This past Sunday was Father’s Day. Even though I still have my son JC to celebrate with, it’s hard knowing Cristian can’t enjoy the day with us. He was definitely there, though. Two things happened to remind me of that. First, Bear Walker’s friend Roland told me that Cristian would send me a butterfly as a sign. And lo and behold, I was in a meeting on Friday with Ralph Mercado and Jaison Newring and what flies through the window? A butterfly! I was so blown away. I called Roland and Bear right away to tell them the prediction came true and I made sure to scan Roland’s note to show everybody. It was amazing, and so was the dream I had the night before Father’s Day. It was the most beautiful dream about Cristian. He gave me a kiss that felt so real I can’t believe it was only a dream. I remember the same thing happening on Valentine’s Day. That tells me Cristian is watching over me from heaven and he wants me to know how much he loves me, especially on holidays like this. That’s how strong the bond is between us. I cherish it every day of my life and will continue to cherish it when we meet again one day in heaven.
It’s unfortunate to think about how many DIPG fathers had to spend Father’s Day without their children. Or any holiday. Or any day of the week. From what I’ve heard, we lost six kids to DIPG just this last week. One of them in particular is very close to my heart. Danielle Rosario, who I wrote about in my last journal entry, died on Father’s Day. It was so sad. Her father had called me earlier that day to say she wasn’t doing well, and then later to tell me she’d passed away. In the time that he and I spoke about DIPG, we came to be friends and my heart goes out to him. It was yet another reminder of how far we still have to go before children with Pontine Glioma can have the hope of living long, full lives.
John “Gungie” Rivera Forever Cristian’s Daddysed away, as well as the children who will be saved when we find a cure.