Thank you all SO much for the kind comments on our house (and kitchen)! Bobby and I have enjoyed reading every single one of them and your support, as always, means the world to both of us.
Speaking of support, I am excited to share a guest post today from a truly inspiring and wonderful friend. I’ll let Susan do most of the talking, but I encourage you to visit her auction between now and Friday, November 16 at 11:00 pm EST to support a great cause. Take it away, Susan!
Hello! This is such an honour to be featured on Eating Bender! I have been reading Jenn’s blog since her beginning days. It is pretty wonderful to see how we’ve grown together.
Anyways, my name is Susie. Some people may know me from my old blog, The Great Balancing Act. I was a food and fitness blogger until I was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma in June 2011 at the young age of 25. I was admitted to hospital with a grapefruit-sized mass in my chest and the world as I knew it changed forever.
Lymphoma, for those of you who don’t know (I didn’t until I got it!) is a blood cancer of the immune system. It’s an unstoppable growth in the lymphatic system and creates masses in the lymph nodes. That’s put very simply, anyways. It is very closely related to Leukemia and Myeloma cancers.
I underwent six months of chemotherapy, narrowly missed having to get radiation, and came out the other side in January 2012 as cancer-free. Right after my 26th birthday!
Recovering from chemo was WAY harder than I ever expected it to be. I was a personal fitness trainer before my diagnosis, but suffered from lung, muscle, and bone damage throughout treatment. Adjusting to the “real world” after such a traumatic and isolating experience is difficult, to say the least.
Hodgkin’s is one of the best cancer diagnoses a person can get in terms of survival rates. I have had both the fortunate and unfortunate opportunity of knowing and loving people affected by blood cancer whose prognosis was not as favourable as mine. Science just hadn’t caught up with their disease yet.
So after getting the third “all clear” from my oncologist in October, I signed up to run a half marathon in Edinburgh, Scotland with the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Team in Training. It is a CRAZY undertaking for so soon out of treatment. But it has injected an energy and passion into my life I have not experienced since prior to my diagnosis.
Most importantly, these efforts are going towards those who did not luck out in the Russian roulette that is cancer. The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society funds blood cancer research, leading to treatments that are not as harsh and dangerous, as well as improved detection for earlier diagnosis. Anyone who has been touched by cancer knows the importance of better treatment and detection. As advanced as we are as a society, cancer is still something that continues to stump us.
With all of this, I inform you that I am currently hosting an online fundraiser to help these efforts! I committed to raising $6000 for LLS and I need your help! Feel free to visit my website, peruse the items up for bid, and pledge your support. The auction closes Friday, November 16 at 11pm ET so get your bids in! All items should arrive in time for Christmas. For more auction details, go here.
Thank you to Jenn for providing the space and soap box for my story, as well as donating to the cause!
I encourage all of you to go and check out the amazing array of goodies in the auction. And if you’re interested, bid on my item: your choice of any Curly Girl Design art board!