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San Joaquin Valley College Blog

Family’s strength makes everything possible

June 18, 2013

SJVC Respiratory Therapy Student Dario Bobadillo Dario Bobadilla knows rough road when he sees it. And three years ago life for Dario, his wife Danielle and their daughters Jasmine and Trinity was about to get bumpy. Their son Noah was born with Down Syndrome and a hole in his heart.

“Everything kind of changed when our son was born,” says Dario. A month in NICU and constant doctors’ visits meant that someone had to be home and with Noah at all times. “Life threw us a curve ball,” says Dario. But that pitch only tightened their game.

Having worked as a Health Benefits Administrator and Fire Dept. EMS (EMT certified), Dario was already interested in the medical field. Noah’s medical and therapy needs gave Dario the push to go deeper. “Noah gave me the passion to be in the medical field in a way that allows me to better understand and be a part of his world,” he says. Dario enrolled in Rancho Cordova’s Respiratory Therapy program when Noah was about 2-1/2 years old. “It touches me that I’ll be working in a field of cardio-pulmonary disease that affects his condition.”

The Bobadillas approach everything as a couple. “Danielle and I always try to look at the big picture,” says Dario. “We don’t have a lot right now and we budget to the last penny,” says Dario. “But we knew what we were going into.” They also knew the kind of partnership they could count on. “I honestly could not go to school and raise a family full-time without her,” says Dario. “Danielle is my biggest supporter and my best friend and without our team this could not be possible. Everyone in our family is part of our team, no one more important than the other.”

Sometimes it is almost too much. “Whenever we start feeling sorry for ourselves we always remember that there are others who have it worse than we do,” says Dario. “It could always be worse. Then, we just get up and do whatever it takes.”

Now Dario is enjoying his externship two days a week at a local hospital. “My mouth is shut, my eyes are open and I am ready to learn,” he says. Dario started his real-world experience with the thought that “This is an 18-month interview,” he says. “My hope is that, when they are ready to hire, they will remember what I brought.”

As always, Dario has a plan after graduation: Get a job in the medical field; hone his skills as a therapist for 6-12 months; get into pediatrics or NICU. Five-years out: Become a Physician Assistant and work in Pediatrics or in an ER trauma center.

Noah makes this future both plausible and personal for Dario. “Noah is showing so much promise – and he doesn’t like to fail,” says Dario. “He has rubbed off on us and made us kick it up a notch.”