I have been knowing Abby since I was in middle school. Abby is two years older than me and we both went to the same middle school until Abby and her family moved away. She doesn’t know this and I wanted to save this to tell her through this post, but I looked up to Abby all those years ago. She was a cheerleader, driven and always had a smile on her face. She was a girl my mom always told me to look up to. I remember my mom telling me one time, “If there is anyone you want to look up to that is older than you, Abby is someone I’d hope you look up to.” Safe to say I looked up to her all those years ago and I still do!
It’s funny how people make impressions on us. I lost touch with Abby until recently. When I saw she was publishing a children’s book, I felt so compelled to reach out to her. First, I wanted to congratulate her because this was a goal and dream of mine and this girl who I looked up to many years ago was ACTUALLY DOING IT! How amazing is this?
Abby and I have been in touch the last few months regarding all things publishing. She has answered all of my questions and the role she has played as a mentor from a young teenager to now has come full circle. I was so excited to feature Abby on the blog this month because this month I am celebrating women and her story is absolutely worth sharing.
It’s been a while since I shared a video of my daughter and me announcing the production of our book, “Cancer and the Mighty You.” It’s important to me that you know the journey that lead us to this point, and until now, I wasn’t quite sure how to share that journey. I used to think “there’s a reason for everything”, but living through the last few years, I firmly believe it.
In the wee hours of the morning on May 5, 2018, our car ride to have our first child would turn out to be one of the most pivotal moments of my life. Why? Because hours before she was born, we FINALLY decided to name our daughter: her first name, “Audrey”, after my grandmother. Her middle name, “Ann”, a name from my husband’s family.
In the months that followed, my grandmother would be at my side, like she had been my entire life, to help my husband and me with our new baby. She even babysat Audrey along with my stepmother until she was nine months old.
Maw celebrated my daughter Audrey’s first birthday in May of 2019, her own birthday shortly after in June, and by August, she was diagnosed with glioblastoma multiforme, terminal brain cancer. After having surgery to remove the mass, she never recovered.
The journey that started that August of 2019 and ended in January of 2020 was by far the toughest journey that God has ever lead me on. Though it was my journey, I didn’t do it alone.
There was a team of us who slept on that cot, curled up on that chair, or sometimes just stayed awake as the alarms went off every few minutes to clean her breathing tube or refill her meds. We would leave the nursing home to go straight to work. Sometimes we got a little sleep. Sometimes we didn’t. I guess I did have a little bit of an advantage being a new mom at the time. Sleep? Who needs it?
I knew that I wanted people to know that God had perfectly lined up my life for that year, that month, that day, and even now. My hope is that “Cancer and the Mighty You” finds its place in someone else’s life that same way. I hope it brings them joy, peace, or just a reminder that they’re not alone. Someone out there is fighting, too.
I’m sure after reading this, you may be moved to tears. I know I was. Abby is an incredible role model to all women, especially me. This girl is going places and doing great things. It is a true honor to feature her on the blog.
Cancer and the Mighty is a children’s book about the tiniest supporters of cancer fighters, survivors, and thrivers. The book was written as an opportunity to open dialog with children who have a family member or friend who is diagnosed with cancer.
Want to purchase Cancer and the Mighty You?
Purchase at the Link HERE