Robin and Her Rain Boots

When I met Robin 36 years ago, I was instantly drawn to her. She laughed at herself, she loved people (especially the underdogs), and she listened with her whole heart. She still does all these things and more. She’s my best friend.

We both married young and had our first babies (girls) in 1981–Robin in July and me in September. She encouraged me before I gave birth and throughout motherhood. Years later, she became mother-of-the-bride and cheered me on when it was my turn.

This year, she shared the secret of joy with me.

Four years ago, I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease. It’s an autoimmune illness and the only treatment is to eliminate all wheat and gluten from your diet forever. It’s not the end of the world, but it’s a major life change.

This past May, Robin was diagnosed with the same thing. My heart broke for her. I knew how difficult it would be. Because Celiac affects the body’s ability to absorb vitamins and nutrients, she was extremely iron deficient and needed four infusions. I read up on the procedure, and it didn’t sound fun.

Her first infusion lasted six hours. It was a rainy Monday.

I imagined her strapped to a chair, drenched from the downpour with a huge needle in her arm. She called me. I squeezed my eyes shut and tried to keep my voice peppy.

“Julie, I’m having the best time! I’ve met so many friends. Everyone around me is having chemo. These are the most grateful people I’ve ever met. I wish you could meet Eva. She’s 83. I’m getting to know her. She’s lovely. And guess what? I’m wearing my new rain boots.”

Blinking back tears, I pictured Robin in her polka-dotted rain boots, doing what she does best–forgetting herself, listening, encouraging, and smiling.


“...she smiles at the future.” Proverbs 31:25 (NAS)

P.S Robin’s now adding delicious gluten-free recipes to her website.




  1. What a treasure. What a great story and example of an attitude of gratitude. Thanks for sharing!

  2. LOVE this! Robin is a blessing to you, and you’re a blessing to her! What a wondeful arrangement God instigated for the two of you. Many blessings upon you both as you guide each other through this journey. How fabulous to have a treasured friend along for the ride.
    Much love and hugs,

    • Julie says:

      B.J.! Thank you, thank you, my Friend. Nothing beats friendship….such a gift from above.

  3. Such an inspiration, Julie! THanks for sharing Robin’s joy. May we all look at life this way.

  4. J…so touched by this. I love you. And I’m sorry to say this, but truly I’m so thankful you’re with me on this journey…

    • Julie says:

      I love you too. Me too–so relieved we’re in this together.

  5. Mike RO says:

    Julie, what can I say…..
    You are on the top of your game…..
    Well on your way to mastering your craft….
    An accomplished wordsmith…..
    Humm, I may be a tad prejudice on this one.
    I’ve known the subject of this story for a very
    long, long time……”like” since day 1.

    • Julie says:

      Mike! Our Mike! So sweet of you to comment. We love her big time, don’t we 🙂

  6. Julie, this post made me cry! In a good way. I’ll bet Robin was a blessing for the lady named Eva, too. It’s no wonder you two are best friends. Thanks for sharing.

  7. You just made my day Christy LaShae. And it rhymes. You’re soooo right. Eva! She’s the one. 🙂 Thanks for reading and commenting. Love to you, my friend.

  8. Darlene Cronic says:

    Julie that is just beautiful. I am so glad I know this sweet one. May we all find joy in our moments. Love ya!!!!

    • Hey, Darlene. So nice to “see” you! I know you love her too. Thanks so much for reading and commenting!

      Much love to you.

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