A Hero is called Home

A hero is defined as a person who is admired or idealized for courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities.

We typically think of heroes in comic books like Batman or Superman.
But occasionally, there are real heroes in the real world.
I was fortunate enough to know one of these real heroes.
Stephen-Robinson-1531753179.jpg

This is Dr. Todd Robinson.

He saved my life.

Dr. Todd is being put to rest today after his sudden passing.
I am writing this to honor the memory of a true hero and to share the story of how he saved my life.
When I moved to Florida from North Carolina, it was because I was actively dying from a disease I didn’t know I had yet. I had lost a massive amount of weight, gotten down to 87 lbs and was unable to function.
My healthcare providers in NC told me there was nothing else that could be done I needed to spend the rest of the time I had left with loved ones. I had exhausted every resource through Wake Forest Baptist Hospital and the Novant Health system.
I was dying and no one could figure out why.
Upon my moving to Florida, my parents were distraught to see my health condition. My mother frantically sought answers as to why I was so unwell.
Two streets over from where we were living, there was a small, family practice called Robinson Family Clinic. My mother made an appointment and convinced me to go see this doctor.
I had already accepted my fate. I had seen hundreds of doctors in NC. There was no way anyone could help me….or so I thought.
So, I went to the clinic. At the time, it was run by Dr. H.G and Dr. Todd, which were a father/son team of incredible skill, intellect and compassion.
I can remember seeing Dr. H.G walk past the waiting room. It was clear he was very old as he slowly moved through the office with a smile.

“Wow, that man is old. If he can live to be that age and still be able to work, maybe these doctors can help me after all…” I thought to myself.

But my appointment was not with Dr. H.G; it was with Dr. Todd.
I walked into the exam room and explained my whole story to Dr. Todd. He listened intently and told me to get all my medical records and he would thoroughly review them.
In NC, I had so many doctors convince me all my health issues were made up. With Dr. Todd, I felt validated. He believed me. He knew something was going on and he was going to figure it out.
I left the appointment with something I hadn’t had in a long time…

HOPE.

Once Dr. Todd got my records, he carefully reviewed them and called me back for a follow-up appointment.

“You are a puzzle, Miss Winslow. But I love a good puzzle. We will figure this out.” He told me with a grin.

He proceeded to tell me that he believed my issues were auto-immune and my body was attacking itself. He told me various things he wanted to try to calm my body’s violent attack on itself. He had a plan. He had options.

I was battling so many random symptoms at the time. I wasn’t able to eat, had lost a great deal of weight, had no strength and was struggling to breathe with severe asthma.

My asthma was so severe my 02stat never got out of the 80% range. Dr. Todd was concerned and put me on cortisol.

My first day on cortisol was a miracle. It was like somebody turned a light on. I could breathe, felt alive and had strength.

I called Dr. Todd the next day and told him my ecstatic news.

“Hmmm.” He said on the phone. “That makes me wonder……I need you to come into the office for some blood work.”

He instructed me to hold the next steroid dose (at that point I was only on them a day) and come into the office for labs.

The next time I visited the office, the nurse drew my blood and told me they’d call me with the results.

Dr. Todd ordered an 8am cortisol lab. We were shocked with the results. My levels were 0.08. Cortisol levels range from about 10 to 20 micrograms per deciliter.

We repeated the test to make sure it was accurate. Sure enough, I had adrenal insufficiency. Something I’d never even heard of.

Dr. Todd referred me to an endocrinologist and I had an ACTH stim test done that confirmed his diagnosis. I had Addison’s Disease.

I was then put on hydrocortisone and started to stabilize to the point where I got a job and was living again.

My health was still a challenge and I suffered with a lot of physical pain and autoimmune issues. Dr. Todd’s office was a plethora of options not widely available in modern medicine. He started suggesting I try things to help improve my health.

Every day before I clocked into work, he allowed me to go the office and connect to one of the alternative treatment machines FSM and once a week would get an IV of magnesium.

My migraines, muscle pain and symptoms vastly improved. If I ever needed anything, I could count on Dr. Todd to do whatever he could to help me feel better.

But it was more than just physical health. He had a way of healing your heart with compassion and his abundant faith, too.

One of the last times I spoke with Dr. Todd was before my emergency kidney surgery. I called his office to let him know what was happening and he called me back later, on his personal line, after hours just to make sure I was okay.

A kidney stone had lodged itself in my kidney an was causing it to swell (hydronephrosis) to the point it could have ruptured.

I had to have emergency surgery to save my kidney. I was terrified. Having had a hysterectomy not long before that, I was afraid to go through another painful surgery.

Dr. Todd prayed with me and comforted me. “You’ve been more sick before and gone through more surgery. You will be fine. God has a purpose for you, Miss Winslow and you won’t leave this earth until it’s done.”

I survived the surgery and the next time I saw Dr. Todd, he started calling me the nickname, Seabiscuit (after the horse who suffered trauma but survived to race again)

“Brick by Brick, Miss Winslow. You’ve come through so much. You have an indomitable will.” He told me.

“That makes me think of the abominable snowman, Dr. Todd.” I joked back.

He just shook his head, smiled and went back to seeing other patients.

Dr. Todd Robinson was a hero. All of his patients share similar stories to mine. He was a brilliant person who went ABOVE and BEYOND the call of duty.

He told me he saw his practice not only as a medical clinic, but as a ministry.

His life was a true example of godly compassion.

We lay Dr. Todd Robinson to rest today on July 21, 2018.

I cannot believe he is gone, but I am so thankful for chance to have met such a powerful force of good in this world.

I will carry on the torch you left behind, Dr. Todd.

Love, Seabiscuit

Dr. Stephen Todd Robinson Obit

Thank you to his wife and kids for sharing such a hero with the rest of us. He leaves behind a massive wake of compassion and faith. We know he is celebrating in heaven with Dr. H.G and looking down on all of us.

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