Good Morning America anchor Robin Roberts has gone through a trial with millions of Americans watching. First she battled breast cancer, then a rare blood disease called MDS which required a bone marrow transplant from her older sister. Despite being in the public eye, she did it all with grace and during the process, acknowledged that she had a longtime girlfriend, Amber.
Roberts’ new book Everybody’s Got Something is not just a memoir, it’s an encouraging take on life, loss and grace. Robin talked to the Tom Joyner Morning Show about it and here’s what she had to say.
TJMS: How are you doing?
ROBIN ROBERTS: I am doing so well and that’s the first question people ask me. And it’s not just something off the top of their head. They really want to know. And I really want to say, I am blessed, I am so grateful and I am doing well.
I’m still getting some post treatment it’s more maintenance. Every six weeks I’m getting a shot and it is chemo. It’s under the skin, it’s in the stomach, for about four days and it has minimal side effexts. It’s all because everything’s going well and they want to keep it that way. I got my booty back, because I was having to wear booty pops for awhile. That’s the mark that would prove it for me. I don’t have to wear the booty pops. Welcome back. Welcome back!
You’ve had breast cancer, bone marrow transplant, blood disorder, did i miss anything?
That’s my something and my mama taught me, because I would say the same thing, ‘I’ve got this and that’ and my mama would say ‘Everybody’s got something.’ She was very sympathetic and she knew it was serious but she just wanted me to know that ‘Everybody got something.’ What I have is painful and I’m scared and angry but you realize everybody has those challenges. It may not be MDS, it may not be breast cancer, I don’t know what your listener’s something is but they got something. I’m really trying to impart a lot of Mommy-isms, a lot of my mother’s pearls of wisdom. I was blessed to have her over 50 years of my life and she shared a lot and I tried to do the same with this book.
It was a very moving part of your book that when your mother was sick, you were just about to get a transplant.
Losing a parent is losing a parent whether you’re about to have a transplant or not. I was in my 50’s when that happened and I’m grateful but it was tough. My mama passed on a Thursday and the following Monday I was supposed to have my transplant but of course put it off when she passed. She had had a stroke about six weeks earlier and she had rallied. And we though ‘Oh, she’s going to make it, she’s going to rally again’ but she took a turn. So we rushed home and my sister was up here harvesting stem cells [for my transplant.]. I tell you guys, it was like my mama said, ‘I got this.’ I know you are going to put your health in jeopardy worrying about me so I’m going to pass on.’
We watch Good Morning America every day and we were worried that you came back too soon.
All I can say is when you have, not once but twice, gone through something like this you are craving normalcy. I didn’t come back full time and I did so with my doctor’s approval. As far as fearing for my job, I’ve got to give kudos to the Disney family and not everybody going through something has the job waiting. My colleagues taught me how you love a colleague. Some people come in and did a little extra work and they kept that chair warm for me and I’m really grateful for that.
Are you back to playing basketball?
Back it up, back it up! (Laughs) Slowly but surely I’m doing a little basketball, a little Pilates. It feels good to be able to move.
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(Photo Source: PR Photos)