Allyson – Erie, CO
How did you become connected with Hope Scarves?
While going through chemo in 2013, I received a surprise Hope Scarves package. It was requested by my co-workers and I was honored that they had chosen to donate on my behalf as well! Later, I found out that my boss was friends with Lara!
If you received a scarf and story please share how this impacted your healing journey.
Receiving the scarf was a great surprise during a rough time. It was so inspiring to read the stories that went with the scarf and feel connected to someone else through it. Plus, it was fun to try a new and pretty scarf that was a little more strong and bold than anything I would have picked up to that point!
What are the things that provide hope and strength to you throughout your battle?
Faith and friends and family. Somehow, my husband never seemed to get sick of me ☺ and was an incredible support. And God put so many caring and generous people in my path that made meals, went for walks, sat through hours of chemo and supported us in so many ways.
Where are you currently on your cancer journey? Tell us how you are living life over cancer.
In the spring of 2013, at the age of 27, I had surgery to remove tumors from both ovaries; I completed my last rounds of chemo in the end of 2013. Since then we have no signs of return and hope that’s the case forever!
One of the hardest parts about discovering ovarian tumors and going through surgeries and chemo was delaying our plans to start a family. After chemo we weren’t totally sure when it would happen, but these days I’m so incredibly blessed to be chasing around our 8 month old son!
What do you wish other people knew about Hope Scarves?
Hope Scarves are more than just scarves; they’re a connection with others. There was something special about wearing an item that someone else had worn through their journey; like you are adding their strength to your own when you put it on!
What would you tell someone who is thinking about sending a Hope Scarf to a friend facing cancer?
Definitely do it! Sometimes you feel unsure what to say or how to help someone who’s going through a tough situation. Sending someone going through chemo a Hope Scarves package is a great surprise to lift someone’s spirits and show them that you are thinking about them.
What is one of your dreams or goals for the future?
Somehow this is the hardest question! I feel like I waited a long time for our son and my goal right now is to enjoy our family as much as possible!
What is your favorite inspirational quote or words to live by?
During chemo, one of my favorite songs was “Already There” by Casting Crowns. The lyrics seemed to sum up how I was feeling lost and out of control and then give me hope that there was a plan somewhere beyond my sight.
“From where I’m standing, Lord it’s so hard for me to see where this is going and where You’re leading me. I wish I knew how all my fears and all my questions are gonna play out in a world I can’t control.
From where You’re standing Lord, You see a grand design that You imagined when You breathed me into life and all the chaos comes together in Your hands like a masterpiece of Your picture perfect plan.”
If your friends or family had to describe you in two words, what would those be?
My husband says – determined and faithful. ☺
Please share something you learned facing cancer.
I was very concerned about losing my hair because I didn’t want coworkers or strangers or anyone to know what I was going through. But, it turned out that few people asked questions or treated me any differently. And those that did were supportive and kind and usually had a similar story or experience to relate to. Being bald made me feel like I stood out, but it also led to connections that I never would have had.
I also learned that it’s okay to share the struggle. Hearing stories of those battling cancer can be so inspiring, but it can also make you feel like you’re weak and lesser on those inevitable days where you don’t feel like a survivor and you feel like a Netflix addict. Those are the days to say yes to friends dropping by and to eat a whole pint of ice cream and be proud that you are, in fact, a survivor because you just survived one more whole day and tomorrow you can inspire someone else.