It sounds so cheesy to say this, but an athleisure brand inspired what became my family’s mantra through 20 hellish months of my mom’s battle with ovarian cancer.
I went to a press breakfast in 2013 with Lorna Jane. At the time, I was unemployed, had no idea what I wanted to do for my next job, didn’t think I’d find a next job. Something about her journey and refusal to accept no for an answer really inspired me, and I adopted Never Give Up as my own mantra. (The story of why LJ adopted it.)
I realized that writing about fitness and health was what lit my fire, and I honed in my job search on looking for companies in that realm. About a month later, I accepted a job offer from Daily Burn, where I’ve now worked for nearly 4 years. I will never be able to say enough about how well they have treated me, especially through this hell. Sending out Ubers from the city to NJ for the services, moving around major meetings. I am a lucky lucky woman to work for such a great company.
Erica Sara, at the time, was creating a mantra line and asked if she could get a quote from me and make me a bracelet. OK FINE GIVE ME PRETTY JEWELRY SURE.
I wore that bracelet every single day until my mom got sick, and then I gave it to her, as a good luck charm, of sorts.
We got our luck, and she went into remission on July 8, 2016. I took back my pretty bracelet.
We returned to a hell we’ll never fully recover from on November 22, 2016, when her doctor told us the cancer had returned. I gave her back the bracelet. “You need it more than me, Mom.”
And for Christmas, I bought my mom a Never Give Up bracelet from Erica. It was also a tradition of my mom’s to order me something from Erica every year, so I did that for her.
My mom left this earth on July 8, 2017, the worst day of my life. Exactly a month ago from today; exactly a year after she’d been declared in remission. As my father and I made the funeral arrangements, in some crazy fog, I found her necklace, still in the little jewelry pouch. I couldn’t imagine wearing this necklace she’d never worn, so I put it in her casket with her, to be with her forever and ever, as she will be with me.
Erica left such a sweet message on my Facebook, remembering their yearly conversation, when I announced my heartbreaking news there. The day I returned to the city from the funeral, all I wanted to do was DO DO DO. I’m a New Yorker; getting things done is what I do. I talked with Lacey about setting up the Uplift class. I emailed the OCRFA to see how I can partner with them. I signed up for the Teal Run.
And I emailed Erica, asking if she had any interest in creating a bracelet or necklace, with proceeds going to ovarian cancer research. I was flooded with emotion when she agreed to do so, and I’m so proud to announce that they are available for order now from her site. There is nothing in the world I can do to bring my mom back (is there? I’d do it), but I can do everything I can to honor her and raise whatever awareness I can so that maybe one day, women won’t have to go through what she did.
You can order the necklace here.
And the bracelet here.
It should go without saying, but I obviously get no cut from this.
I’m glad I still have other people to believe in my crazy ideas, even if it’s not the woman who means more to me than anything in the world.