Bob Esparza is the loving father of a 10-year-old son, Tyler, who has cystic fibrosis. Bob and his wife, Susan, live in Texas, where Tyler goes to school and stays active. Bob and Susan have been married for 17 years and have three children.
- Bob and Susan found out Tyler had cystic fibrosis at age five due to many allergic reactions that were initially diagnosed as asthma. “Denial … was our initial reaction and the more research we did on CF, the more frightened we became,” Bob says. “For the first six months, we put Tyler in a bubble, but the doctors were great and helped us outgrow that mentality.”
- Bob and Susan don’t let anything hold Tyler back. They let him enjoy his life and run around with his friends because “he’s a kid and needs to have fun.”
- The thing that scared Bob the most about CF is that everything is “shortened … life is shortened, but I see people like you (Jerry Cahill) at 54, and you give us hope.”
- Bob and Susan get involved in the CF community by doing CFF Great Strides every year.
- “When times get tough, my wife and I lean on each other for support, as well as our family and church,” Bob says.
- Bob’s advice to other parents with a CF child: “Treat your son or daughter like normal, and let them be a kid and enjoy.”
This “LIVING. BREATHING. SUCCEEDING.” Podcast/Vodcast is the 2nd in a series of 12 made possible through an unrestricted educational grant from Genentech to the Boomer Esiason Foundation.