SPOKANE, Wash. - Garth Brooks' return to Spokane helped create some special memories for many people. For one Spokane couple, getting to Brooks and Trisha Yearwood gave them the hope they needed during one of the scariest times in their lives.
Jessica Mittelman and Robert Howe waited in line Sunday night like most happy couples who were excited to see Garth and Trisha take the stage. Mittelman and Howe are good at waiting. They have to be. When you're living on borrowed time, that's all you can do, wait.
"There's just been that constant worry about is that time gonna come?" Mittelman said.
They've been together for 12 years now. When they met, doctors said Howe had four years to live. His brain tumor was a ticking time bomb. Then, just months before they welcomed a new baby into the world "they found out that one tumor that had burst split into like 18 new tumors" explained Howe.
He never knows when he'll have a grand mal seizure. But the pain he feels, that's always there.
"The only thing I can compare it to would be like if you were to sever a limb on yourself and then walk around with that limb severed untreated," Howe said.
He's able to find a little relief by listening to Garth Brooks and watching Trisha's Southern Kitchen.
"I watch her cooking show every day," Howe said.
It's a good distraction while he waits for surgery.
"We've had people tell us no, we're not willing to do it because of how risky it is," Mittelman said.
They waited a long time for a yes. On Monday, they'll pack up and head to Seattle. On Thursday, Howe will undergo a craniotomy so surgeons can try and remove those tumors and give Howe his life back.
But first, they're enjoying a night together at a concert they've been waiting for as they watch the couple perform that gave them so much hope. Howe wanted to thank the Garth Brooks for all he does.
"I don't think that people like him could even realize the effect that a song would have on somebody" Howe said. "If tomorrow never comes, I do want my wife and kids to know how much I love them and I struggle everyday with wondering if I've done enough."
His wife didn't wait long before she replied.
"I know he loves us and I hope that he knows we love him too," Mittelman said.