Inspired – Elly Mayday

I recently had an article shared with me about a Canadian model named Elly Mayday and her battle with Ovarian Cancer. The article talked about how one of the companies she is working with handled it (which I give them a HUGE kudos for) as well as about Elly and how she is facing everything herself. That article can be featured HERE.

I know I sometimes take my time between posts on here, but when something like this comes up, something truly inspirational, I have to drop everything and share it with the rest of you! I know when I was going through treatment and decided to keep working people couldn’t wrap their head around it. It was hard to explain that to me it was a matter of not letting Cancer win, not letting it change my life or my day to day routine. At the time I hadn’t heard much about Ovarian Cancer at all, let alone about others fighting the disease.

Reading this article brought me back to that stage, to those thoughts and to figuring out what was going to work for me through treatment. Elly is an absolutely BEAUTIFUL person inside and out, and I am so happy to see that she’s not letting Cancer hold her back or steal any of that from her! Following along on her Facebook page (HERE) I have had a chance to not only see her beautiful photos, but to see her her smile throughout everything.

She asked on her Facebook page for her fans to write her snailmail if they want to reach out to her right now, and I am going to do that for sure, but I also wanted to put a little shout out on here. Elly Mayday you are an inspriation to many. Thank you for standing up, sharing your story and helping to get the word out on a disease that is WAY too often forgotten about, swept under the rug and ignored!

I should also add before finishing this blog up that I want to give a huge shoutout as well to the company mentioned in the above link, Forever Yours Lingerie who not only has stood by Elly Mayday through this battle, but is doing their own part to put this disease out there to remind everyone that it IS a concern and we SHOULD be aware!

Walk of Hope 2013

Alright, I know my blogging has died of quite a bit recently. That’s largely due to the number of things we’ve had going on! On top of getting ourselves organized for the Expedition of Hope and working on fundraising for that, my husband and I are also both on the Walk of Hope committee for our local walk! 

This morning I watched an amazing group of people young and old gather at Malden Park in Windsor for our walk. I watched tears and laughter, hugging and crying, Zumba and memorial photos…. What a rollercoaster of emotions and what an amazing day! Thank you SO much to my fellow committee members, as well as to AM800, especially Lisa Williams for joining me as an emcee this morning. 

I just wanted to take a moment to share a few photos of what today was to me: 

Up at 0’Dark thirty to gather with the rest of our committee and volunteers to get everything set up (Tim Hortons in hand lol)

1185911_552223201492162_64886865_n

Some of the fun we had set up around including decorations, teal photobooth props and our banner which made an appearance for more signatures today: 

1235099_10151813081409367_1347185074_n1236852_10151813081654367_1782688347_n1234577_10151813084179367_763846797_n

 

1175694_382898065173052_808566419_n1240633_10151813082799367_1305558234_n

 

My husband and I during the set up: 

1238968_10151813083504367_1792296009_n

 

Emceeing with Lisa Williams from AM800: 

559252_383142228481969_1525589722_n

 

Also I had brought a little something special of my own. Last Friday was Wear Teal Day. I belong to a group of women that first met while planning our weddings on The Knot with one thing in common, weddings in September 2012. We have since become amazingly close despite living across Canada and the US (and one person even in Greece). For Wear Teal Day these amazing ladies showed their support to me in DROVES posting photos of themselves, their husbands, their children… all wearing Teal! I took these pictures and created a collage to bring with me so that I could bring some of my greatest supporters to walk with me today: 

1235256_383142288481963_1399728158_n

 

What a day to be reminded of just how blessed we are! 

 

Saying Goodbye

I originally wrote this blog post on Saturday, but debated whether or not to post it. I wasn’t sure if it might be too negative, or if maybe it was too personal. After thinking about it I’ve decided that if there is anyone else out there feeling these same emotions, the best thing I can do is post this and let it be known that you’re not alone… 

Today I said goodbye to a Warrior… A member of a Women’s Cancer Support Group that I belong to who has fought a LONG hard battle against Breast Cancer. I watched her family trying to stay strong as they faced the people who were there, lines of friends/family telling them how sorry they were, and that they were there to give them support. I held the hand of a fellow survivor as we wiped tears from our eyes.

I came home to my somewhat messy little house that we haven’t taken the time to clean, annoyed at myself for letting things slack. After tidying the house for a bit, and starting to make homemade soup I started to cry again.

I was overcome… Overcome with feelings of loss and grief, with sadness, but also with a guilt. Why is it that this beautiful woman, this amazing mother to two children, super woman wife who could keep up with her busy family and keep everything in order, this kind heart, lost her battle where as I have won mine? What makes me special? What do I have to offer that could even BEGIN to make this make sense, to make right the second chance that God has given me.

I stood there, spoon in hand, stirring my homemade soup on the stove distractedly while running through a list in my mind of things in my life I’ve done right, and things I’ve done wrong. I started to weigh out my impact on the world, and what I’ve taken from the world.

I know that I shouldn’t feel guilty, I am in no way responsible for what happened, but the emotions that come with something like this are sometimes SO difficult. I know that with time we’ll make our way through the grieving process, and possibly the hardest thing to accept is that I know that life is going to go on for myself, for that family, for everyone.

I have a lot of days of celebration. I embrace this life, take advantage of every chance I can to live it to its fullest. Some days however, like today, I have to let myself cry as I say goodbye…

My Biggest Gift…

Last night I  attended my first committee meeting for our local OCC Walk of Hope. This sparked a big conversation on the ride to the meeting with my husband about just what our biggest gift is that we have to give the world to help fight this horrible disease. We knew we wanted to volunteer our time where it could be most used… Are we organized? Are we creative? Do we have the ‘right’ connections? What did we have to give?

I realized something in that moment. My biggest gift in this fight against Ovarian Cancer is me… My story, the reality of what it means, how it affects you, the fact it CAN and DOES happen to young women who don’t even know it exists!

What bigger gift do I have to give to those that are fighting, have fought or someday may have to fight this monster then my voice?

So for anyone reading this that may have an experience. Anyone who has fought this monster, is fighting this monster, held the hand of someone as they fought this monster…. Whatever your experience may be – Speak out. Be loud and be proud! Make a difference by making it known.

The biggest obstacle we face, the thing that gives this Cancer its biggest power is that no one knows. Lets turn the tides and take back control of our bodies!