Here’s One I Never Thought I’d Write

Guys, I don’t even know what to say. Especially after it’s been a couple few months since my last post. But I am diving back in to give you an update that, if you’ve been with us since the beginning of our blog, you’re surely going to want to read.

Many of you will remember, I’m sure, that 8 years ago this month my good friend Elizabeth, aka “E” was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. She fought it, and you, our very wonderful readers, raised a butt ton of money for her to help her family while she did so. And then after months of grueling chemo and hair loss and grief and joy and learning, E was cancer free.

And then after more than six years cancer free (which is usually considered cured), she wasn’t anymore. She told me at church one day about a year and a half ago. She wanted to keep it on the down low. It was just a tiny spot, a small surgery and low key chemo was gonna take care of it.

And for awhile, it did.

And then it didn’t. In October she went for a scan that resulted in immediate emergency surgery on her stomach to remove a large mass. It wasn’t good, she ended up with a ostomy bag. Since then, she has fought valiantly, but has only even had the strength and health for one or two chemo treatments.

In December she had the strength to write a couple of posts on her Caring Bridge site. I was hopeful, she sounded like HER. And she even asked me to bring her some magic Monat dry shampoo since she couldn’t wash her hair as much as she wants to. That brought me some joy. I was super super hopeful.

But a few days ago her husband Steve wrote an update that HE never thought he’d write, just like i can’t believe I’m writing this one. He was writing to tell us that barring a miracle, his bride will be with Jesus soon. I think part of me already knew, but it still felt like someone kicked me in the stomach. Which is nothing compared to how Steve and his kids Olivia, Quinn, and Turner feel.

I hope you will all hop over to the CaringBridge and read what E and Steve have written. E wrote at Christmas time that she was not afraid to die. ( I really want you to read that one guys. Dec 23rd. Will you read it for me please?) That, my friends, is a gift: because I can tell you when I walked this road with her 8 years ago she was very, very afraid to die. So God has worked a miracle in her heart and I am so thankful. She’s so strong an amazing, and has loved others SO well her whole life long. I want her here longer selfishly, but I am so glad she is not afraid to approach her eternal home with peace.

Friends, I ask for your prayers for the Koproskis. Pray for a miracle of healing, or pray for strength and peace for Steve and the kids. You know ovarian cancer has hurt my family and I hate to see it hurt another that is so dear to me. All of this is such a reminder to me that this world is not our home, that man and woman were created to live in a world where cancer didn’t exist. Sin changed all that, but we still have the opportunity to be in our forever home after we leave this earth, thank God. No more tears, no more cancer, no more young kids missing their mom.

Today I am thankful that E is my friend, that I got to watch her and learn for her in all that she did for others in both sickness and health, that she is teaching me still. But I am also super sad. Please pray for the Koproskis…God draws near to the brokenhearted.

I am full of emotions but also so overwhelmed that I almost feel like I wrote this clinically. So I apologize for that. I’m just really, really sad and I never wanted to write this stupid update. It sucks. Thank you, friends. For caring then, and for caring now.

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I Wish I Could Just Float Through Life Like Emily Does

I am epically sorry that I haven’t written here in awhile, you guys. I thought I’d have more time and energy to blog after I went part time with my job writing for ForEveryMom, but the truth is…I write eight article a week there and THAT…is A LOT. Creative juices are hard to come by after eight 700-1,000 word articles a WEEK. I mean maybe I could have done it in my prime (whenever that was), but now I’m OLD. Like I’ve got five days left of being 40. And yessssterday that indignity was solidified by a trip to the BMV, where:

  • I was told my Social security card (which we’re not allowed to laminate, BTW) was to ripped up to get the fancy new TSA compliant license
  • I almost failed my vision test in my left eye because I wore my contacts instead of my glasses because you’re no longer allowed to wear glasses (or SMILE, GAH) in your driver’s license photo and my left eye doth protest a lot about contacts these days,
  • I answered multiple questions about how many times I’d been married (UNO thanks) and had to pony up proof of that just ’cause I had the gall to change my name 18.5 years ago, AND
  • I paid $25 for the “regular” license that won’t get me on a plane so I could stay street legal while I’m getting a new social security card

UGH. ANYWAY.

I am fairly certain NONE of this would have happened to me if I were one Emily Berry. In case you’ve forgotten, she’s this one:

The one without the beard

And this is basically her EVERY DAY.  I mean firstofall, she’s only 39 and secondably (I love inventing words! It’s my fave), she’s still got perfect vision. I’ve been blind since I was EIGHT.  Coke bottle glasses or contacts for THIRTY-THREE YEARS and all this one has to do is OPEN HER EYES to see in the morning. UGH. So irritating.

I’m fairly sure when she goes to the BMV they let her bring a giant ring light like Khloe Kardashian and take 12-15 photos and let her CHOOSE which one she wants.

Case en pointe, last Sunday we held a spectacular event at a salon for our Monat customers. And by “we” I mean my team, of which Emily is a part. Earlier in the week she stayed up 36 entire ours moving every last freshman into the dorms at Miami University ALL BY HERSELF so she was all, “Look I’ll show up to the event and help you pay for it, but I CANNOT help plan it.” And I was all, “Fine, but could you at LEAST bring your fancy hair dryer (which I ordered you from Costco because that’s what you do when you love someone) so we can use it on a customer?” And she was all, “YEP.”

Well let’s just say the event started at five and it was CRAZYPANTS, which was awesome, but that I got a text from Emily at 6:30 saying she’d taken a long nap and just woke up and oopsie she was sorry she missed it.

And you know what? DO you KNOW how easy this woman’s life is? Here’s how easy: Not only was I not mad, until I got the text, I hadn’t even noticed she and her hair dryer weren’t there!!

Now, you might be insulted if you were Em, but the truth is I was so busy I didn’t have time (FOR ONCE) to think about Emily.  And I was not even mad because look at her, I can’t be mad at her!! And she got a FOUR  HOUR NAP!

I mean, she DID stay up 36 hours that week personally making the bed of every last freshman at Miami (#loveandhonor) but COME ON.

I guess the main point I’m trying to make here is: Where have I gone wrong with my life?? I’ve GOT to start riding this girl’s coat tails. Or at LEAST just start copying literally everything that she does.

Because it’s clearly working. I mean I’m writing this entire jealous rant about her and I still just really wish I was with her right now. *Sigh*

How does she DO IT??

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That Time I Quit My Job

If you’ve been around this blog for awhile, you might remember that, during my many years of stay-at-home mom-hood, I would often tell Emily that “work is for suckers.

Then a few years ago, I did not heed my best advice, and I went and got a job. Only part-time though! And actually, it was perfect for me. So all was well and good and this particular work was NOT for suckers.

And THEN…I liked the job so much that I thought after Jonah went to kindergarten, I would like to go full time. Be a REAL employee, get benefits, etc. I really wanted to further my career and I thought this was the way to do it.

Long story short, after about seven months of full time work, Mark Zuckerburg of Facebook fame decided in August 2017 that he was going to drastically reduce the reach that Facebook business pages got -especially if they linked out to articles that took people OFF of Facebook.

Which is exactly what I did all day – write articles for the website I was editor for, then post them on Facebook so people would click off to Facebook and go to said website.

So, after August 2017, my job got a whole lot harder. I powered through it for about 10 more months, but the added stress was no bueno. To write article after article and have NO ONE read it…pretty disheartening. Maybe once a quarter I’d find a glitch in the matrix and I’d have one go viral, but it was seriously just luck. When you publish 4 articles a day, 5 days a week, and have one or two out of over 200 really do well…it’s demoralizing. ESPECIALLY when you used to have success on a much more regular basis than that and everyone thought you were great at your job. WOMP WOMP.

In April Bobby’s Lexus dealership got  bought out. This, while not all bad, has added a lot of stress to his work load (he is shop foreman now). So, this whole spring we were both VERY stressed. With two VERY STRESSED parents, our household wasn’t functioning well. Something had to GIVE.

So, I asked my work if I could go back to part-time. Back to being a contractor. Have a little less stress and more flexible time. And they said YES!!! I am soo soo blessed by that. To accomplish this, I had to formally resign my full time job, and sign a contract to be an independent contractor. Now I am ONLY writing, not managing the Facebook page or the website traffic, and after two weeks of having that off my plate, I can say I made the right choice. I’m so happy to still be writing, which I love to do, and on parenting subjects I am passionate about. I am also happy to be working less hours, so I actually have less child care and MORE TIME to spend with my kids this summer, and to start managing our household better.

I’m also hashtag blessed to have more time to put into the MONAT hair care business Emily and I are doing together! If you are curious as to what that is all about, you can request to join our Facebook group. I’m also doing beauty product reviews (earlier this week I announced a NEW FAVORITE MASCARA!) there, too!

Finally, I’m so excited to be able to blog HERE more. I have missed writing just for me, and to crack Emily up, a LOT. But working full time left me zero creativity to spare. I can’t wait to spin you some more yarns about what my family is up to these days.

So, yeah, I no longer think work is for suckers,  but I do think I’ve found  my happy place with work and I’m thankful!

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