So back in January of this year, Heather and I decided to give back and create a campaign. We decided to choose 3 special causes that were near and dear to our hearts. One each Tuesday of the month we will donate 10% of the profits directly to a local organization that it would help that specific cause. Parkinson's in April, Breast Cancer in October and Pancreatic in November.
We had chosen Breast Cancer because of my extensive family history with it. I grew up watching my grandmother put an amazing fight against BC. Plus many other family members it has affected. I specifically had choose Sentara Martha Jefferson, because my grandmother and mother both said amazing things about the care she received there during her treatments. So for this month, 10% of profits of each Tuesday will go toward Marianne's Room at Sentara Martha Jefferson Hospital.
To quote Alanis Morisette...it is kind of ironic, don't you think.
That 4 weeks before our first 10% Tuesday for Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I was sitting at Martha Jefferson getting a biopsy on the tumor that was growing in my left breast, just to come back positive for cancer. And crazy ironic that I just had an amazing "Tata Dani's Tatas" gathering the first Tuesday (which we now call Tata Tuesday) of the month of October. I had am still glowing from the amazing love (and boob squeezes) I received from my amazing family and friends who come over and say an official goodbye to my girls before my bilateral mastectomy this Thursday, October 8th. The first week in Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Last Thursday, Heather put two press releases in front of me. One had me in it and the other didn't. I waited, because that was a big deal, letting the whole public know. At that point, I hadn't made it known on social media, but close friends. But this like really meant it was real. And I was actually more afraid of the bad press and comments that it would get - isn't that a crazy thought. I'm here just diagnosed with breast cancer and own a business that is giving profits to a cause and I was afraid about the negative attention it would receive. Which I personally think is just because how bad America right now is thriving off of negativity. WOman up America.
So I chose me in it.
Then went to a friends wedding out of town and forgot about it. Until Monday when Heather told me she sent it and it was out there. So I bit the bullet and facebooked! And WHEW did that feel good. You can read the press release on The Scout Guide of Charlottesville's Blog.
Today as I went in for a post-op procedure, I walked into Marianne's Room. I chatted with one of the lovely ladies who works there. It was an adorable room, where those who have had chemo and have lost their hair, can get wigs, hats, scarfs and other items. As I was telling her, my business was donating to the room and I wanted to see it, she was so ecstatic. And then I told her I was there actually because of my diagnosis and the pending surgery, she 1. hugged me and 2. showed me another room where they supply bras and other items for those who have received mastectomies. And because of The Women's Initiative (who also donates to the Marianne's Room), I received a free specifically designed Camisole. It is specific because it has special pockets to hide and hold my drains that I will have after surgery. As I may not have a need directly for Marianne's Room (pending if I need Chemo), I immediately had a huge overwhelming sense of gratitude for both of these services and donations. My camisole and other's wings, hats, etc. is just one thing that we don't need to worry about, and the fact that I will also be able to donate to them through my business and potentially need those services...whoa. Like (joey) Whoa.
This whole situation, crazy as it is, is also the reason why I chose to be so open about what I am going through. The world around us works in mysterious ways and you have to connect the dots sometimes, and its hard not to when they are right in front of your face.
I'm having a Bilateral Mastectomy to remove and prevent breast cancer on the first week of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. A month that I had already decided, that our business would donate profits to the very location that I am receiving treatment. Again, thanks Grandma Tunnie for making things a little clearer for me. I should help raise awareness to help others catch it too. So here we go.
As, yes if you have the need to shop for cards and gifts at rock paper scissors, please please try and do that on the next 3 Tuesdays of this month. BUT more importantly, the whole reason we chose to be so public about these 3 causes, was to again raise awareness, so if you can't make it by rock paper scissors on the next 3 Tuesdays, please find a way to donate to a special cause to you. Obviously at the moment, I am biased to Breast Cancer Research. But seriously we only 15% of all cancers, we still need all the help we can get. During my doctor visits, my mom has been amazed at how much more we know and how they can find certain receptors and treat differently. Which is a whole different experience when she was on the passenger side during her mother's breast cancer doctor visits.
And secondly, I also want you to take from this....FEEL YOUR TATAS (thats you too men). If you need a reminder...do it on a TATA TUESDAY...either the first of month or pick another one.
In April, we donated 10% of Tuesday Sales to the UVa Neuroscience research department, earmarked for Parkinson's disease. This was in honor of my dad who is currently battling this disease. In November, we will again be donating 10% of retail sales each Tuesday to the Cancer Care center at UVa for Pancreative Cancer research. This is in honor of Heather's late and great father who received amazing care before he lost his battle earlier this year.