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Celebrating 6,000 Facebook Fans with limited edition Digital Sessions!!!

For the past few years, I have been focusing on senior portraits, only taking the occasional family session or engagement shoot for my friends and family. That’s why this fan appreciation sale is so special. It is for FAMLIES CHILDREN BEST FRIENDS ENGAGEMENT SESSIONS MATERNITY ANNIVERSARY JUST BECAUSE… So even if you are not a senior – this is your chance to have a session with HNP! I really appreciate your continued support these past four years! USE THE CONTACT BUTTON ABOVE TO CLAIM YOUR SESSION! Instructions in image below…

FINE PRINT
*This special does not apply to senior portraits. It cannot be used towards weddings or newborns. Families of more than 5 people may be considered for an additional fee. If you have an off the wall request, feel free to run it by me first.
*Payment due in full in order to book this special. The price includes the photo shoot PLUS 30 fully edited digital files so that you can create your own prints! Three weeks after your session, you will be given a link to an online gallery where you can download your images and share them online.
*I am not available weekends or holidays. Your session will be up to two hours long, with unlimited outfit changes during this time. Session will take place in Escanaba, MI.

June 2013 6000 Fan Appreciation Sale













To the Lake and Back

The last time I ran outside was three days before I found out that I had cancer. In the months leading up to my diagnosis, I had established a routine of a morning run to the lake and back, a healthy smoothie, and a productive day to follow. I finally felt like I was on track to get to the happiest ME. Summer was just around the corner; I felt invincible. So, the timing of my diagnosis was a punch in the face. The months that followed left me weaker than I had ever been; utterly broken.

Today, I ran outside. Three miles without missing a beat. To the lake and back. When I realized when I had last run to the lake, I couldn’t hold back the tears. Nine months have passed already, and I couldn’t be more different from that girl last May. Who did she think she was? What could she possibly have known about happiness? About grief? Life?

On the day I was disconnected from my very last chemo pump, I met Bron for our first personal training session. Instantly, I loved her positive words and goofy personality. I was exhausted, drained of all my physical strength and almost all of my hope. At first, I couldn’t even run for thirty seconds. After weeks in bed, I had lost so much muscle tone. Plus, the neuropathy in my feet was a difficult adjustment. We started with some easy circuit training and I began walking on the treadmill. After a few weeks and a new pair of running shoes, I gathered the courage to try running again. Once I got used to the sensation of numbness, I started running a little faster, a little further. Strength training was paying off – I felt stronger and more energetic. Still, it is hard to see progress when you’re in the middle of it, especially when you’re impatient like me. I wanted to be ready for a marathon, with big guns and buns of steel. I was at a plateau and I was frustrated.

Last week I had the surgery to remove my port, and I was on doctor’s orders not to lift or exercise for a week. The weather was so perfect; it was killing me to not go out for the first run of the year. Today, finally! As I hit the two mile mark, I was approaching a hill (no cheesy metaphors about uphill battles here). My pace slowed and I got that nagging urge to walk. Then my song came on, “Dog Days Are Over” by Florence + The Machine. It gets me motivated every time, I could run miles with it on repeat. And then it hit me:

Look what you’ve done. Look what you’re capable of. Every single time you try, you progress. You’re on a path to a better life and the only direction you’ll go is UP as long as you make the effort to try. It’s life changing when you see that there are no limits but the ones you place on yourself.

Happiness hit her like a train on a track
Coming towards her stuck still no turning back
She hid around corners and she hid under beds
She killed it with kisses and from it she fled
With every bubble she sank with her drink
And washed it away down the kitchen sink

The dog days are over
The dog days are done
The horses are coming
So you better run

Run fast for your mother, run fast for your father
Run for your children, for your sisters and brothers
Leave all your love and your longing behind
You can’t carry it with you if you want to survive

The dog days are over
The dog days are done
Can you hear the horses?
‘Cause here they come

And I never wanted anything from you
Except everything you had and what was left after that too, oh
Happiness hit her like a bullet in the back
Struck from a great height by someone who should know better than that

The dog days are over
The dog days are done
Can you hear the horses?
‘Cause here they come

Run fast for your mother, run fast for your father
Run for your children, for your sisters and brothers
Leave all your love and your longing behind
You can’t carry it with you if you want to survive

The dog days are over
The dog days are done
Can you hear the horses?
‘Cause here they come

The dog days are over
The dog days are done
The horses are coming
So you better run

-Florence + The Machine-

  • Susan - Truly inspiring!

A New Perspective on Birthdays { Escanaba, MI Senior Photographer }

I turned 26 this weekend! I couldn’t be more excited to close the door on 25 and put this year behind me. This got me thinking…as we get older, why do we dread birthdays so much? Isn’t getting old a privilege? When you consider the alternative – dying young – getting old doesn’t seem like anything we should be complaining about. After all, life only moves in one direction; there’s no stopping it. So why not embrace each year, and celebrate having made it this far. On your next birthday, I don’t care if you’re 15 or 95 – let your loved ones spoil you, and be thankful that you are here to enjoy it.

In other news, there has been a LOT going on at HNP! I’ve jumped into 2012 with some pretty ginormous goals, and I’m already seeing them unfold in front of my eyes. If I could keep my business thriving through a cancer diagnosis and chemotherapy…I don’t see how anything can stand in my way this year!

1. My business has expanded beyond what I had ever imagined – and so, it’s time to hire my first employee! I’m beginning the search for the perfect person to turn HNP into a team of 2! (I tried convincing my mom to quit the ice cream business and be my right hand woman year round…but apparently she really likes being the icecream lady!!) If you are interested in the position, you can send your resume, references, and cover letter to me at hollyhollydesign@gmail.com. Check out the Facebook page to learn more about what I’m looking for.

2. The first big promotion of the year is coming up this Saturday! I’ve teamed up with Beautiful Beginnings, Tan’ology, and Ashley Gardner to put on a Prom event like no other! High school girls from all across the U.P. are invited to the bridal salon on January 28th from 10-3 to try on the latest Prom styles, give modeling a shot by having their photo taken in their favorite dress, check out some amazing makeup and hair demos, and cash in on some incredible giveaways! The HNP Class of ’11 models will be helping out, and Liz, last year’s HNP Prom Queen Winner will be our live window model! It’s going to be so much fun!

3. I’m trying to narrow my business focus onto what I REALLY want to do. As a photographer, it’s easy to accept every project that comes your way, but with experience we discover what we like and what we could do without. As most of you know, I stopped shooting weddings last year. I was lucky enough to only work with very kind couples (no bridezillas at all..thank goodness) but I still found that the anxiety that comes with such a big event took the fun out of it for me. It takes a very special person to be a successful wedding photographer – and a good photographer is worth the investment! I have several super talented friends that I am happy to recommend if you’re looking! I’ve photographed a little bit of everything – engagements, families, children, seniors, newborns, pets, you name it. This should come as no surprise, but I have found that photographing high school seniors is my absolute favorite thing to do. Soooo, to make a long story short – I will only be taking on seniors this year! Whew…it feels good to put that out there. Again, I’m happy to make recommendations if you are looking for another type of photography. If you are going to be a senior and you’re looking for unique senior portraits that will make all of your friends jealous – I’m your girl!!:)

4. Another aspect of the business that really interests me is creating connections and networking with other like minded professionals. Together with Jen of Wren Photography, Jenn of Jennifer LaChance Photography, and Daniele of Daniele Carol Photography – we will be starting a local chapter of Lemonade & Lenses – the brainchild of the lovely Lexi Vornberg! Our organization is about learning and sharing with other photographers; creating friendships rather than rivalries. I met with a wonderful group of photogs last week, and we’ll be holding the first official U.P. L&L meeting in March. Here’s us doing our sexy pose!!!

I’ve also launched a brand new modeling program for the class of ’13 seniors, I’m working on a new blogsite, and I’m preparing to introduce another division of my business within the next year. So much to do – so little time!

And those are only my 2012 goals. Just wait until you hear my 2013 goals!:)Keep up with the action by becoming a fan of the HNP facebook page!

Here’s to growing old!:)

P.S. On my birthday, I had the opportunity to photograph two of my best friends – my first shoot since October! Here’s a sneak peek:

  • Aly - Amy (Dye) Driesel – Oh Holly, as they say in the south, bless your heart! That is so young to have to deal with such a horrible thing. I’m glad you are ilnefeg better and I will keep you in my prayers. You sound positive and staying positive is half the battle. I’m sure everyone gives you cancer stories, so here is one from me I work with a woman who had colon cancer at the age of 34, also very young. She caught it early and didn’t have to have chemo. But she is cancer free today and will turn 40 in a couple of weeks. So hang in there and throw yourself into planning your wedding!! That will keep you busy. Take care and good luck

On the mend…

Well…I did it. Twelve brutal chemotherapy treatments, done! I wanted to write this blog post to celebrate getting to this point, to thank those who have carried me through this nightmare, and most importantly to help others learn more about what a cancer diagnosis really means…not the movie version of cancer. I’ve been sitting on this post for awhile because I wasn’t sure about sharing such a personal experience – but I think it’s important. It’s going to be long, so get comfy. I think by this point, I’ve experienced every stage of the grieving process, though I think I went through it backwards, forwards, and over again. As for now, I’m a little overwhelmed, a little bummed out most days, and definitely anxious about what the future holds for me. I know it will get better, so I’ll allow myself a small pity party and get on with it, while realizing that I’ll never be the same.

I want to try to paint a realistic picture of what it was like. Not just for you, but for me too. I always want to remember this. Before I was diagnosed, I sometimes thought, “What would I do if I had cancer?” I thought everyone had this morbid thought. June 2nd was the day we got the diagnosis that shocked the pants off all of us. I got the news alone in my living room; a call from Dr. Surrell. I let myself cry for awhile, and when I thought I could keep it together I called Dano at work. The words wouldn’t come out, and he rushed home and we cried together. We packed our things and headed for Marquette. In the waiting room at the surgeon’s office, I told my parents what the doctors already knew, it was definitely cancer. I remember wanting to be strong for my parents’ sake – but with surgery scheduled for the next day I was honestly just looking forward to the drugs that would take me to a place where this new reality hadn’t yet sunk in. Dano’s sister drove all the way from Lansing to be with us at the hospital, and our families made sure that I was never alone.

The surgeon told us that after a portion of my colon was removed, I would begin chemotherapy. That was a reality check. Sure, I have cancer – but chemotherapy? Shit’s getting real! Although he dismissed my concerns about fertility issues, I started to panic. If I can’t have babies, what is the point of all of this? I’ll spare you the details of my surgery, but I’ll just say that it was a miserable six days. Next came the surgery to place the port in my chest where I’d be receiving chemotherapy. It’s hard to top the colon surgery, but this one was almost worse because I had to be awake. Nobody told me what to expect, so I assumed I’d be out like a light. I also assumed that my port would have a removable external cap because someone wrongly informed me that a port means no more pokes. That’s SO not true. The port is sewed under my skin, with a catheter going through the jugular and into my heart. It creeps me out to this day, and I get poked all the time.

In the midst of all of this, Dano asked me to marry him. It’s no secret that I was not very patient about waiting for that ring! I’m still in awe that I met someone who brings me such happiness. It’s kind of ridiculous how much I like that guy. I always joke that even if I didn’t like him, I’d stick with him just for his family. Honestly, I have the best in-laws in the world, although Dano’s aren’t too bad either!:)

We started to talk about getting a second opinion for everything, and our trip to Mayo began to take shape. On the agenda: a fertility specialist, medical oncologist, nutritionist, and genetic counselor. I ended up staying in Minnesota for a couple weeks in July for fertility preservation. The odds were unknown, and I wasn’t taking any chances. Dano and I have twenty embryos frozen in a safe place, and that small comfort made the next six months bearable.

Chemotherapy began in July. At first I thought “Hey, this chemo thing is not so bad!” It caught up with me soon enough. My drug cocktail was called Folfox, which is the standard treatment for Stage III colon cancer. It stands for 5fu, leucovorin, and oxaliplatin. The oxi was the nastiest of the three. That’s the one that caused the severe sensitivity to cold. Almost immediately after my first infusion, I was unable to drink or eat anything cold, touch anything cold, or be outside if it was under 65 degrees. I started wearing mittens everywhere. I relied on my mom or Dano to crack an egg for me, peel an apple, pour juice, or open a cold doorknob. Did I mention that I was still photographing at this point? I’m not sure how I managed that. The doctors said I wouldn’t lose much hair, but it started coming out in handfuls when I washed it. I lost over half of my hair, and it now takes some very strategic back-combing to hide the bald spots when I feel like getting pretty, which doesn’t happen very often. Of course, the hair on my legs kept growing. Go figure! At least I had a great excuse to skip shaving for months at a time.

About midway through my treatments, the skin on my hands and feet started peeling off – yet another lovely side effect. I started to get even more nauseous after each treatment, and there were a few treatments that sent me to bed for a week straight. I can’t describe the overwhelming fatigue, it was even mentally exhausting. I couldn’t sleep though, so I had to add another prescription to my daily routine. It does the job, but my doctor says it’s also the reason I’ve lost my sense of balance. At least Dano and I can laugh when I bump into walls and trip over my own feet. When my white blood cells got too low, I’d have to get a shot of Neulasta, which stimulates your bones to produce more white cells. I’d compare that experience to being hit by a bus. Way worse than the chemo itself.

I do have to say that chemo has its perks for a spoiled girl like me. My mom and dad never failed to get me a “chemo present” for each treatment. From a special necklace, to gym passes, to winter boots – they had it covered. Chemo day also meant that I could ask my family for virtually anything, and they’d do it for me. This means a CLEAN HOUSE!:)Plus I had one grandma doing all of our laundry and the other grandma bringing me homemade applesauce on demand, not to mention the countless other people who so kindly cooked a meal for us. Yes, I am fully aware that I am spoiled rotten. Dano made me breakfast in bed, put my socks on for me, and always let me warm up my cold hands in his armpits. Oh, and he didn’t make me do dishes for an entire six months. If that’s not love…..

After my 11th and second to last treatment, a brand new side effect popped up out of the blue. All of a sudden, my hands and feet are numb. I can’t feel textures, and they tingle 24/7. When I tilt my head down, my feet feel like they’re being shocked. The same thing happens to my hands when I hold them away from my body. When I try to run, I can’t feel where my feet are going to land. For many people, chemotherapy induced neuropathy is permanent. I’ll just have to wait and see if my condition improves, and keep my fingers crossed that the feeling comes back! On the bright side – I think I’ve kicked my life long nail biting/picking habit. Yay!

That’s the tip of the iceberg, but I won’t bore you with any more details. I think you get the picture! Although it’s sometimes hard to put a positive spin on this experience, I still wouldn’t change a thing if I could. So many wonderful things have occurred as a direct result of my cancer, which is why I’m almost thankful for it in some demented way. Does that sound crazy? First of all, this ordeal has brought my entire family so much closer. I get to see my grandparents all the time, and there are few things I enjoy more than spending time with them. I have a better relationship with my brother, I’m closer to my dad than I ever have been before, and I will never fail to appreciate my mother again. She’s the true hero of this story. Watching your child endure cancer has to be the only thing worse than enduring it yourself. She held me up when I wanted to crawl into a hole, and she helped me physically, emotionally, and mentally – every. single. day. I know she would have traded places if she could, but I’m so glad that it wasn’t her. And you know I can never say enough good things about my Dano. He’s always been my Mr. Wonderful, so it was no surprise that he has done everything in his power to give me the strength I needed to get through this. I owe him big time.

Friends new and old have come out of the woodwork with words of advice or encouragement, a generous donation, a home cooked meal, or a shoulder to cry on. All of my dear friends who I hold so close to my heart have proved that they indeed deserve to be my best friends. I’ve never felt so loved. The community came together in a huge way, both in Crystal Falls and Rapid River…to hold a benefit in my honor. Thanks to your kindness, we were able to set up a special fund for my medical expenses and future insurance costs. The generosity of friends, family, and strangers has brought us to tears many times this year.

Most surprising of all, I’ve seen a change in myself that may have taken years to realize if not for cancer. I have SO much more self esteem! (Maybe it’s from being spoiled! Haha!) But in all seriousness, I have always worried about what other people think about me. I think I’ll always care to some extent, but for the most part I just don’t give a darn anymore! I know that I’m a nice person and so it’s not my problem if someone chooses to dislike me. Why did it take me so long to realize that? Nothing like a life threatening illness to give a person a little perspective, I guess. So, for the most part I’d say that I’m changed for the better. I do have a new pet peeve though. I seem to have lost my tolerance for overly negative people who whine too much! Don’t get me wrong – I certainly don’t think that my problems are worse than anyone else’s. I realize that we all have to vent sometimes, even if the issue is minor. Just think twice before announcing to all of Facebook that you have the worst life EVER because you ran out of windshield wiper fluid. Let’s all agree that things can always get a lot worse.

Although I had a wonderful healthcare team, I would like to especially thank “Doc” Surrell, who instead of dismissing my concerns, insisted on a colonoscopy. He kept us all laughing with his corny jokes – he is truly one of a kind. He was the one who had to give us the bad news, but he couldn’t have handled us with more care and compassion. He saved my life and I will always be grateful to him.

I’ve also discovered that there’s an incredibly special bond between people who have experienced cancer. No one else can truly understand what it’s like. To my cousin Tina, who I’ll always look up to. My dear friend Misti, who has paved the way for me with her fearlessness and support. To my new friend Erin, who reached out to a stranger to help me cope. She helped me allow myself to feel…whether that is happy, hopeful, angry, bitter, resentful, anxious, depressed, and all the emotions in between. Most of all, she taught me to cry whenever I feel like it. To a client turned friend, Angela, who lights up a room with her warmth and gives the best advice. To one of my model’s mothers, Stacey, a very special gal who was diagnosed around the same time as me…her positive energy is inspiring. To a very wise lady, Joy, whose strength and kindness has helped my family greatly. To my cherished piano teacher, Karen, who always knows exactly the right thing to say. To all of those wonderful people who shared the chemo room with me. You took me under your wing and silently taught me how to be strong. I hope you know how much you have all touched my life when I needed it most. For anyone I’m forgetting (chemo brain) and to anyone who has ever had a cancer diagnosis, or watched someone you love go through it…and especially to anyone who is still reeling from the shock of hearing your name and cancer in the same sentence: You are SO much stronger than you think you are, I promise.

xoxo
Holly

P.S. While I have your attention, I can’t help but sneak in a little public service announcement. If you have any concerns about your body, tell your doctor ASAP! If you are over 50 or if you have any symptoms of colon cancer, GET YOUR COLONOSCOPY. It’s a piece of cake, trust me.

  • Jessica Mariin - Very inspiring Holly. What you have gone through is amazing. I don’t know if I could handle it with as much grace as you. 2012 is YOUR year honey! Not on to wedding plans! And we gotta get u and Dano some Engagement pictures! I would LOVE to do your hair and makeup, no charge of course, and I’m sure Jen would be MORE than happy to take them! You’re definitely my hero! <3 Jess

  • Lexi - Holly you are truly an inspiration. To go through this and then share it with everyone show how incredible and brave you are, and it did bring tears to my eyes to read your story. It’s one thing to know that something is going on but when you go into details it really hits you somewhere deep inside. I can’t even begin to imagine what you went through but it makes me so happy to think about all the people who love you so much and were with you every step of the way. Life is unpredictable, which is scary, but you have taught me to be optimistic about everything no matter what ;)

  • K - Holly, are you able to let us know what kind of symptoms you were feeling? Maybe it will help warn someone else??

  • Kelle Clements - Holly you are one amazing woman! I give you credit for being so positive during such an eye opening experience. I’m glad that my cousin Dano has been such an awesome guy during the whole process, I kind of figured he would:) I wish you nothing but success and 100% health in 2012. Keep your chin up hun…people all over are looking up to you and praying for you.

  • Lisa Fuse - Holly-every time I look at our family picture I think of you and say a little prayer each time. My dad just finished his final rounds of radiation after grueling chemotherapy to treat his prostate cancer. Cancer touches everyone and (brutally) reminds us of what is truly important. Thank you for sharing your own words and photographs to add perspective to this journey of yours. It reminds me again that with love, family, courage and God’s grace, the indomitable spirit and will to live is supreme. We are continuing to pray for you and will continue to send goodness and light your way.

  • Mary Feathers - Holly..thank you so much for sharing this experience. I deal with mostly slightly older people who go through similiar experiences, but not someone my son’s age. I’m glad this experience made you a better person in your eyes (although you always were a good person). You just needed to realize it too. Your Mom, I know has gone through a tremendous time with this, and she is the awesome person you describe her as. I am so glad you have such wonderful people in your life…congratulations.

  • Karen - My Dear Holly! I cannot tell you how proud I am of you and the wonderful young woman you are! With all this pain, mental anguish and fear….you have risen above it and now have the opportunity to mentor by your helpful and loving nature.
    You are a true hero and I love you! Karen

  • Debbie - Holly,I am so inspired by your words,I’m so happy you can start to get your life back to a some what normal life.I pray for you every night,you are a wonderful person full of life and you deserve nothing but the best,Take care and God Bless you!

  • Betsy - You are in my thoughts and prayers Holly. Good luck to you!!! And stay strong :)

  • Cathy - There are no words to describe what you wrote. It really got to me. Well written. I hope you have an amazing future!! Love you.
    Cathy

  • Chelsea - Wow Holly! This blog is written so amazing! You are a role model to me on you views of life and always being positive! Congrats on completing your treatments and prayers for the best future! :)

  • Wendy - Holly, thank you for sharing your story. We know how you feel and how lives are changed when you become a cancer family. You are an inspiration to Taylor & I. We are now waiting for another blood test and results to see if Taylor’s dads tumor marker numbers have dropped or if we need to go back to Mayo.

  • Trisha - Beautiful in every way

  • Lisa Menard - Holly,You sound like a strong young woman.Thank you for sharing your story.God bless you & your family.Will keep you in my prayers.
    Now you can enjoy planning your wedding.Good Luck.

  • Joy - I am humbled to be mentioned in your beautiful, heartfelt written memory of your journey. The most poignant lesson I learned through my journey was that everyone has value. Right down to the dirty, smelly person you encounter in Walmart. Strange how cancer patients end up thanking God for the journey cancer takes us on.

    Long term side effects of cancer your doctor never warned you about:
    Forever Friendships, Deepened Faith, and the humbling knowledge that it has made us a better daughter, sister, and friend.

  • Sarah - Holly,
    You are an incredibly poised, articulate and strong individual…I can’t even imagine the tough, tough journey you have endured. Your beautiful positive attitude toward the future is inspiring…life is too short for negativity! You deserve every happiness life has to offer, and don’t ever lose that self-esteem! You are finally realizing what everyone else has always known :) This blog brought tears to my eyes, and I’m sure will touch many people. Thank you for your willingness to share your emotions, realities, and wisdom with us all! Best wishes for a healthy, amazing future! ~Sarah

  • Ashley - this is a beautiful documentation! i know i’m a stranger, but i found this story through live it out photo’s fb page. you have my deepest healing thoughts and most positive thinking. it was wonderful to read this. i was diagnosed with cancer (hodgkin’s disease) at 15…and even though i was blogging at that time, i could never bring myself to really write about it. thank you for doing this. you (and your chemo brain hehe) will be happy to be able to look back on this. as you know, reading about other people’s ventures makes you want to reach out and hug them. so even though it’s virtual, my arms are stretched out ready for you to fall in :)

    may you have a speedy recovery and cherish every second of life. xoxoxox – ashley

  • Stacey - Well said Holly. Thank you for sharing your journey – the good and the bad. It is crazy how the worst thing that ever happened to you is one thing you wouldn’t change. I feel the same way. There is so much that cancer CAN’T take away and so many blessings can happen. Stay strong sister!

  • Kim Mosier - Oh Holly, what a story! You really are loved by so many people and you are in my prayers nightly and will remain there for a long time. Dano is a special guy, we love him at work too. Take care and God bless you.

  • Gabrielle Bass - I came across your site BY ACCIDENT looking at Ribbons of Red’s clients. Your senior images are beautiful! I think you will be an inspiration to many people especially with the documentation of your cancer. I will say a special prayer for you, and keep you in my thoughts when I’m not having the best day. Light + Love, Gabrielle

  • Ashley Hinton - Holly-
    Just stumbled across your site and was glad that you could put into pictures what I tried to paint using words during my treatment. I am in remission as of a couple of months ago after being treated for Hodgkin’s and I am so glad that it’s over. Hopefully. They say there is a chance it could come back in the next couple of years, but I live as though it’s a closed chapter in my book.

    The pictures that you posted are powerful, and as an artist and a fellow cancer survivor, they slapped me in the face (in a good way). There are a lot of emotions that I felt during treatment and even more that have come afterward. I met a man this week that made me cry when he unexpectedly started to describe how it is for a woman to feel like she has lost a part of herself to cancer and the beauty that shines when she discovers a new layer of strength underneath.

    Thank you :)

  • admin - So happy that you are in remission, Ashley! I think we will always live with the nagging fear that it “could” come back. I’m still working on pushing those feelings out of my daily thoughts – but for now, they are too real and too close to home to ignore. Thank you so much for taking the time to read this and for sharing such kind positive vibes!! We are strong at the broken places. Hugs!!

  • admin - Hugs right back to you girl! Thank you for reaching out, it means so much to me! <3

  • Katelyn Retaskie - Well I just let myself read this for the first time. I wasn’t sure I wanted to know what you went through and what it could have been like for my dad. Not gonna lie I bawled my eyes out and I am still crying. I have always known how lucky I am to have my father but I never (and I still cant) imagine what it was like for him and for you. You are amazing. You give me hope.

  • Emily Dennis - Thanks for sharing your story Holly! Love seeing the positives out of something so crazy scary!

  • Dora Skradski - Holly, what a wonderful person you are..Thank you for sharing your story….Cancer awareness is huge! I admire your strength and inspiration. Your in my Prayers and I wish your family only the Best! <3

  • Gianna Nardi - What a motivational and inspiring story… that’s still be written!! God Bless!