Nobody ever knows what’s going to happen. We don’t know if tomorrow is our last day on earth, or if we have 50 more years. One thing we do know is that we can always make the best out of the life we have. That is why I would like to tell you about my husband, John.
We have two beautiful daughters together, Olivia and Rachel. I always knew John would be a wonderful father, but he has definitely exceeded any expectations. He is not just the girls’ father; he is their daddy.
John does it all. He bathes them, reads to them, and even does their hair–I don’t even have to fix his finished product! When John has a long day at the office, the girls always want to know when their daddy is coming home. When he does arrive exhausted, I try to let him relax, but he insists on being around us. Well, it’s usually the girls piled on top of him! I know he is being the best dad he could be so that Olivia and Rachel will always have wonderful memories of their time spent with daddy.
See, when our youngest, Rachel, was born, John was diagnosed with a rare form of bone marrow disease called Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS). To put it simply, he will either develop leukemia or need a bone marrow transplant because his blood cells will stop working properly. Even though John is in good health right now, we never know when he may become sick. He gets his blood checked every few months. Every time he goes in for the blood test, we are usually a little tense before hearing the results. There is a lot of praying going on at our house!
The diagnosis was a definite blow to us, and we were in shock. I immediately started to panic at the thought of not having John in my life. Not only is he our girls’ favorite person, he is mine as well. I can’t tell you how much I love John. He is my absolute everything.
After we shared our fears and a lot of tears, John came to the realization that getting diagnosed with MDS was a gift. I remember looking at him as if he were crazy. John explained to me that knowing he has MDS, and the possibility of him not living a long life, has given him the ability to cherish what is important.
He has always believed in the saying, "I work to live, not live to work." This is why he has always put the girls and me first. John has always been a hands-on dad; now, I think he just holds the role of being a daddy closer to his heart.
Oh sure, he loves golf, too. It’s funny how he’s trying to combine his love of golf and his love of family. When our first daughter was born he announced that she would be a golfer. Then, our last daughter was born and he said that she would also be a golfer. He now takes Olivia to the driving range to hit balls. I have been recently informed that I need to take golf lessons because he wants us to be "the golfing family."
I didn’t want the focus of my story to be John’s disease, but rather how he turned an obstacle into a positive influence in our lives. We now realize it is possible to do that no matter how serious the challenge. For this, I am very grateful to John.
So, yes, we don’t know if John will be here for the long haul. Maybe he will. What I do know for sure is he will always be our girls’ happy, silly, lovable daddy. John will also be my happy, silly, lovable husband–maybe someday golf partner as well! Happy Father’s Day to you, sweetie.