While the world waits with baited breath for the premiere of the scandalous Lance Armstrong/Oprah interview today (and will learn of how his LIVESTRONG charity will or won’t be negatively impacted), my attention has been turned towards another cause.
Earlier this week, one of my heroes, Good Morning America Anchorwoman Robin Roberts, appeared on the show for the first time in more than four months since undergoing a bone marrow transplant.
While still recovering at her New York apartment, Robin announced that she had been cleared by her doctors to gradually come back to the popular news morning program with the target date being sometime in February.
When Robin revealed last year that she had been diagnosed with MDS, short for myelodysplastic syndrome, a rare blood and bone marrow disorder, some assumed she would be absent for six months to a year. But her body is responding well to the transplant from her older sister, Sally-Ann, according to her doctors.
In addition to this great news, Robin’s illness and recovery has brought tremendous attention to the need for more bone marrow donor registrants of color via organizations such as Be The Match. For people with life-threatening blood cancers like leukemia and lymphoma or other diseases, a cure exists. Be The Match connects patients with their donor match for a life-saving marrow or umbilical cord blood transplant.
It was over 7 years ago that my mother was lost to AML, a form of leukemia that could have been cured had she found a matching bone marrow donor.
To see Robin thrive means so much to me.
Further, Robin’s story of recovery is a shining example of how a cause can be supported INDIRECTLY by way of a spokesperson in a highly positive light without the direct ask of donations of any sort.
On Monday, she began the “process of re-entry,” as she described it, by waking up at 4 a.m. for the live interview, about the same time she used to wake up for the show. She said she would continue the process next week by doing a “dry run”: coming into the studio and getting dressed for the show, but not actually co-hosting it.
I’m rooting for her and can’t wait to see her back live from Times Square.