoms and tucked in her bed under her favorite quilt. She’s eating solid food and were planning on taking a walk down the hall in the next hour or so.