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five years ago today.

These days, it is the chaos and stress of starting a business that make me feel overwhelmed. But then I take a deep breath and remember where I was five years ago.

Friday, March 6, 2009. It was early rush hour and I was on my way to the ER at St. Joe. After six months of not feeling well, my swelling neck & face convinced me it was time for answers. An hour or so later, what seemed like every nurse and doctor in the ER crowded around the foot of my bed.

“Your chest x-ray is showing a large mass.”

Just like that.

A grapefruit-sized tumor, nearly encasing my heart. Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma. I was 31.

It was the “good kind of cancer”, meaning treatable. Mostly due to a fairly new (1997) drug called Rituxan, which effectively doubled the survivability rate.

One drug. Doubled the survivability.   

I am living, breathing, SHOUTING proof that research funded by The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society  changes the lives of cancer patients. And the lives of those who, out of the blue, become cancer patients tomorrow.

This is why I am thrilled to be participating in this year’s Man & Woman of the Year campaign. From March 20-May 29, I will be competing to raise funds for cancer research through LLS. What does that mean?  

It means:

-during the 10 weeks, a portion of all sales at Milagro will benefit LLS -we’ll be hosting some fantastic events in the new spa, where you can enter to win FREE SPA SERVICES FOR A YEAR! (yep.) -we’ll be selling some special #BeTheMilagro merchandise with all proceeds going to LLS

If this cause is as personal for you as it is for me, I want to hear from you. I plan to fill our blog for 10 weeks with inspiring stories about how cancer changes lives.

If you have or know of a company that would like to sponsor Team Milagro…hey, call me? (913-338-0620) 

If you have a particular skill or experience that could help our campaign, can we talk? (email –

Once March 20 arrives, you’ll be able to follow our team’s progress on our fundraising site here. And we’re going all out here, friends. Want to break some fundraising records with us?


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