As Melissa and I woke up on 10/1, ready to celebrate our 9th wedding anniversary, I could have never fathomed that this date that had grown to become such a special milestone of love and happiness would soon also take on a whole new earth shattering significance – the day we learned that she had Leukemia.
The news buckled my knees, literally sucked the breath out of my lungs in a way I hadn’t felt since exactly nine years earlier when I first saw her walking down the aisle. Shock gave way to disbelief and then fear. Anchored by Melissa’s bravery, those feelings were soon pushed aside to make way for a new view our family has adopted – “Melissa WILL beat this, so let’s band together to fight and methodically, step-by-step knock this cancer out”.
Melissa’s Uncle, who is a half match, donated his stem cells so she could have another chance at life. Haploidentical transplants come with some risks, but we had to give it a try. The transplant didn’t work! The cancer is back. Melissa now needs an unrelated donor to help save her life. Melissa participated in a few trials but was never well enough to receive another transplant. We saw the following message on her Instagram page just 5 days before Christmas 2021.
“Our beloved Melisa has now stepped past where our earthly eyes can see, but her love surrounds us still. Her memory will guide us, pull us forward and light our lives forever. Her girls can walk on through life with joy, as they mirror her in living gratefully, loving deeply, practicing kindness, and finding wonder every day – gifts she gave them. She was a beautiful soul, a true friend to so many, the anchor for our family, and the pain we feel is unspeakable in missing her. Yet, her light will not go out. She is so loved.”
“Life is eternal; Love is immortal, Death is only a horizon, and a horizon is nothing save the limit of our sight…”