How it all began
The Mama Village came to life from a broken heart. I started this journey in when my mom was diagnosed with an incurable cancer. I remember sitting in that pale green room and hearing the doctor's words echoing in my mind. I remember trying not to cry, to be strong for my mom, but in truth my entire world exploded. The beautiful woman that gave me life, was now given a death sentence. In the days that passed I started changing my life, though I didn't realize it at the time, I can see it now.
I had to face mortality and lost that innocent, indestructible sense of youth; there was now a clock ticking against my mom...against me. I didn't have a guarantee that I would be as old as my mother, or my grandfather, tomorrow wasn't a promise. I started living in the now. Instead of the silly dreams of my twenties where I was striving for the American Dream, for perfection, for the theory that nothing is ever good enough and there is always somewhere higher to climb. Instead I started focusing on what matters; family, friends, life, freedom. I negotiated with my boss and was able to take my mom to every doctor appointment and sit with her so she would never have to be alone on this journey. I called her every day when I got off work just to hear her voice, incase that was the last time.
I nearly lost my own life bringing my wonderful son into the world, and I saw how precious life truly is as I held that 2 lb. 13 oz. baby boy. He was tiny and he needed me. He didn't need all the expensive things in the world. He just needed me to fight for him, breast feed him, care for him and show him the world. That was what life was about. Love. Watching him grow stronger and my mom fight for three years of chemotherapy, I started following my dream, which was writing. I wanted desperately to bring books to children and young adults to give them hope and friends in a world that is so vast. I remember the power books held for me and still hold for me and I wanted to give that back to the world.
I realize now, that my mom has passed that all the changes I made over the last few years were to be healthy, happy, balanced, help others and find a freedom to live. The only thing we get to take with us when we die is our memories. Not a single dollar or trinket goes with us, we must leave it all behind. So it is all about memories.
A friend of mine had brain cancer and two little boys at home. I can't tell you how often I think about her, probably almost as often as I think of my own son. I felt once again helpless to do anything. Just as I had with my mom, and it was that love of Tyson and my mom that truly brought me to this moment. I can't take away pain or fear or chemotherapy, but I can try to make life a little easier on all mamas. In the summer of 2016, I will be introducing an activity app for the Mama Village to make it easier on us mamas to have fun with our little people with less stress and strain on us. I will be blogging, publishing a children's book for mama's with cancer and writing reviews of children's books. All of this to build hope and community and memories for us all to carry with us.