This post is sponsored by American Cancer Society; however, all thoughts and opinions are my own.
ALL PHOTOGRAPHY DONE BY Brittany Nikole Photo
“When someone in your family has cancer, we all have cancer”.
“When someone in your family has cancer, we all have cancer”.
Growing up me and my Grandpa loved going to his shed where he kept all his pigeons. He would show me their eggs, their newly hatched babies, and how all of them were so different in their own beautiful way. He has a love for showing his pigeons yet had an even bigger love for his family. My Grandpa was my best friend right along with my Dad. We lost my Grandpa to the 6 LETTER WORD we call CANCER.
When my Grandpa was diagnosed with cancer I remember drawing him pictures and writing him letters. My Dad thought it would be best for me to not see him while he was in the hospital, so I drew him pictures and wrote him letters waiting for time to pass so that he could get better and we could finally bond over pigeons and his rock collections yet little Maddie had no idea that time was actually going to run out and we’d only be left with memories.
I missed him for days, months, years, I’m still missing him. There’s a part of me that left when he left.
“When someone in your family has cancer, we all have cancer”. Middle school where you are still trying to transition from a kid to a teen, where boys are becoming interesting, and where all the drama starts. For me that wasn’t always the case…
HEALTH CLASS… Where my fear of the 6 LETTER word truly kicked in.
abnormal anxiety about one's health, especially with an unwarranted fear that one has a serious disease”.
In health class, we learned about every cancer. We learned about the symptoms, treatments, and worst out comes.. death. This triggered the passing of my Grandpa the way he had died and the way we tragically lost him. It triggered me so bad that I believed when I had a headache it was a tumor that was cancerous, I believed that I had cancer when I felt sick or had a lump somewhere. I began sleeping after school until morning the next day. I was depressed and fell into the dark hole. I truly believed at one point I was dying of cancer. I had a fear that ate me alive every day.
Cancer changed my life at a young age due to losing someone so young to cancer. As I grew up, I grew out of thinking everything was cancer I began to get in a normal routine again and I began playing sports and doing plays.
This fear was always in the back of my mind, yet I was able to talk myself through my fears and I was able to heal. Cancer has always been so close to my heart and my fears are different in many ways yet I can only imagine the fear individuals feel when they here they have that 6 LETTER word. My fears will never compare. This is my story. Many people don’t know this story and how cancer affected my life yet this story has allowed me to open my heart and make a difference where I can in the cancer community.
This year my daughter turned 2 yet her first birthday will always be a birthday that I’ll always remember and cherish. Her first birthday was the first time I was able to give back to someone close to our family in a way that’s beyond close to my heart! Our sweet friend Indy was diagnosed with childhood cancer. Indy and her family have been close friends of our since we joined the Down syndrome community! There support and love has helped our family through this new and beautiful journey that our family began a little over 2 years ago!
We knew wanted to give back someone for Londynn’s first birthday we just didn’t know that someone would be our friend Indy Llew! Indy Llew is such a sweet spirit with the most loving soul and we knew when Indy got sick she was who we wanted to give back to for Londy’s first birthday! Indy’s family has been such an amazing example of kindness, love, and giving back! So no one was more deserving than them.
I mentioned how this family gave back. For their daughter’s 1st birthday they held an event to raise money to get children that are LIVING WITH A LITTLE EXTRA into safe homes where they are loved! Because they did such a selfless and kind thing for there daughter’s first birthday we followed their example and did the same thing for our daughter’s first birthday. I believe if we all found a place where we could make a difference in this world we be a different place. Find your passion for purpose. For me these things that hurt me the most and things that broke my heart. You can have more than one purpose I actually encourage that. TOGETHER we can make a difference and for me, I’ve found this through fundraising and small acts of kindness. I’m here with a purpose - we all are!
Our family has found many ways to support and give back to loved ones who are fighting or have been survivors of cancer! It can be hard knowing you have no control of the situation or outcome of your loved ones who are fighting cancer or simply a stranger. Yet by supporting organizations like the American Cancer Society together, we can turn a passion into a purpose. The American Cancer Society supports fundraising for cancer fighters and survivors! Their Raise Your Way platform walks you step by step through the process of creating your own fundraiser in a matter of minutes. If you can dream it up, it can probably be a fundraiser. So with saying this, we wanted to share 3 fun FUNdraiser ideas that we have done and that has been successful.
3 FUNDRAISER IDEAS
SPECIAL EVENTS - Like I mentioned previously I had Londy’s first birthday be a fundraising event and that was one of my favorites! I want my kids to grow up giving back, being kind, and loving others. I know this will be the best gift in life they can receive. So if you have a birthday or special event coming up I believe this is the perfect way to get everyone together and to help make a difference.
BBQ- Who doesn’t love a good BBQ! Here in Utah it is almost Summer and we love Summer! I think a BBQ is something people can look forward to and if you let them know enough in advance they can be excited for the fundraiser portion to!
Bake Sale- A couple weeks ago a couple cute girls showed up at my front door asking if I liked cookies..My response “Who doesn’t like cookies”?! A bake sale is the perfect way to raise money while also giving people a treat in return! When going door to door don’t be afraid to share your purpose! People are more willing to support a bake sale if you have a passion for purpose! A bake sale is the perfect fundraiser with children!