What a crazy, busy, wonderful couple of weeks it has been. Between the Johnson's visit, 3 Day festivities, our friend Zak coming to visit, celebrating Mike's birthday, a family reunion and an extremely packed schedule for Meg Malley Photography - things have been super busy!
We had such a good time having Brinley, Andy and Andrew here for a week. It is always so great to see them and to be able to spend so much time together. Mike and Andy are like partners in crime and always have a great time when they are together, and of course, Brin and I never have moments without lots of laughs and tons to talk about. It was so amazing to see how much little Andrew has changed since I visited them in Florida in February. He is a total cuddle bug who gives great hugs and kisses. He loves to pretend to cook, and carries his pots and pans everywhere he goes. He is active, smart, and full of smiles. The week flew by too fast and of course I miss them already, but I am so grateful that they were able to come visit. I love you guys!
And then there was the Susan G. Komen 3 Day For A Cure....how do you even summarize this event? You truly need to experience it in order to appreciate how moving and special it is. I am so grateful that five of my wonderful friends (Brinley, Nikki, Becca, Chanell, and Janine) dedicated so much of their time and energy to training, fundraising, and completing this 60 mile, 3 day challenge.
There has been quite a bit of controversy and drama with the Komen organization this year. On top of that, after my diagnosis, I learned that many women in the metastatic breast cancer community feel very upset with Komen due to the way that funds are dispersed, and the disparity regarding dollars allocated to metastatic research. Although I may dedicate an entire post to my feelings on these issues at some point, today is not that day. What I do want to share is that despite what anyone may say, I am grateful for what the Komen organization has done to raise awareness for this disease, and even if it's only one cent put towards metastatic research- I am grateful for it because every little bit helps.
What I feel most proud about regarding the 3 Day event this year is that my friends know how I feel, they know what is important to me, and they went above and beyond to spread my message about metastatic breast cancer awareness throughout this 3 Day event. I often feel lost in the "celebration" at breast cancer events. I am not the same type of "survivor". Breast cancer is not in my rearview window. It's not in the past and it's not something that will ever be behind me. I live and breath it every day and often times I don't feel quite as celebratory as many of the women at these events that have beat their disease because they were fortunate enough to be diagnosed early. So, what did my friends do? They spread the word about metastatic disease everywhere along their 60 mile journey. They brought it out of the shadows even though it's not the perfect success story. They talked about it, displayed the words "Metastatic breast cancer" proudly on their tents and signs, and they raised awareness for the fact that thousands of women continue to live with this disease each and every day and that we have not been truly successful until a cure has been found for all of us! Not just those diagnosed early.
Team Meghan Malley Rally got robbed in the tent decorating competition. They should have won with their awesome Olympic themed decor...."Going for gold for Metastatic Cancer"....I loved it!
I was so proud of each of them (and all the other walkers!) and loved chasing them around and cheering them on all weekend long. They were amazing!
A huge thank you to the friends and family that came out to our cheering station on Saturday. It was so nice to see you there, supporting the walkers, and supporting me by your presence. The MVP of the day goes to Momma Jan - best cheerleader around...hands down! Thank you Mom and Doug for all you did that day- I appreciate it more than you know. Love you!
And a special, HAPPY 30TH BIRTHDAY to Becca Boo!!!! She celebrated the big 3-0 while walking all day long for this cause. What a great friend that is!
I am exhausted just looking back on the pictures from that weekend. :) What an emotional 3 days it is and I can't thank everyone enough for being part of it. Whether you walked, cheered, donated, or kept the walkers in your thoughts and prayers that weekend - thank you so very much!
After the Johnson fam left last Wednesday, our friend Zak came into town and we celebrated Mike's birthday, which was Saturday. It was a great weekend filled with lots of friends and family. HAPPY, HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my very best friend and the most incredible person I know. I am so very honored to be your wife and I look forward to celebrating many more birthday's with you in the future. Love you so much!
Well, it has been 7 weeks since I received my great scan results and I was really hoping to make it until the next scans in January before I had to deal with any new speed bumps, medically speaking. Unfortunately, that is not the case. I have been noticing some changes with my left breast over the past few weeks - swelling, changes in shape, warm to the touch. I have learned by now that I need to trust my instincts about my own body so I got in to see my plastic surgeon, Dr M. as soon as I could.
I saw him this morning and he is concerned. He doesn't know exactly what is going on and the cause of the swelling could be from a few different sources. To spare you all the details, many of which I am still trying to understand, this could be as minor as some blood accumulation due to some trauma that I wasn't aware of, all the way to something very serious such as a type of lymphoma that (VERY) rarely occurs after receiving breast implants. Needless to say, I am very worried. I don't want any complications. I don't want more surgery. I was finally starting to feel "normal" for awhile. I picked up more hours at the clinic and Meg Malley Photography is booming and keeping me so incredibly busy! I head to the hospital tomorrow for an ultrasound and needle aspiration of the fluid that is accumulating in the left side of my chest and breast. I will then have to wait for awhile until the results come back from the lab telling us what this is. I am praying that it will only require some simple intervention, such as Dr. M draining the fluid. I will be sure to keep you posted. Please keep me in your prayers that this is nothing serious and that life can continue as "normal".
Hope everyone is doing well and enjoys a wonderful Labor Day weekend. We are headed up to Torch Lake with our friends and I can't wait for some R & R!
How do you find the balance? Isn't that the age old question. Whether it applies to a stay at home mom trying to find time for her own passions, a hard working dad trying to make enough time for his family, or a cancer patient trying to live her life to the fullest...without burning herself out but also trying to pack a life time of plans into each day since she knows her time is likely going to be cut short. How much time do I dedicate to advocating for this disease and spreading awareness, while also just trying to live as normal of a life as possible. Finding the balance is something I struggle with each and every day.
I have felt a little more overwhelmed than normal lately, and I am trying my best to not let it consume me, and to try to scale things down a bit. But, it's so hard when in the back of your mind is this constant voice whispering, "you better do this now, you don't know how much time you have," or "you really should go on that trip because this might be the last one you have," or "take as many pictures as you can of your friends since there will be a time when you won't be able to see them much - when you will be sick and can't hang out with them, and you will want these memories recorded."
I often wonder if these haunting voices will ever leave my thoughts. Will there ever be a time when I don't have a twinge of sadness or fear living in the recesses of my mind, lurking in the shadows, reminding me of the sad reality of my disease.
I am not sure if those feelings will ever really leave me, but I am grateful to now know that they aren't as powerful as they once were. I spent this past weekend up north with 8 of my best friends from high school (and two of their little babes), and once again, it was such a blast to spend so much time with my Beauts. Last year's girls weekend was great too but I distinctly remember how emotional I was and how much I was hurting inside, while at the same time smiling and laughing with my girls. I felt so devastated at the thought of losing my friends because of this disease. I thought that would be my last girls weekend. I was heartbroken to think that I wouldn't see their children grow up and that all of the plans we all had to grow into old ladies together would never become a reality for me. I didn't want to be a downer and share this with them, so I remember having a good, hard cry with my mom when I got home that Sunday.
Although those thoughts haven't completely escaped me, and although there were times this weekend where I looked around at their beautiful faces and felt a deep sadness that I may not have as much time with them as I always thought, I am grateful that the blanket of grief wasn't as heavy this time. I have great hopes that there will be many girls weekends in my future and that I will have many more amazing times with the best friends anyone could ask for.
(In our defense...this was our only group pic and it was first thing in the morning before Beth & Kel had to hit the road. Excuse the pj's, bed head, and under eye bags that required all of us wear sunglasses...even Alice! haha! Miss Mae was taking a little nap so she didn't make it in the group shot)
I apologize if the thoughts and feelings I share with you are not always happy, upbeat and positive. But, I have felt a distinct shift in my mindset since last year. Sure, I shared my feelings a year ago but I think I often put on a happy face without even knowing it. Now that I have had more time to adjust to living with this illness, and my treatment has significantly calmed down, it has allowed me to see things in a different light, and I feel like I would be doing a disservice to not share how I really feel - the true struggles, the highs and lows of what my life is really like. I am naturally a happy and optimistic person but as we all know, life is not always like that and there are hard times too. Although I never intended on it, this blog has crossed paths with many people, many of which are women just like me, living with chronic disease, and if even one thing I share can help them realize they are not alone in their feelings, then it is worth it for me to reveal myself so freely. Not every survivor story is one of success, cures, and a happy ending. But this is real life, and it's my life. And all I can do it try to share it to help myself cope, and hopefully help someone else that is walking this road with me.
Speaking of "walking this road with me"...the Susan G. Komen 3 Day For A Cure is THIS WEEKEND! I am so grateful that my wonderful friends, Brinley, Becca, Nikki, Janine and Chanell are participating this year as part of Team Meghan Malley Rally. (And a special shout out to Stacy and Nancy for completing the 3 Day in Chicago last weekend! woohoo!) They are walking again this year to not only raise money for this cause, but to help spread awareness that this disease does affect young women, and that we need more research and funding for treatments and a CURE for metastatic (stage IV) disease.
The Opening Ceremony is this Friday, August 17 at 6:30am at Oakland Mall in Troy. The walkers will walk over 20 miles on Friday through Troy, Clawson and Farmington. They will continue their walking all day on Saturday as they walk through the Plymouth/Northville area and they will end at the Closing Ceremony in Dearborn at the Ford World Headquarters with the ceremony beginning at 5pm after the walkers have completed 60 miles!
If you came out to support the walkers last year, you know what an incredible event and experience this is. I would really love for you to come out and support Team Meghan Malley Rally again this year. I am once again hosting a cheering station on Saturday where we will have a tent with snacks, music and cold paper towels for the walkers to put on their necks. The route has changed slightly this year so our new location for the cheering station is at the Rusty Bucket in Northville from 11am - 3:30pm. If you can make it, try to wear your Team Meghan Malley Rally t-shirts from last year to show your support to our incredible walkers and if you would like to help out by coming early to set up, staying after to tear down, or volunteer to bring food or supplies (like ice and paper towels for the walkers to soak and put on their necks), please let me know and I will tell you what we need. The Rusty Bucket is located at 5 Mile and Sheldon in Northville - a map/directions can be found here. Please stop by to not only support our team, but all of the walkers that dedicate so much time and energy to this cause - many of whom are survivors themselves. We had an amazing turnout last year and I know it meant so much to all of the walkers, and especially to Team Meghan Malley Rally.
For more general spectator information from the 3 Day site, click here.
Just a little reminder of all the fun we had at the cheering station last year.....
With the 3 Day rolling around, that means that my dear friend, Brinley and her wonderful family are coming to visit from West Palm Beach, Florida! Brinley, Andy and Andrew arrive this Wednesday and are staying for a full week. I cannot wait to see them! Brinley and her entire family have been such a huge source of love and support since day 1 and I am so grateful to have all of them in my life. I haven't seem them since Andrew's first birthday celebration weekend in February and I am so excited to have an entire week to spend with them!
I hope to see many of you on Saturday and if you can't make it, please keep the walkers in your thoughts and prayers for a successful, injury free event that not only raises lots of money but helps further educate countless women and men so fewer lives continue to be lost to this disease. Also feel free to leave them encouraging thoughts and messages on our Facebook pages as we post from the event this weekend.
I am being 100% truthful when I say that there has not been one moment throughout these last 15 1/2 months where I have asked, "why me?". I have never said, "this isn't fair", or had a huge pity party for myself. I have had my fair share of sad (okay, even devastated) moments, or times where I felt a little angry, frustrated or discouraged but I have never let it suck me down that big black hole of despair for very long. I have held tight to the faith that God has a plan for me, and although I may never understand it, He is watching over me and wants the best for me. I have spent more time working on my relationship with God since the day I was diagnosed. We had a little heart to heart where I said, "Hey, remember me?! I could really use your help right about now!"
There have been many "coincidences" along this road which I now don't believe were coincidences at all. There have been people that have been brought into my life for very specific purposes at seemingly the exact perfect time I needed them. There have been so many scary and stressful moments where I have been shocked at the sense of calm and peace that I felt come over me. It is in these times especially, that I know God is with me.
Although I was raised in the Catholic church, I found myself distanced from it the older I became. What always seemed to cause me frustration and confusion, and ultimately my lack of participation within the church, was the question of, "if we have an all knowing and all loving God, how does he let such bad things happen to such good people?". I have struggled with this thought since I was a little girl and it has always been a huge source of internal turmoil for me.
I am truly thankful for a few very special friends that help me work through these thoughts, and who share with me their thoughts and beliefs which have helped me understand that God does truly want whats best for me. He is not punishing me through this cancer. But, bad things do happen - and that is just life. I have been finding more peace lately by putting my trust in God and I am sincerely grateful for that.
With that said, it doesn't mean that my faith doesn't waiver. Traveling this road ultimately leads to many moments where it is hard to have faith, where it is hard to remember that God is with me, and where it is a challenge to focus on my blessings. The past week or so has been an true example of this.
Aside from having my scans completed last week and knowing those results are looming over my head, there have been a few other things going on in my personal life that even on their own would be devastating and difficult to get through - let alone all combined at the same time, on top of everything else we have already been dealing with. I had a few days of deep sadness, frustration, and confusion as to why so much could possibly be piled onto our plates right now. Why have I been through so much already at just 30 years old - more than many people go through in a long lifetime? These thoughts led to an impromptu pity party where I was the guest of honor. But, ultimately I needed to throw that party. I needed to let myself break down, release the tears and cries, and with that, release my worries, frustrations and fears to God.
I have come to truly detest the saying, "God doesn't give us more than we can handle" - I just don't believe that. I believe so many of us go through times where it is too much to handle, and that's when we need to rely on Him.
As the dust has settled over the last few days, the clouds of that deep sadness have lifted a bit, but I know I am headed straight into another potential storm on Thursday. I am praying (more like begging) for good news. I could really use a break right now - I need it more than ever.
Thank you for your continued prayers and words of encouragement. That is what helps me get through these difficult times. And thank you to those of you that have prayed for my Aunt Helen. She was taken off life support on Friday but is continuing to hold on. I am asking for prayers that she is able to let go, give her body the rest it deserves, and return to her family in Heaven who await her.
I will post on Thursday after my appointment with hopefully nothing but great news!
***REMINDER - There are TONS of great fundraising events happening to benefit the 3 Day team as they each try to raise at least $2,300 for the Susan G. Komen 3 Day For the Cure. Please check out the details and attend if you are able!
First up, Zumba this Friday night....
THIS WEEKEND - HUGE Garage Sale at Becca's house. Lots of great stuff - not your average garage sale finds! Please visit 367 East Saratoga Street in Ferndale from 8-3pm on Saturday and Sunday.
Next Thursday, July 19th - Fundraiser at Rosie O'Grady's in downtown Ferndale. Please join us starting at 6pm for all you can eat pizza and salad buffet out on the front patio for just $15. There will also be a silent auction and 50/50 raffle. Please pass this invite along to all your friends and family - it will be a great time!
The following week, come join us for some yoga!.....
We are also continuing to sell the adorable kids apparel as well! Please contact me for orders or you can place an order directly from Brinley's website at
http://littleonesforacure.blogspot.com. The onesies are available in 12, 18 and 24 months (special order at no additional cost, 3, 6 or 9 months) and the t's are available in 2T, 3T and 4T sizes.
If you would rather make a donation directly to the 3 Day team, please visit the link here.
and pick a team member to donate to. Thank you for your support!
Last but not least, my dear friend Kyle is once again participating in the 30 mile Ride For the Cure in Ann Arbor on August 4th. Please consider helping her reach her goal by donating here.
I have to start off by giving a huge, "Thank You!" to all of you that have helped rally around us and boost my spirits lately. Since I shared the last blog post, I have received so many thoughtful cards, messages, and calls from friends and family. I can't tell you how much that means to Mike and I - and how it does truly help us remember how many people are praying for us and how many of you want to help us in any way you can. I truly, truly appreciate it so much and don't know what I would do without the incredible support system that we are so blessed to have!
We have been so busy lately trying to juggle my work schedule, many photography gigs, Mike's strength and conditioning camps that he is running, taking care of the pup and the house, managing medical billing errors and paperwork, maintaining our healthy diets, getting enough sleep, and trying to make time to just relax and enjoy the summer with friends and family. I really make an effort to try my best to not stress about things like I used to. So what if the house is a little messy - or if my laundry has piled up to the ceiling - or if I fell behind on my paperwork at the clinic. Who cares! None of it is the end of the world and all that important in the scheme of things. I know that when I feel stressed or overwhelmed, I carry it throughout my entire body. My shoulders and upper traps feel tense and painful, my back aches, my stomach is upset, and I get a headache. Not only do I feel bad physically and mentally when I am stressed, but there are many, many published studies that document the damaging effects that stress can have on a body that is already fighting cancer - especially a hormonally driven cancer, such as mine. High levels of cortisol (the hormone that sky rockets when your body is stressed) leads to such problems as impaired cognitive performance, suppressed thyroid function, blood sugar imbalances such as hyperglycemia, decreased bone density, decreased muscle tissue, higher blood pressure, and lowered immunity and inflammatory responses in the body --which we all know are two huge things that I need to avoid in order to stay healthy. So bottom line is, we all need to let go of the stress. It's so harmful to our bodies and our spirits.
Speaking of letting go of the stress, I was so grateful that we had a little mini vacation last weekend and spent a few days up north in Traverse City. It was so relaxing and fun - and the farthest thing from stressful. Interestingly enough, I experienced no back pain! We were there to celebrate our friend Erin's wedding (which was beautiful!), and it was also nice to have some extra time to just enjoy each other and our friends, and to explore a part of the state that we absolutely love!
A few more fun pics I captured via Instagram on my phone...
This weekend we will be celebrating my cousin Devon's wedding and I am looking forward to some fun family time! Next week brings my scans which of course is always an anxiety ridden time but I am trying my best to not get myself too worked up about it. We would especially appreciate your continued prayers during that time.
If I could also make one more prayer request - my Aunt Helen suffered a terrible accident on Monday of this week. She is now in a coma after having half of her skull removed due to severe swelling and bleeding in her brain. The doctors said that it was too late but she is a fighter and still hanging on. Please keep her and my family in your prayers. Thank you very much!
I also wanted to share a few quick notes about the 3 Day for the Cure which is coming up on August 17! My friends have organized a few fundraisers that I wanted to tell you all about. There will be a Zumba fundraiser at Royal Oak High School on Friday, July 13. If you were there last year, you know how much fun this is!
The team will also be hosting a garage sale at Becca's house on Saturday, July 14 and Sunday, July 15 from 8am-3pm. We will be selling all sorts of good stuff - including great furniture and gently worn clothes. All proceeds will go directly to the 3 Day team's fundraising efforts. Becca's address is 367 East Saratoga, in Ferndale.
We are also selling some great items for the kiddos in honor of breast cancer awareness. There are onesies, t-shirts, and bibs available with all proceeds going towards the 3 Day as well. Shirts and onesies are $15 and bibs are $10. Many sizes available. Comment below with your contact info or message me if you are interested in placing an order.
Hope everyone is having a great week!
I guess once I had a taste of the sweet freedom after surgery, there was no keeping me down any longer. Ever since the nausea and soreness settled down, it seems like life has returned to it's usual hectic pace. No complaints here though - that's the kind of life that feels most 'normal' to me anyway. And I will always be grateful to be busy since that is a true indication that I am feeling good!
A belated Happy Mother's Day to all of you amazing mommas out there! I was able to spend that day hosting brunch for the fam over at our house and then heading out to GG's to celebrate with her, my aunts, uncles, and cousins. There aren't many things I can say about my incredible Momma that I haven't already gushed about in previous posts. All I know is that I would be lost without her, and Mike and I are beyond grateful to have her in our lives and help support us through all of the ups and downs of the past year, in particular. She deserves much more recognition than one special day allows! We love you Momma! ♥
I am also so grateful to have some other pretty amazing women in my life too...especially my grandma GG, and my Godmother, my Aunt Carol. Happy Mother's Day to you both, too! Love you!
Last Monday, I had my first follow up appointment with Dr. M since surgery on May 4th. He was pleased with how everything looks and how I have been feeling. Of course, I had to badger him and ask if I can please get back to working out and doing everything around the house that I want to do. He gave me the green light to go back to the gym but I am not able to do anything with my arms for another 4 weeks - no lifting weights, no pushing, no pulling, no picking up friends babies....oops, might have cheated on that last one a few times! ;) It is driving me nuts to not be able to do what I want, but I am trying my best to be a good little patient and make sure that everything heals just as it is intended to.
Last Wednesday, I had the privilege of being invited onto the field at Comerica Park during the national anthem and first pitch at the Tigers Game. It was such a neat experience to join other breast cancer survivors as the Tigers honored us with their "Going To Bat Against Breast Cancer" game. I met up with some of my YSC friends there as well. We wore the shirts that the YSC team is wearing for the Race for the Cure - it's pretty astounding to see the ages of our diagnoses on our shirts!
I was able to capture a picture of myself on the scoreboard of me taking a picture of the scoreboard! ha-sounds confusing, I know. Can you see where I circled myself in the pic below?
Wednesday night at Comerica was a blast! Then first thing Thursday morning, I headed to Karmanos for my monthly injections into my abdomen. In addition to that, I was asked to participate in an interview with our local ABC news affiliate, WXYZ Channel 7. The super sweet and lovely anchor, Alicia Smith, interviewed me. She wanted to know my story and what I have been through, about why I wanted to help start a young women's support group, and why I participate in the Race for the Cure and what it means to me to have others support me there as well. It was a fun morning and one more way that I am trying to help raise awareness for young adults faced with cancer. I haven't heard when it will air but it's going to be sometime this week before the race on Saturday morning. Channel 7 will be interviewing me again live at the race with my entire team there with me!
Here I am with Alicia Smith, who couldn't have been any nicer and made me feel much more relaxed on camera.
The rest of the week and weekend was filled with many Kettering baseball games, a trip to Eastern Market for flower day, and spending time with two of my favorite munchkins - Emma and Alice. Luckily for me, I have some pretty cute models to practice my photography skills with. :)
I also wanted to mention that a group of my wonderful friends are at it again this year and have formed their "Meghan Malley Rally" team for the 3 Day For A Cure event in August. I am so proud of them and honored that they want to dedicate their time and energy to this cause in my name. They are not only focused on supporting me, but on helping to generate more awareness for metastatic breast cancer and the importance for further research to help find a CURE!
Their fundraising efforts are underway and if you like to bowl, and love to support a great cause, we have an event for you! Check out the flyer for more details and click here to visit their team page to either join our team or donate! I am not an official participant, but I will be out there attempting 10 miles each day, so come join us August 17-19!
Keep your eyes out for me on Channel 7 news this week and come join us Saturday morning at the Detroit Race for the Cure! It is a wonderful event! Hope everyone is having a great week and have a fun Memorial Day weekend!
ps. - I would like to give a very special thank you to Dr. Schenden and his staff at Schenden's Medical Day Spa. Last week I was completely blown away by a letter that Dr. Schenden wrote me. He told me that some of his staff have been following the blog and have been touched by my story. Dr. Schenden mentioned that they knew one of the "30 before 30" items I wasn't able to cross off my list yet was to get a massage for Mike. Well, Dr. Schenden so graciously sent us two gift certificates for spa services at his medical day spa! One for Mike, and one gift certificate for me too! It was so unexpected and I am so grateful. People often do not realize the impact that one little note, or one kind gesture can have. I was brought to tears by this act of kindness and I am truly so thankful that such compassionate and thoughtful people are out there in the world doing things to help brighten someone else's day. Thank you so much to Dr. Schenden and his staff - It truly meant so much to us!
I am not even sure where to begin...this past weekend was one of the most incredible, emotional and inspirational experiences of my life. I have spent the last couple of days pondering how to write about the Susan G. Komen 3 Day For The Cure, and I have finally realized that there is just no possible way to put into words everything that this weekend entailed and how much it impacted me. As much as I may try, I could never accurately describe the emotions I felt during this weekend, and during the Opening Ceremony in particular- surrounded by my 9 friends of Team Meghan Malley Rally, Mom & Doug, Mike and Kyle - watching those left behind carry flags for their wives, mothers, daughters and friends that they lost - witnessing the incredibly strong & fierce survivors raise their joined hands in an act of victory and celebration - and starting the 60 mile journey together after a tearful team huddle. To be honest, the Opening Ceremony was more difficult and more emotional than I expected it to be - definitely the hardest part of the weekend to get through. It was extremely tough for me to stand in the midst of hundreds of women and men walking in memory of a loved one and wondering if one day my friends would be walking in my memory, rather than in my honor as a survivor. Although the start of this amazing weekend was quite overwhelming, it was also filled with encouragement, optimism and hope.
9 friends, 3 days, 60 miles, 1 goal...to find a cure for breast cancer!
A group of incredible survivors surrounding the memorial flag honoring all of those that have lost their fight
The most adorable member of Team Meghan Malley Rally - hands down! :)
The girls were flexing those muscles to show off their new pink ribbon "tatoos" during Friday's lunch break
The girls kicked Day 1's booty! After starting the walk together, Mike, Andy, Andrew and I then met the team for lunch and cheered them on as they started the second half of the day. They completed the day in great spirits, full of energy and inspiration. Brin stayed with us at night to take care of Andrew instead of camping, so it was wonderful to hear her stories from the first day - all of the fabulous people they met, the community of cheerleaders they encountered, and the walkers that asked to hear the story of who she was walking for.
On Saturday, we headed out to Plymouth to host a cheering station at the Plymouth Cultural Center. We cheered on the amazing 3 Day walkers from 10:30 to 2:30pm and were joined by so many of our family and friends! It was so incredible to have all of you join us on Saturday, and I can't tell you enough how much that meant to me - to not only have you support me, but support all of the women and men that are fighting for a cure!
Team Meghan Malley Rally looking as strong as ever during Saturday's lunch break!
Many members of my old RIM gang...so thankful to have worked with such amazing people and that I am able to call all of them my friends
My beautiful & incredibly supportive sorority sisters - love you girls!
My biggest cheerleader! ♥
Taking part in that cheering station was truly an unforgettable experience. You would never believe how many people saw our t-shirts and said, "Oh I know Meghan, her team told me all about her!", or "How is Meghan doing?", "I am praying for Meghan". When people saw that I was standing right there, they proceeded to give me huge hugs, ask how I was doing, tell me to keep fighting, and let me know I am forever in their prayers. It was amazing to hear complete strangers tell me they read my blog or that they have heard about me from someone else they know. They knew all about me, my story, my diagnosis, my treatment schedule...it was amazing. I felt like I had a million people wrapping their arms around me in love and prayer and it was a feeling I will hold onto for the rest of my life. It was a truly special day!
My fierce walker warriors were still going strong after 40 miles but they were definitely starting to have some aches, pains, and a few blisters pop up by the end of Saturday's walk. But they didn't complain. They continued to share with me the love and support offered by other participants of the 3 Day, the other survivors they met, and the overwhelming emotions they all felt throughout the day along their journey.
The start of the last leg of their journey was accompanied by some light rain but that never even dampened their spirits. I met them for lunch on Sunday with the hopes to boost their spirits and give them some inspiration for the final few miles. I expected to find my friends exhausted and possibly in pain, definitely in need of a pep talk. They didn't even come close to needing it - they were filled with excitement, pride, and joy and ready to tackle those last few miles! I was totally amazed and couldn't wait to meet them at the finish line.
We arrived at the Ford Motor Company World Headquarters on Sunday afternoon to celebrate the completion of this amazing 3 day, 60 mile journey. Team Meghan Malley Rally were total rockstars and finished this incredible feat in one piece, only a few blisters here and there, and wearing smiles from ear to ear! I couldn't have been more proud to have my name displayed across their shirts.
I was also so touched to see more family and friends come down to the Closing Ceremony to be there with us. Everything always seems so much better when you are surrounded by so many family and friends and I can't say thank you enough for that! The Closing Ceremony was also an emotional one but I was very happy to also feel like it was celebratory and inspirational. I was so proud of my girls for taking part in this and Mike and I were totally inspired to participate in the 3 Day in one way or another from here on out!
After the beautiful Closing Ceremony, we all headed over to Mom & Doug's house where we were joined by many, many more family and friends! It was so wonderful to walk out the back door and see the deck and yard filled with all of our loved ones. It was a perfect way to end this amazing weekend!
A group of great friends and some of my favorite ladies!
My sweet little buddy, Andrew. I had the best week snuggling this adorable guy...and how great is his bib that his momma, Brinley made! I love it!
THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart to each and every one of you that in one way or another contributed to this incredible cause and unforgettable weekend! Thank you for your donations, your cheerleading, your hugs, your well wishes, your time.....the list goes on and on. I hope that I have thanked each of you personally when I have seen you, but if I haven't, please know how grateful I am for your support and the support you have shown Mike, Mom, Doug, Jeff and the rest of my family.
I can never thank the amazing Meghan Malley Rally 3 Day team enough for everything they did for me this summer...Brinley, Kara, Becca, Lindsay, Nancy, Stacy, Melanie, Amanda and Nikki. Your incredible efforts raised over $30,000 to find a cure for breast cancer!!! Through all the fundraising events and the actual 3 Day weekend, you guys have made me feel so loved and appreciated all at the same time making me smile, laugh and forget about this terrible disease for awhile. For that, I am grateful! You were total warriors during this event and I can't wait to walk 60 miles with you in the future!
An extra special thank you to those wonderful family and friends that traveled this past weekend to be here to support us. Brinley, Andy and Andrew came all the way from Jensen Beach, Florida - Melanie and Ben from Cleveland - Amanda, Nick, Liz, Nancy, Chelsea, Beth, Ben, Joe and Lauren from Chicago - Aunt Clare, Beth and Brigetta from North Carolina - Jenny from Grand Rapids. I hope I am not forgetting anyone. The fact that you guys took time out of your busy lives to physically be here to give us hugs and show your support, seriously meant so much to Mike and I! We are so incredibly blessed to have all of you as our family and friends.
Another special thank you to my mom's incredible friends, Barb and Roni for working their tails off in the kitchen all night on Sunday so that my mom could enjoy herself at the party and not stress about all the behind the scenes stuff. Your support of my mom means more to me than you will ever know - thank you so very much!
Lastly, thank you to my AMAZING momma, Jan and my stepdad, Doug for all of their love, support and hard work this past weekend. For spending all weekend supporting the 3 Day team and other walkers, and for opening up their home to host TONS of our friends and family on Sunday. You guys are the best and we would be lost without you.
The Susan G. Komen 3 Day For The Cure slogan couldn't touch any closer to home for me..."Everyone deserves a lifetime". I believe I not only deserve a lifetime but I have promised myself and Mike that I will go to the ends of the Earth to make sure I achieve that. I am so thankful for this incredible event which has provided me an extra dose of inspiration, motivation, and encouragement. Thank you so much to all of you for giving me hope! As my beautiful Godmother, Aunt Carol shared with me, "If you have faith, you have hope and if you have hope, you have everything!" ♥
Well, there are so many other things that have happened over the past week or so that I want to share...updates from my oncologist, meeting with my plastic surgeon, upcoming tests, meeting other young women with breast cancer, the Johnson's week long visit, and so much more! Check back frequently over the next couple of weeks because we have a lot going on that I want to keep everyone up to date about.
I am off to get some more rest - haven't quite caught up from all the busy festivities over the past week! Have a great weekend everyone.
ps. SAVE THE DATE: My fabulous friend, Patty has been planning an incredible benefit concert for us which will take place on SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 25 at The Berkley Front in downtown Berkley from 4-10pm. The event will showcase some amazing local bands, there will be a silent auction and all sorts of other great things. Many more details to come but mark your calendars now! Please contact Patty Labella at 248-752-3104 or email@example.com if you have any items or services to donate for the silent auction or would like to help out in any other way. Check back to the blog soon for more updates!
It was hot and humid without any sort of breeze to give relief. The route weaved in and out of towns, and up and down steep hills throughout the greater Ann Arbor area for 30 miles. She rode completely by herself, for nearly 2 1/2 hours, after spending weeks raising over $2,000...because that's the kind of friend she is. Kyle is the kind of friend that would do anything she could to help you, to be there for you, to show you that she cares. She has been there for me in every way possible throughout this journey - from a simple call or text to say she was thinking of me, to spending hours creating the most thoughtful and meaningful gifts, to photographing such intimate and emotional moments like when I shaved my hair. And then she goes and does this...the 2nd Annual Susan G. Komen Ride For The Cure.
It was a great event with a wonderful turn out of supporters in which $250,000 was raised to stay within the mid-Michigan chapter of the Susan G. Komen organization. We met a lot of wonderful people, including many survivors that were eager to share their success stories with me and offer hope and encouragement. I was interviewed on camera for a Komen promotional video, and it turned out to be a much more emotional experience for me than I ever imagined it would be. As my voice cracked and I got choked up while speaking, Kyle hugged me a little tighter and helped me get through it. She is just that type of person - the kind that will stand beside you, hold your hand, and help you get through anything, without looking for any recognition or attention for herself.
Kyle did an amazing job and blazed through those 30 miles. Check out some of the images I captured from Saturday's event...
Photo credit: Kyle Dorcey
Kyle, I couldn't be more proud of you and grateful to have you as one of my very best friends. You completely touched me heart by doing this in my honor and I was so excited to be there to cheer you on! Thank you for your constant love and support - it means the world to me!
I would also like to give a huge thank you to all of you that came out to our last 3 Day fundraiser on Friday night. We had a blast doing a Zumba workout and a relaxing yoga cool down. Thank you so much to my mom's co-worker Lori for giving us this great idea, and to her sister Maggie who taught a super fun and energetic class! Maggie, thank you so much for donating your time for our fundraiser - I had such a fun time. It felt so great to feel a little bit more like myself again and to workout with everyone - although I will admit that I have paid for it a bit since with fatigue and some soreness....but it was well worth it! Thanks to everyone that came and spent their Friday night with us for such a good cause. Sorry we missed some of you in our group shot.
Well, I can't believe it but the Susan G. Komen 3 Day For A Cure is now upon us. I am so excited to have so many friends and family gather together this weekend to support me, support the Meghan Malley Rally team, and support this cause. It will mean so much to me to see so many of you there throughout the weekend. I truly cannot thank all of you enough for everything you have done to help make Team Meghan Malley Rally such a success - whether you have helped organize a fundraiser, donated your time or talents, come out to show your support, or donated online....it is all so very much appreciated!
The 3 Day walk is more than a philanthropic event for me. It has given me something to look forward to, something to focus my energy on, and even more importantly, it has given me HOPE! I am so grateful to Brinley, Kara, Melanie, Amanda, Lindsay, Becca, Nancy, Stacy and Nikki for dedicating so much of your time and energy to this...as I have told you before, you will never truly know the depths of my gratitude.
I hope to see many of you this weekend, especially at my mom's house on Sunday night. Please come by because I would love to give each of you that follow this blog and hold me in your prayers, a huge hug and heartfelt thanks in person. I truly don't know how I could do this without all of your love and support.
Let the walking begin!
It is so easy to be scared - actually, to feel terrified by my diagnosis. Although I avoid statistics as much as I possibly can, I have read them. I know what the typical prognosis is for someone with my type and stage of cancer. To say it's "not good" would be a huge understatement. I know what I am up against and I am fully aware that I need to do all I can to be in that small group - that tiny percentage - of women that make it - and make it for a long time! However, I am no stranger to fitting into these unlikely groups. I am now part of the 10% of women that are diagnosed with breast cancer to have the Invasive Lobular form, the 6% of women that are diagnosed as stage IV right from the start, and the mere 5% of women that are diagnosed with breast cancer before the age of 40. If I can be part of these rare groups, who is to say I can't be part of the small percentage of young women with stage IV cancer that go into remission and lead a long, healthy, happy life! This is my ultimate goal and driving force behind everything I do!
Lately, when I become scared, I have started to read the most current research in the area of metastatic breast cancer (aka stage IV). Sadly, this is an area that has been very underserved regarding research and clinical trials. In the past, the common medical opinion regarding treatment of women diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer was to begin palliative care and tell them to enjoy their life while they can - for the next year or so- and that was it. No aggressive treatment, no clinical trials, no cure = no hope. Thankfully, the approach and mindset of the oncology community in regards to metastatic breast cancer is finally evolving. More conversations have been initiated, more treatment is being attempted, and slowly but surely, more research is being conducted. The statistics regarding survival rates of those of us with "incurable", metastatic breast cancer are improving 1-2% each year - I know this doesn't sound like much, but it's a statistic that's moving in the right direction and I will take it! Oncologists aren't just shipping us off to hospice at diagnosis - we are being treated aggressively with the goal of remission. Even if we don't technically have a "cure" for metastatic breast cancer, there are many amazing stories out there of women (and men) living many years with this as a chronic illness - similar to managing other chronic illnesses such as diabetes.
In addition to research for metastatic breast cancer, Susan G. Komen For a Cure is also invested in research regarding better diagnostic tools to allow for early detection of breast cancer. This is also an area close to my heart because Invasive Lobular Breast Cancer in particular is very difficult to pick up on imaging tests. It is often missed on mammograms and goes undiagnosed until it has become very advanced. It is so imperative that we find a way to diagnose this earlier and avoid the onset of metastases. And finally, research regarding young women diagnosed with breast cancer is another area which is often overlooked. I have already met way too many women under the ago of 40 diagnosed with breast cancer - there are too many of us! Yet, so much of the focus and research is geared towards older women. Young women like me are often overlooked, blown off, and misdiagnosed because we don't fit the typical profile of a woman at risk. Unfortunately, survival rates of young women with breast cancer haven't improved that much over the years - and this needs to be changed! We need more research in regards to genetic mutations, early detection and treatment of young women. My doctors are confident I have a genetic mutation that has caused this, but despite numerous genetic tests I have had so far, we cannot determine the mutation responsible. Although great strides have been made, we have a long way to go in order to get control of this devastating disease.
This is why fundraising is so important to me. I am confident that we are on the brink of great discoveries, particularly regarding managing and possibly curing metastatic breast cancer. With each dollar we raise for the Susan G. Komen For the Cure, we are funding research that will help prevent, treat, and cure this awful disease. It is your generous donations that will allow this work to be continued for many years - and your amazing contributions that give me hope that a cure for metastatic breast cancer will eventually be found. I just need to fight hard enough to stick around to see that day.
If you would like to read more about the research efforts being made through your donations to Susan G. Komen For a Cure, please click here. I also wanted to share two areas of research reported on Komen's website that I am especially pleased about:
Research Highlight: EARLY DETECTION
We have provided more than $50M to support research to identify new screening tools, enhance the efficacy of existing screening tests such as mammography, and to improve screening delivery to find breast cancer early when it is most treatable.
Impacts: Komen research explored the characteristics of MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) as a screening tool and today MRI in addition to mammography is recommended for women at high risk for breast cancer – those with a family history or gene mutation. These women are at greater risk of developing breast cancer before age 40 and are more likely to have dense breasts, which can reduce the sensitivity of mammography. Komen research also led to development of new technologies like molecular breast imaging (MBI) which can detect three times as many cancers as film mammography among women with dense breasts.
Exciting research: Our research continues to address important new challenges, such as:
We have provided nearly than $28M since 2006 to support research seeking to understand the processes by which tumor cells migrate to other parts of the body and to identify therapeutic targets for stopping this process.
Impacts: Komen research supported early work by Judah Folkman, Nancy Davidson and others to understand angiogenesis, a process critical in metastasis by which tumors stimulate a blood supply for their continued growth. The first anti-angiogenic drug, Avastin, was approved for use by the FDA in 2004. Komen research also recently led to the discovery of a gene, metadherin, that promotes metastasis in 30 to 40 percent of breast tumors, providing an exciting potential target for therapy.
Exciting research: Our research continues to advance our understanding of the types and sources of signals tumor cells receive that trigger cell migration, and how the area around cells, called the extracellular matrix (EMC), changes to allow cells to start migrating. Examples of important new challenges in metastasis being addressed through our research include:
My incredible friends that have devoted their summer to fundraising and training for the 60 mile, 3 Day walk have two additional events planned to raise as much money as possible - our goal is to hit the $30,000 mark! This Sunday is the spa day at Aretee Day Spa in Grosse Pointe Woods from 3-9pm. Don't worry if you haven't RSVP'd, please just come by and get pampered for a great cause! You are welcome to come by at any time - no need for an appointment.
A week from Friday, please head over to Royal Oak High School to join us for a fun night of Zumba and yoga as we participate in our last fundraiser for the 3 Day For A Cure walk! We would love to see you there to help us reach our goal!
If you are unable to make it to one of these events, but would still like to make a donation to the Meghan Malley Rally team, please click here.
Another great event that I would like to share with you is the Susan G. Komen Ride For A Cure. My amazing friend Kyle is participating in this event on Saturday, August 6. She will be riding her bike for 30 miles throughout the Ann Arbor area in order to raise money for the Susan G. Komen organization. For more general information on this event, including the course map, please click here. If you would like to make a contribution to Kyle's fundraising efforts, please click here. Kyle, I am so proud of you and so grateful that you are doing this. I can't wait to come cheer you on!
I can't thank you all enough for your donations and support of all of our fundraising efforts. I promise that once I am able to get my own health stabilized, I will focus a great deal of my time and attention to spreading the word regarding early detection for high risk young women, and to further promote research towards metastatic disease!
I am looking forward to these next two fundraising efforts and I'm especially excited for the 3 Day event which starts on August 12! It will be incredible. More details soon to come on all the festivities of that weekend.
Have a fabulous weekend guys - I know I will! Can't beat spending time up north with some of my very best friends from high school. My girlfriends are seriously sunshine for my soul! We'll miss you Chels, Jen & Kel. ♥
One of the many new things I have noticed since not being at work is that I often have no clue what the date is. I now completely relate to my retired geriatric patients that always need help with the date while filling out their paperwork at the clinic. When you no longer write the date out each day while filling out documentation at work, it's easy to lose track. All of a sudden it has totally hit me that we are over half way through July! Where is the summer going?! I know I say it year after year...but man, it seems like time flies quicker and quicker the older I get. I consider "time" to be one of my best friends these days and I definitely want as much of it as I can possibly get! Although I would never wish it to fly by, there are certain circumstances that make me grateful that the passage of time is moving along fairly quick.
This past week marked the half way point of my chemotherapy treatments. Hallelujah! I now have 8 treatments behind me, and 8 more to go. Although I have voiced my frustrations about the intense fatigue chemo brings, I have never complained about going through these past 8 rounds- partially because I will go through anything that will help me beat this, and also because I know that things could always be worse. The first round of chemo was pretty rough for me, but I now look at that as a blessing in disguise. Feeling as awful as I did then, has allowed me to feel grateful for the mercy that has been shown to me during the seven rounds since. I have discovered that there is always something we can be thankful for in every circumstance, if we make the choice to see it. Although I am thankful for getting through this time as well as I have, I am not gonna lie - I am ready to make it to the chemo finish line! I am truly looking forward to tackling these next 8 rounds and giving my body a bit of a break that it definitely deserves.
This week was a busy one and filled with lots of time with friends - which is always a good thing. :) I am gradually getting better at slowing down, fitting in time to rest, and learning my new limitations - but when I am feeling pretty good, I like to take advantage of it! Last Monday, I drove for the first time in a long while and headed out to Ann Arbor to spend some time with one of my best friends, Julie & her sweet son Will. What's better than spending the day shopping, eating lunch at Zingerman's and playing with this adorable guy?!
The rest of the week was wonderfully busy and consisted of visits from Denise & her girls, Nikki, Aunt Bev and Uncle Herm. As well as dinner with Andrea, Julie C and Nichole, catching a movie with Andrea, hitting up the Royal Oak Antique & Garage Sale with Julie, dinner with Katie & Justin, and topping the weekend off by going to the Tiger's game with some of my best friends from PT school! Whew, busy bee!
I have also been working on plans for the weekend of the incredible 3 Day For A Cure walk. I am so excited and can't believe it's only 4 weeks away! I will post lots of details soon, but mark your calendars in advance for the weekend of August 12-14...if you are in town, it would be amazing to have as many of our friends and family there as possible to help us cheer on the walkers and celebrate this incredible cause. There will be opportunities to come out and join us each day of the weekend, and will culminate with a big party on Sunday night to celebrate and to allow us to show our thanks and appreciation to each and every one of you that has supported us along the way. I know it will be a very emotional and memorable weekend!
There are two great fundraisers remaining for the 3 Day team, and you don't want to miss them! Please see the flyer below for full details on the amazing spa day that Diana has put together. How can you pass up an excuse to get pampered while raising money for such a fabulous cause?! Check out the flyer to see all of the great services your donation will get you. Please do not forget to RSVP to Diana as soon as possible!
Our last fundraiser will be a super fun Zumba & Yoga class on Friday, August 5 at Royal Oak High School. It sounds like a great time! And don't worry...I can't handle a 90 minute workout anymore - so if you don't think you are up for it but want to come support us, you can hang out with me as I watch everyone else sweat. :)
As always, thank you for the continued prayers and support. Each week, without fail, something happens that amazes us due to the kindness and generosity of our friends, family, and even complete strangers. So many people have reached out to us, and there is no way we can ever truly thank you all enough for it. We just hope you know how much it means to us to hear from you and know you care.
I spent some time photographing my mom's beautiful garden this week. I have memories from as far back as I can remember of my mom spending hours upon hours in her flower beds all summer long, just like she still does today. My love and appreciation of flowers and gardening clearly comes from her and the gorgeous gardens she creates.
Hello there friends! Before jumping into this week's happenings, I want to send out a huge thank you for an event that took place last week....
Mike's friend Steve S, a fellow teacher at Kettering, is the advisor for Kettering's Robotics Team. The team is competing in three tournaments this summer, in which their robots have to complete a number of timed tasks while competing against other schools. The Kettering team blew us away when they told us that they were dedicating their summer tournaments to us! This not only included turning their green Kettering Captain logo to pink, but they designed awesome shirts with "Let’s Beat This Thing / Driving Robots for Meghan Malley" on the back. How cool is that?!
The Kettering Robotics Team (aka Team 3098) also teamed up with the Team 1528 – Monroe Trojan Robotics, who hosted the Michigan Area Robotics Competition (MARC), last Friday, June 24th, and they all decided to make the ENTIRE event a benefit for Mike and I! We were so honored and touched! The teams raised money through t-shirt sales, silent auction, and "Robots for a Cure" bracelets! There was also a "Survivor/Honor Night" on Friday where the tournament honored all those that have battled any type of cancer. We were incredibly disappointed that we couldn't attend after receiving instructions to avoid public places after finding out that my counts were so low last week. Steve, Kettering Captains Robotics Team, and all participants of MARC...we cannot thank you enough for honoring us in this way. We are so deeply humbled and overwhelmed by your generosity and thoughtfulness!!! Thank you a million times over! ps. Congrats Kettering Captains on placing 4th out of 48 teams!!!
Thank you so much to Steve's wife, Angie for taking these pictures so we could feel like we were there last Friday!
It was because of amazing events like this that I was so disappointed about my "house arrest" since last Thursday! I am beyond ecstatic to report that I am now free as a bird!!! Yippee!!! Yahoo!!! My counts made a HUGE leap this week and Mike & I almost did a jumping high five in chemo this morning upon hearing my blood work report. It's so warped that we get so excited about being able to get chemo, right?!
My white blood cells shot up from 1,800 to 5,800, my hemoglobin rose from 9.0 to 10.3, and my neutrophils soared to 3,900 from a sad 300 last week! What a difference a week of complete and utter rest can do!
We were actually pretty nervous while driving to Chemo-land this morning because I have actually been pretty sick this week while attempting to fight off a wicked head cold. This annoying cold creeped in on Saturday after I ventured outside for a bit to walk to the pup around the block. Since Saturday, the cold has brought something new and exciting each and every day....complete head congestion, runny nose like a faucet, constant sneezing, and the finale...a hacking cough to the point of dry heaving. Oh, the joy of a summer cold mixed with no white blood cells to fight the pesky thing off! Thankfully, I felt a bit better this morning and the incessant cough stopped in time to arrive at chemo. Mike and I were worried if they heard that cough, we wouldn't make it too far past the front door! Just goes to show that you never know what is going to happen - felt good last week and had lousy counts, felt crappy this week and counts were much better than expected. Who knows?! Bottom line is...the value of rest and prayer cannot be underestimated! Thank you to my hubby in particular for scolding me every time I tried to push my limits, and thank you to all of you for your continued prayers for me to get back on track with treatment!
Now that my counts are up, I am no longer on "lock down" at home and I couldn't be happier! I can now go join the land of the living and most importantly, spend 4th of July weekend with family and friends! I have promised nurse Jan, aka Momma, that I will continue to be extremely cautious of germs, and not push my luck now that I have the green light to go back out in public.
Speaking of going out, I am very excited to let you all know about two more fundraising events for the 3 Day For a Cure event this August! I believe there are only three more events left before the race, so get in on the action while you can. I must admit, we are a pretty fun group to fundraise with:) Check out the flyers below for details - hope you can make it! I always look forward to seeing friends & family at these awesome fundraisers!
The "Meghan Malley Rally" 3 Day Team continues to do an AMAZING job raising money for breast cancer research and Susan G. Komen For the Cure. They have actually reached their team goal today of over $20,000!!! However, the fundraising continues in order to assure that each individual participant is able to reach the $2,300 needed to participate in the event.
Kara has a great ladies night planned at her house on July 8th. Tons of great vendors will be there with great merchandise, such as jewelry, purses, food products and more! The best part is they have all generously agreed to donate a portion of the proceeds to the 3 Day team! Can't wait to check it all out & see you guys there!
Another fabulous friend of mine, Diana M. has put together this amazing spa day at the end of July. It sounds incredible so get out your calendars and mark it down now! Check out the flyer below for all the great details on how your donation can treat you to a relaxing day at the spa! IMPORTANT: Please make sure to RSVP to the event at the number listed below, so Diana knows how many massage therapists and nail techs she will need. Come enjoy an afternoon of relaxation benefiting the fabulous 3 Day For A Cure team! Thank you Diana! ♥
Thank you again for all of your prayers for elevated blood counts this week! They clearly worked and I am so grateful. I guess the ole' body just needed a break last week, huh? Normally, we usually go out of town every 4th of July with a great group of some of our best friends. We have made a collective decision to keep the celebration local this year and keep it a little more low-key, and I must say I am pretty excited about not hitting the road again. In addition to that, I am THRILLED that Mike and I will be able to head to my Aunt Ree's house on Saturday to see many of my aunts, uncles, and cousins - especially Becca, Jon, Nate and Teagan from Denver! YAY! I can't wait to see you guys!
Each night, I always take a minute to think about what I am grateful for. Lately, I am so grateful for all of you, your prayers, and support. I am also grateful for the opportunity to spend Independence Day Weekend with our family and friends - enjoying sunshine, cookouts, and bonfires! Life is good!
Happy 4th of July!
This guy has been keeping me great company this past week. Have you ever seen a cuter furry face?! I mean, come on - he is undeniably the most adorable pup on the plant. (I guess I may be slightly biased) ;)
Hustled outside after my post-chemo nap to snap a few shots of the garden before I lost the sunlight. Spending time alone in my flower beds is something I find so therapeutic and relaxing - can't wait to feel well enough to do it again soon!
My blog to keep you all