1. How did you become connected with Hope Scarves?
I saw a story about Hope Scarves on Facebook shortly after I was diagnosed with cancer and shared it with my friends and family. After I shared the story, several of my friends and family members sent scarves to me.
2. If you donated a scarf please share what this experience meant to you or if you received a scarf and story please share how this impacted your healing journey?
I have received 4 scarves from Hope Scarves since beginning my journey in April. Each of my chemotherapy cycles consist of an inpatient treatment, where I receive IV and IP chemo, and an outpatient treatment, where I receive only IP chemo. The inpatient treatment makes me feel the worse – I usually end up on the couch for several days after each one. It is really hard to have to tell my kids I can’t do things with them because I am sick, or to have to miss their ball games. It is during this part of my treatments that I feel discouraged and depressed. Fortunately, my scarves have all come during these times. The stories that accompany the scarves have given me hope and helped to lift my spirits. It is so encouraging to know that all of these other women have been through something similar and have come out of it so strong. Whenever I feel myself losing hope, I think about their stories and know that if they can do it, I can too.
3. What are the things that provided hope and strength to you throughout your battle?
For me, my support system has been a major source of strength. I have a big family and they are always ready and willing to help me in whatever way they can. I also have a big church family that has been praying constantly and providing encouragement throughout my journey.
4. Where are you currently on your cancer journey? Tell us how you are living life over cancer.
I am currently in the middle of my chemo regimen. I am in the middle of my third cycle and I have to complete six cycles. I am trying to live life as normal as I can by spending time with my kids and my family and doing fun things around town in between cycles. We had to cancel our Gatlinburg vacation this summer, but are planning a beach trip to celebrate the end of my chemo in October.
5. What do you wish other people knew about Hope Scarves?
I wish other people knew how much of a difference Hope Scarves makes in cancer patients lives. Without going through it, it is difficult to understand just how hard battling cancer can be and how simply hearing someone else’s story and knowing other people are going through the same thing can completely change your outlook.
6. What would you tell someone who is thinking about sending a Hope Scarf to a friend battling cancer?
I would encourage them to do it. The person they are sending it to may be discouraged and the scarf will definitely lift their spirits and give them strength to keep fighting.
7. What is one of your dreams or goals for the future?
I am a paramedic and had started a paramedic to RN bridge program before I got sick. I plan on finishing the program and becoming an RN. I also plan on finding a way to give back to other cancer patients and encourage them on their journeys.
8. What is your favorite inspirational quote or words to live by?
“Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference” – Winston Churchill
9. If your friends or family had to describe you in two words, what would those be?
Passionate and caring.
10. Please share something you learned having gone through cancer – either as a survivor or as having a loved one with cancer.
I have been on both sides, going through ovarian cancer myself and losing my sister to Ewing sarcoma 5 years ago. The big thing that I learned is to not take life for granted. Everything can change in the blink of an eye, so don’t waste time holding grudges or being angry or worrying about things that don’t really matter.