5.18.2011

Bob...



Bryan and Bob in Hawaii way back when...

Bryan's dad, Bob, is a regular reader of my blog. Actually he's more than just a reader; he's an "advisor". He lets me know when he wants more of the girls and less posts about "stuff", when he thinks it sounds like I'm (in his words) "shilling". And if, during one of our visits, I recount a story that he particularly likes, he'll tell me I should "stick it on the blog".

Bob is a pretty crazy character. He joined the Army as a teenager and did three tours in Vietnam as a helicopter pilot. After he returned from Vietnam, he became a test pilot at Bell Helicopter while earning an engineering degree -- all with three young sons at home. Later, as an engineer at Bell, he invented all sorts of cool stuff (like new night vision technology) and was awarded several patents. He's super-smart and super-fierce. He's also grumpy as hell (picture a really grumpy Dick Cheney). He and I are pretty much polar opposites in, well...pretty much every way. Needless to say, we've had our challenges.

So the fact that he really cares about this little space -- that he's into it -- is surprising... and pretty sweet. Talking to him about the blog (+ watching how much he loves the girlies) has bonded us, softening me toward Bob as I get glimpses of his other side.

I've also had the chance to watch him bravely (and graceful) battle the cancer that's invaded his body over the past year. Last week he chose to go "all-in" and have an incredibly intense surgery to remove his bladder, prostate and several lymph nodes. It was incredibly risky, and (thankfully) it went well, which was huge.

The day after the surgery though, he had a stroke, which affected his vision. But, as with most other challenges he faces, he's fighting back, hard, and making progress. A couple of days ago, they moved him from the ICU to a normal room, and he's giving the nurses a run for their money...he's the talk of the floor.

Bob -- we may be different, but I want to be fierce, just like you. Just sayin.

32 comments:

Ana Degenaar said...

Such a lovely post, I want to meet Bob, maybe he could guest post about the stuff he is loving ;)

Torrie said...

This post puts a lump in my throat. ...but it also made me smile.

(your posts have a way of invoking mixed emotions =)

Kelly and Kelly said...

he sounds like a great guy. I'm keeping you all in my thoughts & prayers for his recovery.

Mary said...

Beautiful and very honest post.

Misty said...

Reading along, in your post, I didn't expect to be balling by the end... My thoughts are with Bob... And your family...

karey m. said...

well.

give me a minute with this one...i want to read it three times more.

Chelsea said...

that is super sweet. i love this post. sending a prayer!!

-Maria- said...

oh what a nice post. sending thoughts of hope and healing

allison said...

sounds exactly (i mean scary similarities) to my grandpa bob. he's told nurses - while pulling out his own iv's- 'i'm not staying in here a minute longer. ' such a fighter! when he makes his mind up - he does it- whether anyone likes it or not. we always say- he's that mean cowboy character from the old westerns. prayers for both the surly yet incredibly loved men in our world:)

Caroline said...

what karey said.

many, many well wishes to Bob!

Nomadic D. said...

what a sweet, honest, and intimate post, thank you so much for sharing this.

http://nomadic-d.blogspot.com/

Lauri said...

Joslyn,
I didn't even know all this was happening. The last time I saw Uncle Bob, he said to me, "This will be the last time you see me, so goodbye." Very casual like that. I didn't quite know how to respond. Please keep me updated. Sending lots of love to you all, but especially to Bryan.

Simply Mel {Reverie} said...

this is one of my favorites...

sending Bob lots of get well wishes. i have a feeling he will be up and at it in no time.

stephanie duncan said...

damn cancer! growing older and watching friends and family face these terrifying realities can be so awful! i'm sending peaceful thoughts and strong energy your way

TX Girl said...

i love seeing all the pretty stuff, but these are the kind of posts that remind me why I love your blog. beautiful tribute. hang in there bob. the world needs fierce people like you!

pattihaskins said...

Damn cancer is right. I hope Bob makes it through all these challenges. My father-in-law is an electrical engineer that worked at Bell Helicopter designing flight simulators and has patents as well. Small world. Now he's tweaking guitar amps for my husband. Yours is now in my thoughts and I'm sending healing vibes his way.

amy turn sharp of doobleh-vay said...

you are lucky- you love two men. And they love you. I am so glad you are able to have such a special relationship with him. xo This was a beautiful post Jos. xo

Meghan said...

To Bob!

Kendra said...

seriously a lovely tribute! Hang in there Bob!!! And with your support I can only imagine how fierce he can be. Just sayin.

Christina said...

this post brought me to tears. Bob, my family and i are praying for you.

i always love it here.

Sarah Bradley said...

Tears are in my eyes. This is so beautifully written.

Barbie (Birds of a Lovely Feather) said...

Oh Jocelyn, this post is both sad and lovely. Sending lots of positive energy to Bob and your family.

Denise said...

What a beautiful post - has me in tears. It sounds like you and Bob have a beautiful relationship. Here's to many, many more years of fierceness.

Sherry said...

I am calling my Dad today just because. Thank you.

dagstani-and-sons said...

simple lovely, just sayin...

Good + Happy Day said...

Best wishes to you and Bryan and Bob. What a moving tribute to your father-in-law. You're a lovely person, Jocelyn.

Jennifer said...

I can't remember if I've ever commented, but as a longtime reader, I've never felt more compelled to. I was just thinking about my own dad (as I do just about every day), who we lost to cancer almost four years ago. Your post reminded me that so many wonderful people continue to struggle with this terrible disease.

My thoughts go out to you and your family during this very difficult time. Sounds like Bob is in good hands and much loved. All the best.

Fern and Feather said...

He sounds just like my great grandfather... in many ways he was hard to be around but he taught me so much. He was a fighter and never gave up not even in the end. He was such a strong, courageous man that his spirit lifts me up all the time. Henry was named after him with the hope that my son could have half the hutzpah that he had.
love to you, Bryan, the girlies and the nurses on Bob's floor.

Anna said...

Oh, what a sweet post, and what an interesting man. Sending lots of positive thoughts your (and his!) way...

sarah said...

Thanks for sharing Bob with us. Get well soon Bob!

Ana said...

What a lovely tribute. I have been reading your blog for awhile, and I was so moved and inspired by this and your B+ post that I wanted to comment. My grandmother had that same fighting spirit. Like you, I hope to be fierce like her.

Kelly said...

Hope Bob is improving. Lovely tribute!