A Father’s Journey Of Love And Purpose After A Traumatic Loss With David Roberts

Widowhood Real Talk with Tina | David Roberts | Father’s Love

  Discover the profound journey of Dave Roberts, MSW, LMSW, in this heart-wrenching episode as he tells the devastating loss of his daughter, Janine, to cancer at just 18. With a career dedicated to helping others through addiction and grief, Dave shares his deeply personal story, reflecting on Janine’s brief but impactful life and the lessons her struggle taught him. From his professional roles as an adjunct professor and podcast host to his poignant insights into the mosaic of emotions that define the human experience, Dave’s narrative offers a blend of raw emotion and spiritual enlightenment. Join us for an inspiring conversation about finding peace amid unimaginable loss, understanding grief’s diverse expressions, and the enduring bond that transcends life and death. This episode is a tribute to resilience, empathy, and the power of a father’s love in the face of profound sorrow. I am sharing my experience of loving the same man for 32 years, a mother to two adult children, a retired military officer, a breast cancer survivor, and my connections with others. Anyone experiencing suicidal thoughts should reach out to a suicide hotline or local emergency number in their country: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/basics/suicide/suicide-prevention-hotlines-resources-worldwide  — Watch the episode here   Listen to the podcast here   A Father’s Journey Of Love And Purpose After A Traumatic Loss With David Roberts Our guest is Mr. David Roberts, but he goes by Dave. He is an MSW, LMSW. He became a parent who experienced the death of his child when his daughter Jeannine died of cancer on March 1st, 2003, at the age of eighteen. He is a retired addiction professional and adjunct professor in the Psychology, Child and Life Department of Utica University in Utica, New York. Dave also teaches Psychology classes at Pratt Munson School of Arts of Design. He hosts the Teaching Journey podcast, which can be found on most podcast platforms. Dave has presented workshops, national conferences, Compassionate Friends, and for bereaved parents in the USA. He was also a keynote speaker at the 2011 and 2015 National Gatherings of Bereaved Parents of the USA. Dave also co-presented a workshop titled Helping Faculty After Traumatic Loss for the Parkland, Florida community in 2018 in the aftermath of the mass shooting for the Stoneman Douglas High School. Dave has contributed articles to Medium, Open to Hope Foundation, Mindfulness and Grief, Thrive Global, and Recovering the Self Journal. He has also appeared on numerous podcasts as well as Open to Hope Television. He co-authored a book with Reverend Patty Farrell titled When The Psychology Professor Met The Minister, which was published on March 1st, 2021. Your ability and the links to contact Dave are going to be in the show notes and the comments on the YouTube channel. Welcome, Dave, to The Widowhood. Tina, thank you. It’s a pleasure to be here. I’ve been looking forward to our conversation for some time now.     Thank you so much. I’m sorry for the death of your daughter, Jeannine. I know it becomes something you learn to carry, but it’s still something that you are carrying that has shifted the part of your life. Janine’s Battle Yes, it has, Tina. Certainly, one of the things that I never envisioned having to do as a parent was bury my child. It was unfathomable to me. It was something I didn’t even consider. It was so far removed from my consciousness that I never considered it. When she got sick and then she got progressively more ill and she began to deteriorate progressively from her cancer. I was going to be walking a path that I never thought I’d ever be walking. The thing with her cancer is that it was a rare form of cancer called Alveolar Rhabdomyosarcoma and she was diagnosed approximately three weeks after giving birth to her only child and my first grandchild, Brianna. Brianna was born on May 2, 2002. I had gotten my Master’s in Social Work degree. I had that degree conferred upon me on May 19, 2002. On May 26, 2002, she was officially diagnosed with Alveolar Rhabdomyosarcoma. The diagnosis was confirmed approximately a week later. I think it was June 3, 2002, at the Dana-Farber Research Institute in Boston, which is one of the premier, if not the premier, hospitals and research centers for pediatric sarcomas. In a five-minute consult, they said that she had stage four cancer with bone marrow and lymph node involvement. There was absolutely no cure for her cancer. The only hope that they had was to put her cancer in permanent remission until they could find a cure. At that moment, Tina, what I heard, and I know my daughter heard, was that in all likelihood, unless there’s a miracle, she’s going to die. In ten months from diagnosis to death, I call her death now a transition from the physical body to the spiritual world. She transitioned ten months after being diagnosed. It was a relatively quick progression. Sarcomas have to be diagnosed early. What had happened is she had injured her right foot in a freak accident during pregnancy. Her foot got progressively more swollen, did not respond to traditional treatments for a swollen foot, and an MRI revealed an undefined eight-centimeter mass in the bottom of her foot. It was biopsied and it was found to be a malignant tumor. The rest has set me on a path that’s been a mosaic of a lot of different emotions but ultimately ended up with transformation. Learning how to transcend grief, find peace with what had happened, and be grateful for what I have in my life. It’s been a long journey to get there. Mosaic Of Emotions You said a lot there. There is so much to go back to unpack. Is the concept of mosaic a term you use often? What does that symbolize for you in this process? I look at mosaic as a combination of a lot of different emotions, a lot of different …

A Father’s Journey Of Love And Purpose After A Traumatic Loss With David Roberts Read More »