Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The Day after Christmas

So it's the day after Christmas and I'm feeling a little let down. I turned on the radio this morning and Rhianna's 'Umbrella' was playing instead of Karen Carpenter's 'I'll be Home for Christmas'.  The tree yesterday that was brimming with metallic wrapped presents and glittery bows hiding treasures untold, now holds boxes of gifts I have yet to find a home for.  The cupboard is bare which means I must now venture out once again to the grocery store to restock our pantry post Christmas feasts.  It's a beautiful sunny yet chilly day here in San Antonio, and yet I know so many are bearing the brunt of an arctic blast that has swept across the nation.  And the latest issue of Time magazine sits on the end table, covered with 27 beautiful innocent faces whose amazingly bright futures were cut tragically short.  Inside, small paragraphs that cannot begin to tell their stories or ease their familys' suffering.  I have struggled with what to write for several weeks now...struggled to put into words something that might be of value to our readers.  And this past Sunday, our pastor, John Hagee, ended a three week sermon series with a message that definitely seems apprapro (is that even spelled right?) today more than ever.  It was a message of hope.  The bible verse that was the foundation for this message?  Psalm 43:5.  "Why are you downcast, O my soul?  Why so disturbed within me?  Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God."  So many of you are fighting the good fight right now.  Some of you may have spent your Christmas in a hospital with a loved one, or been apart from your loved one.  For some of you, it may not have felt like Christmas at all.  "It's the most wonderful time of the year" is so very true, when everything is like it should be.  But so many times it's just not.  Plain and Simple.  And there's no amount of iced sugar cookies, fudge, Christmas lights, or presents that can change it.  So, I feel this message is for you.  Our pastor talked about the difference between hope and optimism, and made an interesting and key distinction. Optism is hoping that things are going to turn out right.  Christian hope is faith looking at the promises of God.  Holding on to God's promises even when other's might see a hopeless situation.  And he said something else that I thought might be valuable to some of you:  when you have no hope; it is as though you are slamming the door in the face of God.  No one escapes suffering.  Jesus didn't.  We have to be able to have hope in the midst of our suffering.  Hope sees the invisible.  Hope feels the intangible.  Hope believes the impossible.  Pray to God:  I don't understand what's going on here, but I'm going to trust that in the end, it's going to be okay.  You're going to make it okay.  There may be weeping in night, but joy comes in the morning.  The sun will rise again.  Put your hand in the hand of God and know that together you are more than you are facing.

Praying that you all had a Merry Christmas!  Hang in there, you are going to be okay!


Friday, November 23, 2012

Giving Thanks

Casey and Kathy getting ready for sweet it is!!

A favorite saying in our family is "Better late than never!", which most certainly applies to today when I say to all of you, "Happy Thanksgiving!".  Had to say that, just so you don't read this with your forehead crinkled thinking we're nuts over here :)  I am attaching a picture of the three of us girls, after we all indulged in just a little too much Thanksgivingness :)  Notice how I (Casey) strategically positioned myself behind my mom...LOL. And as we all recover from too much turkey, stuffing, gravy, yummy oohey goohey sweet potato casserole and cranberry sauce, I can't help but thinking about all of you who may be having a little trouble getting in the 'thankful' mood today.  Those who, like good family friends of ours, may be celebrating Thanksgiving in a hospital room--not sure of what the future holds.  Or maybe those whose sons, daughters, or spouses are deployed.  Those who have recently been given devastating test results, or those who just lost a loved one.  Those who find themselves sitting at a table with an empty chair where a loved one once sat.  We've been there.  Those Thanksgivings are hard.  Very hard.  Hard to slap a smile on your face pretending like nothing's wrong...pretending like you are feeling thankful...when to be quite honest, you're just not.   And that's okay.  In times of trouble, when you don't know what the future holds, just remember who holds the future.  When I was little and my mother was going through all of her treatments, I used to picture in my head the Allstate hands (except in my head they were God's hands), and my family snuggled right in the middle...resting comfortably in the palms of our Savior.  You are safe.  You are loved. 

With that  said, I would like to share with you the Unity daily devotion for yesterday:

"As long as I have breath, I have life.  As long as I have life, I am grateful.  I draw in deep, calming breaths that spread through my body, enlivening my senses.  I breathe in gratitude for all I see, hear, taste, smell and touch.  I am grateful for my loved ones, my home and for the myriad of blessings in my life.   With my next breath, I dive deeper into gratefulness, breathing in gratitude for my oneness in God--whole, beautiful and irrepressible.  With an energizing, amplifying breath, I breathe out any disquiet in my soul.  Poised in an elevated awareness of gratitude, I give thanks for all experiences.

"I give thanks to you, O Lord my God, with my whole heart."
                                                                                        ~Psalm 86:12

Wishing you all a very Happy Thanksgiving,
Casey, Kathy, and Kelly

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Bio-identical hormones and breast cancer survivors

This past Friday night a fellow cancer survivor and close friend of mine, decided to brave the horrific traffic to catch up on some much needed girl talk. Rene, a beautiful brunette, is only 47 years old and has been declared cancer free for several years now. We opted to sit in a quiet and cozy booth at Hoolihans away from all the typical Friday night party-goers, so that our conversation could be heard without shouting across the table. But, when the question flew off her tongue--as though she were asking me what I was doing for Thanksgiving--suddenly it felt like we were the only two people in the room.  "What do you think about the doctor prescribing Bio-identical hormones for me? " The question seemed very natural to her. I had no idea she was even thinking about taking hormones.  And to be honest, the topic of Bio-identical hormones had never taken up much space--if any at all--in my cerebral cortex. I went through menopause at such a young age (38), I don't think I even realized what was going on with my body, until I was pretty much through with that life-changing time in our life.

Still reeling from the original cancer diagnosis, and the surgeries that followed, along with keeping up with my three and seven year old daughters--the fact that one bothersome detail of my life was periods, didn't really phase me. The truth is I happily embraced it.  So, when Rene dropped that question on me, it took me completely off guard. When I got home that evening I decided to check into this for her, our readers, and possibly myself. And just as I expected the verdict still seems to be out--at least that's the impression I received from the surplus of online materials I read.  But I'm attaching an article I found by one doctor--Dr. Pete Hueseman. 

So, with that said--the key word here is ONE.  As I've said countless times on our blog, this is a decision that only you and your doctor can make. But I can tell you one thing... Rene's eyes light up like never before when she describes the positive effects the hormones have made in her life after being on them for only one month. Maybe Suzanne Sommers is really right on target. Anyway,  I'm encouraged to ask my oncologist on my visit next month if he would give me the green light to try them.  I will get back to you with his opinion.  But then again--this will be one more doctor's opinion for just one of his patients.

Also, I'd like to thank all of you who follow us.  For some reason, the numbers don't show up, but as of today, we've had 4,300 visitors to our blog. I'm thankful that so many of you have contacted me personally for prayers and advice. I always welcome any questions or requests and we love to hear from you.  Thank you for hanging in there with us in spite of the 'drought' period when life got a little too crazy to post as often as we should have. May God continue to bless each and every one of you!Re

ad Pete Hueseman's last transcript 
Past History of Breast CancerPatients with past history of breast cancer should not have estradiol or estrone recommended for estrogen supplementation. These estrogens play a role in causing breast cancer by damaging DNA. Estriol is the protective estrogen that is high during pregnancy. It does not activate the estrogen receptor, but occupies the receptor sites so that it is not available for estradiol. Hormone balance is important, and testing of hormone levels is recommended prior to supplementing. For post breast cancer patients, many medical practitioners do not recommend hormone supplementation, except for progesterone, unless hormone levels are well below normal and symptoms are severe. Use of hormones should be carefully tracked by both patient and doctor.
E.mail Pete Hueseman directly. A toll-free number is provided on the resources page.

Read More About Your Hormones

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Breast cancer and menopause

If there are any breast cancer post-menopausal gals out there who have  taken bio-identical hormones  - we'd love to hear from you. We are going to be exploring this topic in the coming week. 

This took my breath away!

Casey, what a beautiful and touching post!  Your words brought tears to my eyes and I'm sure others will be touched as well.  I believe that children of cancer survivors are a different breed...if they're not born that way...they quickly become that way.  They intuitively learn to appreciate and understand how precious life is - even if they're too young to fully comprehend the gravity of the situation unfolding around them... somehow on a deeper level they know. And they too learn how to live by faith. They too become strong...independent and resilient.  I also believe that the Lord helps them navigate these unchartered waters and fills them with the faith, hope and strength needed to meet the challenges that they are facing.  After all, He is our ever-present help in time of trouble.

 God truly blessed me with two beautiful girls - whose outward beauty is only surpassed by the beauty of their hearts.

Love you Sweetie(s), Mom

Thursday, November 15, 2012

The Children of Survivors

My mother and I are occupying the same couch in our family room.  The house is quiet except for the hum of the ceiling fan.  The T.V. is off.  My sister is at a friend's house.  My dad is flying, and my grandparents are just a phone call away.  The sun is streaming through the floor to ceiling windows that are partially covered in drapes on the opposite side of the room.  Normally on a day like today, my mother would have kicked my sister and I out of the house.  Told us to play outside.  Gone with us on a bike ride, or driven us up to the Boerne river to feed the ducks a loaf of bread.  That is, on any other normal sunny Saturday afternoon.  But it isn't any other Saturday.  Not for us.  It is just my mom and I.  She on one end of the couch, and I on the other.  Our legs pass each others in the middle.  I have just had five teeth pulled by our orthodontist who insisted on speeding mother nature up.  I am in third grade.  I wear braces.  The gauze in my mouth still tastes like a mixture of blood and the numbing medication.  I am in pain, but nothing comparible to my mom's.  And so I just lie there watching her.  I try not to let my eyes drift to the tubes that are coming out of her.  Try not to focus on the bags that the tubes lead to.  Try not to focus on the grimmace on her face that paints a picture of the pain, more than words ever could.  She won't talk about it though.  I know that all I have to do is tell her how much my mouth is hurting, and she will be in the kitchen prying off the childproof cap to the bottle of pain medicine Dr. McCourt had prescribed so fast it would make your head spin.  Never mind her own pain.  And so I lie there quietly, and decide to wait until she wakes up from whatever little sleep she has managed to sneek in. 

For some reason, this picture is the one that is seared into my brain.  Twenty six years later this is the image that comes to mind when my mother's cancer is brought up .  When someone mentions the word mastectomy.  Why is this the memory I recall?  When my mother had over a dozen surgeries?  I wonder that myself all the time.  And I am almost embarrassed to give you my hypothesis. My meager attempt at self-analysis. I think it is because it the first time I had to be still.  Had to stop what I was doing.  Had to soak in my surroundings.  It was the quietness, the togetherness, the stillness.  I don't think that prior to this I had ever stopped moving long enough to realize what was going on with my mom.  Realize what she was going through.  My mom kept everything moving, perhaps as much for her own needs, as much as ours.  The distractions are what helped her NOT focus on the cancer 24/7. 

So what got me thinking about all of this now?

Last week, at my dad's annual 'Hallween Bash', a family friend posed a question that I have been pondering now for a couple of weeks.  Something I hadn't really given credence to in well over a decade.  Which is odd, given the nature of this blog, and our family history, or rather more specifically, my mom's history.  Before I even share what this question was, I need to give you a little back story.  You see, every year my dad's Halloween bash pretty much goes as planned.  The same people dress up, and the same people don't, we drink the same 'witches brew', eat the same pizza and lick our chops after we indulge in the same delicous pumpkin pie.  It is all very routine.  By the book.  No surprises (other than the costumes--which DO change every year :)  We enjoy the company of the same friends that have attended our Halloween Party for the past six years that we have been throwing it.  Except for this year.  This year we had a very special visitor.  A little girl I will called "Ann".  She was the guest of one of our close friends.  Their neighbor, to be more specific.  And the reason she was at our house this year?  Because her mom had suddenly passed away last month, her dad works weekends, and our close friends who have the kindest hearts, have graciously offered to watch 'Ann' while her dad works.  Our hearts broke for this sweet little girl.  And while she along with the other children, was upstairs playing, a couple adults got into the inevitable question, "I can't imagine....".  And I honestly couldn't imagine.  So therefore it surprised me when another close friend of ours turned to me and asked, "Casey, how did you feel when you thought you might lose your mom as a child?"

The question caught me offguard.  Not because the question was offensive, or out of place.  But it took me back all the same.   And I have been spending the last couple of weeks trying to figure out why.  And today, watching my three year-old son, completely oblivous to the world around him, playing with his leggos, it suddenly occured to me why the question startled me.  Because as  a child I never even considered the notion that my mom wouldn't be alright.  Never thought for a second that my prayer requests every day of  my entire year in 3rd grade in Mrs. Tabaka's class would go unanswered.  It just wasn't on my radar.  And this is not to say that my faith was that great, or that I was naive (which I clearly was), but I believe most children have the amazing capacity of looking beyond what others might consider overwhelming odds, insurmountable challenges and see the bright side of the situation.  The silver lining.  Call it "naivity", "ignorance", or whatever. But it is a coping mechanism nonetheless.  And while I don't know why sweet Ann, and others like her, have to lose their mom so young, when other children, like the 7 year-old child I was, are incredibly blessed to have their mothers around for years to come, I do think there are a lot of mothers out there battling breast cancer, who have young children, and wonder what their children are thinking.  How they are handling it--how they are coping. And now, as a 34 year-old mother of two young children myself, I can give you somewhat of an answer with the little bit of clarity that 26 years can bring.  Did I have the occasional nightmare?  Absolutely.  In fact, I had my fair share of them. Many nights, unbeknownst to my mom, I would stay up till she went to sleep, just so I could check in on her to make sure she was okay.  Did I have some level of anxiety operating on a conscious level that things might not be okay?  Sure.  But children will amaze you.  And while all children and their feelings are unique, (as a disclaimer I must admit that I have occasionally been told that I have my head in the clouds), I do know that children are astoundinly resilient.  Dreamers.  Survivors.  Just like their moms.

Here's to all of you moms out there who are currently waging the most important battle of your life.  Fight the good fight.  And keep the faith!  We are all rooting for you.

Wishing you all happiness, health and healing,


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Coconut Oil

It was 6:45am this morning, when I realized the topic for my blog. Unintentionally, I have been keeping a little secret for the past several months, but was now ready to spread the word! After showering (still half asleep) and getting dressed for work, I quickly scrambled to the kitchen to make my usual protein shake. (I say scrambled, because of course I was running late.) Mmmmmm…. little fruit, whey protein, and coconut oil, truly makes for the perfect breakfast!  While enjoying my shake, the hint of coconut consumed my taste buds compelling me to share the health benefits of this tasty little treat with all of our followers.

I’m sure the majority of you have heard of coconut oil. But, are you aware of the amazing benefits of incorporating this unique food into your diet? It can aid in weightloss, improve cholesterol, and lower the risk of heart disease and diabetes. It is even great for hair and skin and may even help dementia.

Please feel free to click on the following links for more detailed information:

Time to get back to work before my boss catches me. ;)


Win a Breast Cancer Wig by Follea

Hi Everyone!
My mom recently received an email about a Wig Giveaway contest by Follea.  We know that some of our readers are currently undergoing chemotherapy treatments and may be interested in participating in this contest.  Please read Candice's email below with instructions on how to enter to the contest. 
Praying for health, happiness, and healing to you all,
Casey, Kathy, and Kelly
Dear Kathy,
Since many women struggle with hair loss due to chemotherapy, we believe Follea's Breast Cancer Wig Giveaway on Facebook will be of interest to your readers. Participants who share their inspirational story will have the chance to win a Gripper-2 wig, a beautiful Tres Chic wig or a super-soft bamboo sleep cap. To view the Follea video "A Woman's Spirit is Unbreakable: A Tribute for Breast Cancer Awareness Month", visit

Here are the Follea Breast Cancer Wig Giveaway instructions, which can also be viewed at

1. There are two different ways that a woman with breast cancer can be submitted for a chance to win these prizes:

• A woman with breast cancer can create and submit a short video about her journey with breast cancer, how it has affected her life, and how she is dealing with it.

• A friend or family member of a woman with breast cancer can submit a video about how their loved one who has cancer inspires them.

2. Submit video by Sunday, November 18, 2012 at 11:59 pm PST.

3. All winners, including grand prize, second place and third place winners, will be determined based on the number of votes a contestant receives, in comparison to their competitors. Voting closes Friday, December 14, 2012, at 11:59 pm PST. :

• The grand prize winner will receive her choice of either Follea's Gripper-2 Sport or the Gripper-2 Cool, from Follea's innovative and luxurious 2012 Gripper-2 Collection. The winner will select from one of five standard sizes and available standard color and length specifications.

• five second place winners will receive one of Follea's beautiful, short-style, premium European-hair Tres Chic MM6 wigs.

• 50 third place winners will receive one of Follea's super-soft bamboo sleep caps.

4. Follea will announce the winners on December 17, 2012 at 12:00 pm PST.
Also, every Friday through December 14, Follea will conduct a random drawing of all of the contestants' names, giving all participants the chance to win one of Follea's bamboo sleep caps every week.
About Follea: The company's 2012 collection includes wigs and hairpieces that are specially designed for women with little to no hair such as the Gripper collection, which is light, breathable and stays securely in place with affixed medical grade silicone tabs. Follea has ICARe representatives and ICARe salons around the world, so women can get hands-on help choosing just the right wig or extensions to suit their needs.
Would you like to receive any additional information?
Candice Cousins
Lisa Elia Public Relations
1285 Barry Avenue, #302
Los Angeles, CA 90025
Phone: 310-479-0217
Fax: 888-548-5950

To read Lisa's blog:

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Anti-Rejection Drug May Also Prevent Cancer

The San Antonio Express News yesterday reported that a local immunologist and professor of medicine at The University of Texas Health Science Center here in San Antonio has recently been awarded a two-year, 450,000 dollar grant, from the National Cancer Institute to study the possible connection between a drug and cancer prevention.  The drug in question, Rapamycin, was first approved as an anti-rejection drug for transplant patients.  However, doctors have begun theorizing that the drug's known anti-aging properties could also possibly help boost the immune system's response to attacking and killing cancer cells as soon as they appear. 

To read more about the study click on the link below:

We apologize for the lapse in blog entries and hope that this finds everyone happy and healthy.


Wednesday, October 3, 2012

No Fight Left - JJ Heller

I was actually looking for another video, when I accidentally stumbled across this one.  Did I just say accidentally?  Well, I'm one of those who believes that there's really no such thing as 'accidents' in life.  This is a powerful video and in one way or another we can all relate to it. When we are in a battle for our life and it seems to go on forever, we finally come to a point when we just don't have any 'fight' left in us. I don't care how strong we are or how strong we have been - that time will come.  But my friends maybe that's exactly where we are supposed to be. Whether it's facing another surgery or getting the news that you will have to undergo another surgery.  Or, for you who are victims of abuse of any kind...there just comes that time, that breaking point when you have to let go and give it up...give it to the Lord. You've done all you can do and said all you can say...and it's simply not working.  But He is our burden bearer. He is our friend that sticks closer than a brother. And He is our Healer - physically, emotionally and spiritually. So no matter what battle or fight you're facing...STOP, close your eyes, take 4 deep breaths and relax.  Sit back and watch this video. And listen - wait to hear for God's still small voice.  He is in the middle of that battle you're fighting and the victory will be yours.  So hand it over. You'll be amazed at the enormous gift you'll get in return.

We have a follower who is facing surgery tomorrow morning (Thursday, October 4th ) at 11 am.  Her name is Tina and she needs all of our prayers.  Pray for her believing that the Lord will be in that operating room with her...holding her hand. Pray that the Lord will guide the surgeon's hands and  fill him to overflowing with the wisdom needed to perform the surgery accurately and precisely.  Sometimes in life, no matter how strong we are or how strong we've been - we need the prayers of others to lift us up. This is one of those times for Tina. PLEASE  join together and lift her up in prayer so that she will have the peace that passeth all understanding and that she may once again be made whole and well.

God bless you Tina - our prayers are with you,

Monday, October 1, 2012

Me and You and a Dog Named Boo!

  • Hey everyone, it's October 1st and y'all know what that means.  It's Breast Cancer awareness month.  Our cause is being shouted from the roof tops.  BTW I stumbled across this article and thought you'd find it very informative!  They're making so much progress in methods used to treat and cure this disease.  Who knows, my blog may become as obsolete as the dinosaur in the not to distant future. I may be singing Happy Trails to me before long...and oh, how I will love that song! :))
P.S. For those of you old enough to remember this song by LOBO, I'm posting the words at the bottom of this post...just in case you want to sing along with me! "You gotta get away and get back on the road again".

Pretty in Pink: How Pets Are Helping the Fight Against Breast Cancer

Here in Philadelphia, the University of Pennsylvania's School of Veterinary Medicine runs a Shelter Canine Mammary Tumor Program with the dual mission of providing care to homeless dogs afflicted with the disease and advancing our knowledge of breast cancer biology. It turns out that mammary tumors in dogs and breast cancer in women have many similarities, and the program collects data that could lead to more progressive treatment of both canine and human breast cancers. Because dogs have 8-10 mammary glands capable of producing tumors simultaneously, doctors are able to observe the entire spectrum of cancer development and search for patterns that could provide valuable insight into its progression. Since similar disease processes take place more quickly due to dogs' shorter lifespans, canine breast cancer research produces faster results, which could have promising implications for human cancer research.
When it comes to breast cancer, dogs are slightly better off than their feline friends; 50 percent of canine mammary tumors are malignant, while 90 percent are typically malignant in cats. Like cancer in humans, breast cancer that affects our pets can metastasize to other areas of the body in both species, often spreading rapidly to the lymph nodes and lungs.
Despite ever-improving methods of diagnosis and treatment, cancer still represents one of the most frequent causes of death in both humans and dogs. But a breast cancer diagnosis doesn't have to mean the end for your pet. In fact, you can take steps both to help prevent the disease and to give your pet the very best medical care should she ever need treatment. Follow this simple advice to stay a step ahead of cancer:
For more information on this subject, click on the link below.


I remember to this day, the bright red Georgia clay How it stuck to the tires after the summer rain Will power made that old car go, a woman's mind told me that it's so Oh, how I wish we were back on the road again
Me and you and a dog named Boo Travellin' and livin' off the land Me and you and a dog named Boo How I love bein' a free man
I can still recall the wheat fields of St. Paul And the mornin' we got caught robbin' from an old hen Old Mac Donald made us work, but then he paid us for what it was worth Another tank of gas and back on the road again
Me and you and a dog named Boo Travellin' and livin' off the land Me and you and a dog named Boo How I love bein' a free man
I'll never forget that day we motored stately into big L.A. The lights of the city put settlin' down in my brain Though it's only been a month or so, that old car's buggin' us to go You gotta get away and get back on the road again
Me and you and a dog named Boo Travellin' and livin' off the land Me and you and a dog named Boo How I love bein' a free man ...


Dishonorable Disclosures:Navy Seals speak out

A POWERFUL video you simply can't afford not to watch! A group of Navy SEALS, and other intelligence personnel, including CIA tell it like it is.

Let Freedom Ring

 Here I go again...breaking a semi-promise I made to myself not to go political.  But sorry folks, I just can't sit idly by as the country I love so much goes down in flames.  This country was formed by Christians and its laws and statutes are based on Judea-Christian principles. If anyone doesn't like that...guess what  get over it and then pack your are FREE to leave - no one is holding you here. In fact, we don't want you here if you don't love our country, our values and our flag as much as we do. We have all sat on the sidelines for way too long, and it's time for each of us to do our part - no matter how small - to speak up and stand up for America.  This is NOT nor will it ever be a government formed from Islamic ideals and ideologies and I for one am beyond sickened by the killing of our Ambassador, Chris Stevens and three other heroic Americans. And I'm even more sickened that our administration didn't see to to it to have security beefed up for our Embassies on the anniversary of 9/11. That should have been a no-brainer! The sight of our precious flag that stands for freedom being torn, burned and ripped to shreds while black Islamic flags replace them, Muslims chanting "death to America"and a liberal media who wants to turn a blind eye to all these atrocities is hard to stomach.  BTW - we gave 2 billion dollars to Egypt who is now headed by the Muslim Brotherhood - check them out too. Oh, and then, Mr. President to blame it all on some silly film to cover your failed policies in the middle east...hey - whatever happened to our Constitutional right of freedom of speech???  And just what was that you said about former President Bush's 4 trillion dollar debt he incurred during EIGHT years of his presidency - being 'criminal'?  Well then Mr. Hussein Obama how would you describe the 6 trillion dollar debt you've incurred in only FOUR years? Hmmmmm! This is what is nothing short of criminal Mr. President!

Furthermore, we will NEVER allow Sharia Law to be used in our judicial system and courts of law. And for those who don't know what that means, please, please, please do us all a huge favor and  find out.  In a nut shell, it's barbaric laws and unusually cruel punishment directed specifically towards women and non believers of Allah.  It condones stoning and be headings and murder.

Okay, back on topic :))  My church is praying for 40 days for our country. Churches and Christians all over the country have joined in this journey with us.  I hope if you feel inclined to do so, that you will take part in this effort. This started on Sept. 28th and goes until the election.  Our country is in dire need of God's intervention and grace. Not to mention a change of leadership and direction. If not, we will most likely lose everything we believe in  and everything our forefathers have fought and died for. 

My personal prayer every morning includes the verse from Romans 13:1 "Let the wicked be removed from office...and let your light shine across this country. Let righteousness return to the nation." 

And as I was reading today's prayer and quote, I thought that this prayer could also help our readers who are dealing with fear. So, I hope that you will receive as much help and inspiration from this prayer and quote as I did.  And  if you take issue with me politically, well I'm sorry; but more than that I pray that you will take the time to really understand exactly who we elected to the highest office in the land in 2008 and his true agenda for our country. Again, I can't stress it enough -  don't miss 2016:Obama's America.  Information is knowledge and knowledge is power.

Target: Fear

Psalm 27:1, 3

Founding Father Quote
Under all circumstances, trusting in our Maker and through His wisdom and beneficence to the great body of our people, we will not despair nor despond.”
- Abraham Lincoln
Heavenly Father, we are plagued on every side by troubling circumstances. It seems that our enemies are shooting poisonous darts from every angle, and stealing our peace. Forgive us for allowing the Enemy to create unrest in our homes, in our schools, in our places of business. Forgive us for allowing the government to kick You out of places where we desperately need Your peace to reign. As ungodliness increases in our country, there seems to be little room for hope. As Christians, we know that the Scriptures say You are our Great Hope. Through the blood of the Lamb, we have assurance that You are in control, and that You have not given us a spirit of fear but of sound mind. Therefore, we will not fear but place our trust in You, until the time of Your Son’s returning. For in You we have our being, and through You nothing is impossible. Lord, have mercy upon us and grant us Your peace that surpasses all understanding, that we might be able to stand against the Enemy and boldly proclaim, “I will not fear any evil, for Thou art with me.” In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

A Thousand Tears - Happy Birthday, Mom! I miss you so much!

Well, today is kind of a sad day for me. September 29th was my mom's birthday.  Her memory will always live on in my heart. The day she left this world was without a doubt the hardest day of my life. To say I cried a thousand tears does not even come close to the truth.  But today I choose to remember her life. How can I put into words what she meant to me? I remember her white blond hair that was always so perfectly coiffed, her sparkling green eyes that danced when she laughed and her slender frame. I sit here remembering all the meals she prepared, the dresses she sewed, the cookies she baked for the neighborhood gang, and the care she showed to Sparky our cocker spaniel, and Binky our black and white alley cat that showed up on our door one warm summer evening looking for a meal. I remember the countless hours she'd spend talking to me about my boyfriends or just listening to me when I needed to be heard. My mom had always been my greatest fan and my biggest cheerleader. I knew she loved me, but I never realized the depth of that love until I was diagnosed with breast cancer. The wisdom she passed on to me and my girls is invaluable. Besides being the sweetest person on the face of the earth, she was a strong Christian who lived her faith. When I was first diagnosed with cancer she was my rock. She was the one who talked to every pastor who'd listen, bought every book she could get her hands on about surviving cancer through prayer and diet. She was the one who bought a juicer and juiced day and night to make sure my body could have a fighting chance and she was the one who told me that she wouldn't let me die. And I believed her. Looking back now 26 years later as a parent of grown daughters myself,  I realize how terribly frightened she had to have been at the prospect of losing her only child, but she never let me see the fear in her eyes...not once. When I'd slide down into that proverbial pit--she'd reach down to help me pull myself back up. She'd always say, "This too shall pass."  I believed her and it did.

The last material gift she gave me was a beautiful picture of pink roses with the words from the Serenity Prayer  inscribed on it.  "God grant me the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change...Courage to change the things I can and Wisdom to know the difference".  I hung that picture on a wall in my bedroom. There's not a day that goes by that I don't  recite those words and think of my mother ...her faith...her strength and the unconditional  love and encouragement she gave me.

 Life is all about choices.  When you first opened your eyes this morning, did you give thanks for another day, for the gift of sight and hearing, for the laughter that resonates from down the hall or for the smell of hot coffee brewing in the kitchen just waiting for you to enjoy?  Okay, so right there in that 30 second time span you could have already conjured up anywhere from five to ten things to be thankful for. Never mind that the laughter quickly turned into shouting or you forgot to pick up the creamer for your coffee, or that you didn't get nearly the amount of sleep required to keep you from turning into a cranky grouch. Never mind that you kept waking up because your back hurt or you had some other ache or pain. Or maybe you woke up to an empty house and maybe you've been that way--single--for a month or ten years. Did you give thanks for the peace that can come with that and the relaxation?  You can always find the good in any situation if you just look hard enough.  Or, you can choose to focus on the bad, the negative. If you allow yourself to stay in that dark place long enough, before you know it you will be traveling down that lonely corridor of your mind where your final destination is 'Self-pity-ville'.  Come on now, you know that place...that place we've all visited from time to time...where everything looks dark even on a sunny day.  That place where it's easy to get lost until we can't find our way out...that place where we can easily get stuck...a place where we have all the time in the world to count all the hundreds of reasons we have to cry those thousands of tears.

The Bible talks about that place in many different ways.  But my favorite verse tells us how to not live in that dark negative place.  It is Philipians 4:8 Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.

So my friends, start counting the blessings one by one in your life.  Sometimes the road seems a little too rough to go down, but keep both hands on the wheel and keep looking ahead. Stay focused on all  the positives in your life. Show the world all the thousand reasons you have to smile and remember 'this too shall pass'. 

Thank you mom, and Happy Birthday!

Photo Credit:

Letting It All Hang Out

I came across this quote today and it got me thinking--a scary prospect I know.  Because thinking leads to more thinking--and before you know it I'm writing a disceration on our blog.  But, bear with me a moment, because I do have a point here which I will get to shortly. 

We live in an era where image is everything.  Perfect house, perfect car, perfect kids, perfect husband, perfect hair, perfect nails, perfect teeth, perfect cat--you get the picture.  We feel that we must all the time have it all together--and not only that--but prove to the world that we have it all together too.  Only a few trusted souls within the inner-inner-most circles are even given a glimpse of our less than perfect lives.  For example, the only person I don't stress over coming to my house is my mom.  Anyone else rings my doorbell and I am doing a mad sweep of the house (you know--hastily transfering the clothes from the couch to the bed, throwing the yet to be sorted, chunked and recycled mail into the utility room, making sure the three year-old actually flushed the toilet, and lest we forget that last minute check to make sure a pair of panties or socks haven't wedged themselves in-between the cushions of my couch).  Is it because I care about her less?  Or I don't value her opinion of me as much as I do strangers?  Nope.  It is because I know she will love me no matter what--panties in the cushion and all.  It is why I have her over to my house more often than anyone else.

My point is, I think sometimes--correction, most of the time, we are so busy trying to play this perfect part, that we keep everything bottled inside.  Live in a perpetual state of pent up stress.  It is important sometimes to let let your hair down.  Release those emotions.  Whether you are pounding the walls in frustration, or crying to God in despair.   Cleanse your soul of the incapsulated feelings.  We are a family that believes in letting it all hang out--literally.  The good, the bad and the ugly.  We fight hard, we love hard, and we live hard.  One of my favorite movies is The Divine Secrets of the Ya Ya Sisterhood.  And in one scene, the daughter, Sidda, is on the phone with her mom, Vivi.  It is the opening scene of the movie and Vivi is livid with her daughter over a tell-all article that exposed some of the not so flattering details of her childhood.  Vivi feels betrayed and humiliated and is VERY upset with her daughter and is definitely letting her daughter know it.  Vivi then hanges up on her daughter, and Sidda proceeds to slam the phone down on the counter over and over and over again.  The scene makes me laugh every single time I watch it.  And it reminds me how important it is to let it all out.  If you have been holding something back, don't.  If you need to cry, cry.  If you need to laugh, laugh.  If you need to pound those walls get a punching bag (I have found that a pillow or the couch works fine too), invite the person who loves you know matter what over, and let it all out.  Then take a trip to your local Sonic, roll the windows down, order a chocolate malt (request extra malt of course--after all you deserve it).  And then?  Treat you trusty friend to a malt too of course!  Have a favorite letting it all hang out tip, advice or story?  We'd love to hear it.

Happy Friday everyone!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Over the Moon for the Moonshot Project

Here at Faith, Hope, and Lattes we are over the moon with the recent news surrounding the launch of "The Moon Shot Project" at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston.  The name of the massive estimated 3 billion project aimed at finding the cures for 8 forms of cancer came about after organizers likened their no-holds barred campaign to the Kennedy era space exploration program fifty years ago that was determined to put a man on the moon within a decade.  One of the projects will simultaneously target a more aggresive and deadly form of ovarian and breast cancer (triple negative breast cancer). With genetic information and more precise drugs, "we have many of the tools we need to pick the fight of the 21st century" and find ways to defeat these cancers, Dr. Ronald DePinho said.   For this fight, I'm placing all my chips on MD Anderson!  Cancer doesn't stand a chance!

To read more about The Moonshot Project, click the link below:

The Moon Shot Project

Christian Pastor Released from Iranian Prison

I just read a heartwarming story on Fox News that a Christian pastor who was wrongfully imprisoned in Iran for more than three years has just been released!  This case first came to my attention two years ago when I saw the ACLJ Chief Counsel Jay Sekulow on Fox News trying his best to spread the word about Iranian pastor Youcef Nadarkhani's imprisonment.  His crime?  Youcef was convicted of apostasy (becoming a Christian in a regime governed by Shariah (Islamic) law)  and condemed to death.  However, increasing global attention on his story, due in large part to the ACLJ (The American Center for Law and Justice), mounted international pressure on the Iranian government to free him.  However, we still need to keep Pastor Nadarkhani and his family in our prayers because even though he has been freed, he and his family are still in great danger.  In the past, Christian pastors have been killed once they have been released from prison and Iran has barred him from leaving the country for one month.  The ACLJ, while relieved about the pastor's release, cautions that many Christians still remain wrongfully imprisoned in Iran and other Islamic countries.  So, please keep them in your prayers.


Friday, September 21, 2012

The Power of Believing

I recently saw this video on the power of believing and thought you might enjoy this too. Click on the link below to view this video. I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Co-Q-10 and Chemotherapy

Recently, a follower of this blog shared with me some information that I feel is very important to pass along to all of you.  As I have mentioned before, cancer treatment and research is ever-evolving which is a wonderful thing.  However, that also means that it needs to be a continuing group effort to stay on top of all the advice and latest research that is being thrown around out there in googleland.  A few weeks ago we dedicated a post to CoQ10 and its benefits.  And while I still whole-heartedly believe that this supplement is a wonderful tool in our battle against breast cancer, a lady who has been recently diagnosed, we'll call her 'Heather', mentioned to me in one of our corresponding emails that because CoQ10 is a strong antioxidant, there are reasons to suspect that it might interfere with the effectiveness of chemotherapy and radiation therapy.  She told me that many oncologists now are advising patients to avoid CoQ10 and grapefruit during chemotherapy and radiation therapy.  They also advice against its use for a few weeks pre and post treatment.  Since many of you are in the middle of your treatment, I wanted to make sure to pass this information along. I found a brief mention of this on the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center website, but was unable to find anything indepth. Of course as always do your own research and consult your oncologist, but it might be worth mentioning to your physician.  On the flip side though, some of the latest research also seems to indicate that CoQ10 may also help reduce chemotherapy related heart damage.  Cancer treatment and research is very fluid.  And just as those darn skinny jeans are the hottest thing going this year, but will most surely be 'so out' next year, treatment and research is ever-changing and evolving.  So, please always join in on our discussions to share your knowledge with your fellow survivors.  We are all in the same boat and need some help navigating these unchartered waters!    And a quick thank you to 'Heather' for bringing this to my attention so I could share it with y'all!  Wishing all of you healing and happiness!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

To BRAC or not to BRAC--That is the Question

To BRAC or not to BRAC.  That has been the question on my mind for several weeks now--well, actually ever since the test first surfaced several years ago.  Some people see it as a black or white issue.  "Absolutely BRAC! How can you not?"  Or, "Heck, no!  Why would you want to find out if you are going to have this possible traumatic diagnosis in your future?"  It would be like some black cloud hanging over your head for the next several decades.  I get it.  I get both sides.  It's the proverbial question, "Well wouldn't you want to know if... (and then fill in the blank here on any number of issues that the advancement of genetic and DNA testing now provide a sort of crystal ball for).

Or to quote my (and my mom's for that matter) gynecologist, "Knowledge is power!"  she had exclaimed in an incredulous tone two annual exams ago as she peered up at me from behind those narrow wire-framed glasses that always look as if they're about to slide right off the edge of her nose.  At the time I just smiled back, stood my ground (not really--I was sitting there with my sock covered feet dangling off the edge of the exam table--and wrapped the paper smock (that always makes me still feel half naked) a little tighter around me and responded, "I know.  But I'm not ready to go that route just yet."  Why?  You (and my doctor) most certainly wanted to ask?  Because!  I sound like my three year old right now.  Because of several reasons.  Do I believe that knowledge is power?  Absolutely!  I believe that half of our issues today as a nation exist primarily because the average American citizen (and yes, I am speaking to MY generation--generation X and Y!!) would rather watch Dancing With Stars, The Bachelor, or New Jersey Shore rather than the republican and democrat conventions.  They don't know the name of the prime minister of Israel, and yet they know the name of the guy Emily ended up with on The Bachelor, or that 'Snookie' just had a baby.  With every fiber of my being, I believe we could get our country back on the right track, simply if the majority of Americans KNEW what was going on in our country and abroad!  So, I whole heartily agree that knowledge is power! 

And while I can definitely see both sides of the argument, I tend to exist more in the grey on this issue.  Before I get started, I must give out the legal mumbo jumbo (which is going to feel like a pharmaceutical ad for a brief moment to which I apologize in advance).  This is not intended at all to be medical advice or to persuade your decision in any way.  Of course, always contact your physician, do your own research, and make your own decision based on what is best for you.  This blog is and always will be, based on personal opinions.  And, in the interest of full disclosure, personal opinions do vary even within this blog.  My sister had the BRAC test done at the advice of her physician--without any hesitation I might add.  Model patient as always.  And I envy those who are able to see things with such clarity. 

My decisions are perhaps a little more anxiety driven.  I know that.  And yet, I am the way I am.  What are the benefits to having the BRAC test done?  Where do I even begin?  Knowledge.  Answers.  Beautiful answers.  Perhaps even a chance to change your fate.  To quote the movie Brave which recently came out, "If you had a chance to change your fate, would 'ya?"  And there inlies your answer.  I know for those of you who have received a diagnosis, I'm sure you would give anything to have found out as soon as possible.  Early detection is the key.  And this test, puts a new spin on early detection.  It is the holy grail of early detection. So, I get it.  I definitely get it.  I understand why my sister had it done.  She is usually a lot smarter and wiser than I am, even though I am supposed to be the oldest.

Perhaps for me, it was more a question of "What will I do if the results come back positive?"  Will I have a double mastectomy to ensure that I never develop breast cancer? Will I change my diet drastically to cut out those foods I know are linked to breast cancer (yes, quick confession--I am a mouse, I love all bread, and I occasionally have been known to indulge in a chocolate chip cookie or two, or three).  Being the daughter of an early onset breast cancer survivor has made me more aware.  More conscious of the fact that cancer does not discriminate. I already try to eat healthfully, cut down on my sweets, carbs, cheese, etc.  As much as my low will power will allow.  Or will I have simply opened up for myself a sort of pandora's box full of worry and anxiety for Lord only knows how long? Yep.  That most certainly would be the result. 

For me the answer was more of a teetering on the edge, no.  A 'no, not this year' no.  Will I change my mind in the future about as many times as I do on every other issue in my life?  Probably.  Could I regret this in the future?  Absolutely!  Am I being stupid?  Maybe.  Do I think that the BRAC test is an amazing tool and resource in our fight against breast cancer?  Yes!  But ultimately, like everything, it is a personal decision.  One that should not be taken lightly.  Careful research and discussion with your family and your doctor should go into this. 

So what do you think of the BRAC test?  Have you or someone you know made the decision to have the BRAC test done?  Did you decide not to?  Would you like to share some insight with the rest of us?  We would love to hear your voice on this issue.  To post a comment, please click on the 'no comments', or '1 comment', etc., and you will be able post your comment there. We are working with our blog designer to correct this issue, but in the meantime, this is how we have to go about it.  We look forward to hearing from you!


Wednesday, September 12, 2012


Matthew 6:14 For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you (attitude: forgive because you love the Lord)

I believe that one of the key components in the healing process is forgiveness. Forgiveness is a powerful force and sometimes the person we need to forgive the most is ourselves. And usually that is the most difficult thing to do - forgive ourselves.  We've all said and done stupid things - and made stupid choices.  But the truth is we can't go back and we shouldn't look back.  I know this is one of those 'easier said then done' things, but it's truly a necessary act if we want to be well and healed. The Bible tells us that if we can't forgive others for their transgressions - mistakes - then our Heavenly Father can't forgive us. But you say, hey, there's no way I forgive him or her for the way they hurt me or the hurtful things they said to me.  Well, maybe it is impossible for YOU to forgive that person, so that's when you ask the Lord to help you to forgive. Maybe that person isn't even here on this earth anymore - well you can ask God to forgive that person - or ask that you be forgiven if that is the case.

Forgiveness is a process - a step-by step process.  But it can be done. Sometimes it can happen over night, but usually it's one of those light-bulb moments, when you wake up one day and realize that you're finally free of the hatred, the bitterness or the self-condemnation that you've been holding on to for yours. That freeing feeling will wash over you and giving you a sense of peace.   A huge weight has been lifted off of your heart.  God knows your heart.  People will always disappoint us - that's why we shouldn't put our faith in other people...even those we love the most will hurt us...especially those we love the most. In fact, they are usually the ones who cause us the most pain.  I think that is why the Lord is so very adamant and clear about this commandment. Yes, it's a commandment  - not a request or a simple wish for our lives.  He commands us to forgive, so that we can be forgiven. Forgiveness is a powerful force - and we simply can't afford to live without it!

Read more:

Saturday, September 8, 2012

9/11 Lest we Forget- my personal story

The anniversary of the day that changed America forever is now only a few days away.  I've promised myself that I wouldn't use my personal journey with abuse and breast cancer as a political bandstand, but with this momentous day right around the corner - I have to share my personal thoughts. They are uniquely mine, but ones I feel very compelled to share.  Last night, I went to see 2016:Obama's America - for the second time. It's a documentary that was four years in the making. And you will not find one fact in its content that is untrue. As Americans--regardless of what political party we align ourselves with, or our parents and grandparents aligned themselves with for generations--we owe it to ourselves, our children and our children's children to take two hours out of our life to see this insight into our president, his past and how it's affecting our present and our future.

On 9/11 my day started out as normal.  I had just tossed a load of wet laundry into the dryer when my mother called me at 9am to tell me to turn on the news. The panic in her normally calm and almost sedated  voice told me that I should brace myself for what I was about to see. Frantically retrieving the remote, I stood there transfixed, in disbelief as I watched a replay of a plane crashing into the North Tower of the World Trade Center.  This had to be some kind of tragic mistake--but it wasn't.  Then just minutes later, horrifyingly, I along with  the rest of America watched as yet another plane hit the second tower - the South tower. The details were very sketchy, but by now the FAA was starting to realize that these were commercial airline planes carrying hundreds of innocent people. And when it was reported that the plane to hit the South tower appeared to be United Airlines - my breath literally was caught in my throat. This couldn't be real. This had to be some kind of a sick joke. But it wasn't a sick joke--it was real--terrifyingly real.

A pit formed in my stomach. This was beyond horrific! How could this happen anywhere--especially in America? And what on earth WAS happening? Not only was I witnessing a national disaster, it was a personal one for our family.  My youngest daughter was a freshman in college and my oldest had just graduated from UT and was newly married. I could only wonder what they were hearing about the news and the anxiety and uncertainty that they too had to be experiencing. You see, my husband, and my girls father was and is a Captain for United Airlines.And he too was scheduled to fly out of Newark that fateful morning.  And just like the planes that were inexplicably flying right into the second World Trade Center--he flew the large jumbo 767 and 757's.  The Pentagon was next--and in a scene straight out of a horror movie, I watched as the flames rose from a building that was and still is the symbol of America's security.Then, as if it couldn't get any worse, the news of another United plane crashing in the fields of Shanksville, PA--where passengers had frantically called loved ones to say goodbye and to relate their heroic stories of hopefully taking over and landing the aircraft safely. 

Until you have personally experienced a horrific nightmare like this one--you can't possibly understand the emotions, the fear that grips your heart so tightly that you find it hard to even breath. I tried in vain to reach my husband.  But as we would soon discover, they had grounded all the planes across the entire country. What we didn't know and wouldn't find out until hours later was that they had  taken the pilots and crew to flight ops and they were unable to place any outgoing calls.  It wasn't until 7pm that evening that we were able to reach him and at that moment, relief washed over us like a warm ocean wave.  For ten hours we hadn't known if his plane was one of the planes that were involved in these sinister attacks on our country.  When we slowly started to realize what had actually happened -- it was hard to imagine that such hatred and evil could exist in the world today. But we were the lucky ones. Our loved one was not piloting any of the UAL planes that were hijacked by the eleven Muslim terrorists who hated our country so much that they were willing to take their own lives to destroy over 3,000 thousand innocent American lives. President Bush was so right when he told us that as a country we would quickly forget the terror that these eleven men in the name of Allah and Islam had inflicted on our country on that fall morning in September. I am appalled at how our current president has tried to downplay terrorism to the point that he described the gunning down of 11 American soldiers and 1 civilian in cold blood at Ft. Hood, Texas by Major Nadal Hasan as he shouted "Allah Akbar"--simply as workplace violence. How incredulous! It's been over two years and this cold-blooded terrorist- still hasn't been brought to justice and he's still receiving monthly pay from our government. This should totally outrage every single American!

Of course 9/11 wasn't the only act of terrorism against our country, but it was the largest and the only one to happen on our soil.  How can any of us forget the bombing of our marine barracks in Beirut, Lebanon and the bombing of the USS Cole carried out by this same anti-American, anti-Christian and anti-Zionist terrorists?

As Americans we need to wake up and remember the atrocities committed by these people who have since 9/11 quietly and steadily been invading our country. We need to stop pandering to these terrorists and halt the 'fear of racial profiling dance' we've been participating in now since 9/11.  We need to protect our borders and stop the flow of terrorists that are slipping into this country because our administration wants to be accepting of all illegals for political gain regardless of the price this country will pay with it's very soul.

So, on 9/11 if God puts it in your heart to do something to show your support for this country and to help honor those fallen--both on 9/11 and our heroes in the military who have put their lives on the line every day for you--those men and women who fight for an America they believe in--then go see 2016:Obama's America  and rent United 93.  And then, at the end of the day--pray.  Pray for all the families that lost loved ones on 9/11...fathers, mothers, daughters, sisters, brothers, aunts, uncles and friends.  Pray for our men and women in uniform who believe in this country and their families. And pray for America. Pray that she finds her way back to the values and Christian principles that have served to make her the greatest country on the face of the earth.  We, as Americans, accept everyone with open arms. All that we ask is that you not come to our country with the intention of destroying it and stripping it of everything good that it stands for. And pray for wisdom--that when you walk into that polling booth in November that you will be voting for the heart and soul of America  and for her very survival--not for some generational political party persuasion. 


Friday, September 7, 2012

The world needs your flame...

On BeliefNet today there was a beautiful video I would like to share with everyone.  So, when you get a chance today, when the house is quiet and you have a few precious minutes of 'me' time (and we're only talking about five minutes here ladies), kick off those shoes, settle into your favorite chair, and watch this video.  I promise it is worth it.

Click on this link:

Happy Friday Everyone!

Blessings to you all,

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Let your voice be heard!

Please, please, please share your story, comment and let others know they're not alone.  We know we have a huge audience from all over the world, but our readers need to know that they are not the only ones who find themselves in this struggle.  We are a sisterhood of mom's, daughters, girlfriends, cousins, neighbors and friends and we all have a voice.  By sharing your journey, you are helping others to know that there is someone out there who understands what they are going through. If you're having trouble commenting, please give us a shout out!  We are not the world's most brilliant or experienced bloggers, but we really want to hear from you.  Everyone has something to offer.  So let your voice be heard.  Together we can make a difference in each other's lives.