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Thursday, January 5, 2012


A few of you may know that I was asked to share my story with a reporter who is gathering material on young widowers and their journey back to dating.  In writing the narrative he requested I'm pulling from stuff I've written previously, and this is one piece worth reposting here:

I know that early on when my late wife was first diagnosed with AML (Acute Myeloid Leukemia) on March 7, 2008, around 4:34pm in the Hematologist's office in Stony Brook, some things we don't forget, the news was devastating.  However being told that Leukemia is not a death sentence, that it isn't just manageable but curable gave us, and particularly me a lot of hope.  Especially after the first round of induction chemotherapy put it into remission and even the doctors were shocked by the rapid success.  And then against the odds they found a National Registry donor, willing to donate, that was about as good a match as you're going to get from a non-relative.  While the treatment certainly changed everything we were still able to be a relatively normal functioning family during those early months when Claire was not in the hospital.  I had total faith that while there was a long hard road ahead, that she was going to make a full recovery.  I believed that this was indeed God's plan, that the entire ordeal was to make us closer as a family, to teach us the value of spending time together, to teach us how precious life is.  I honestly had no doubts about what the outcome would be.  This faith held on for a while, through the leukemia coming back, through an inability to achieve a total remission, through the bone marrow transplant.  That bring us to the leukemia coming back after the transplant, to the day we went from thinking that we were on the road to eventually returning to a normal life, to being told there some of the best doctors in the world have no tricks left up their sleeves and that they'll try to buy Claire as many weeks or months as they can.  That day was actually when my mourning began, mourning our hopes and dreams, our future children, that day was probably the worst, definitely worse than her actual passing, because by that point she was suffering and not herself, and it was almost a relief.  We made the best of those 8 months, did a lot of things, but she kept getting weaker, and things kept getting harder.

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