Many years ago, my aunt and uncle had this lovely young couple living in the apartment in their house. The woman, a beautiful red-head named Melissa, and her husband were newly married and we would occasionally see them coming and going...I'd think, "boy, they look so happy, youthful, and ready to take on the future." Well, little did they know that their future was going to be a road with a lot of bumps. The first roadblock occurred when I heard that the Melissa's younger sister, Erin, in her early twenties, was diagnosed with a rare form of Leukemia. Just when things were looking a little bit up, Melissa, seven months pregnant with her first child, was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphona. Ugh, right? Well, these two sisters didn't just sit around and mope; Erin wrote an inspirational book, My So-Called Normal Life, as well as wrote an amazing column for Glamour magazine documenting her cancer treatments. And now, the sisters are taking on a much bigger project and need your help! 

Erin on the left and Melissa on the right in the first photo. Banner from Erin's website.
In Erin's own words: "10 years ago I was diagnosed with leukemia. Without effective treatment I would have had as little as five years to live. Today, thanks to the amazing, miracle-drug Gleevec—a pill I take every day—I am healthy and have a life that makes me feel like one of the luckiest people around. My sister, Melissa, is also a survivor. She was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma a year after my diagnosis (she was 27 and seven months pregnant at the time) and went through grueling treatments and ultimately a stem cell transplant. Today she, too, is cancer free. And we have five healthy children between us. We have been through a lot but we have so much to be grateful for. We are not only surviving, we are thriving. That’s why we’ve chosen to celebrate our cancerversaries (10 for me, seven post-transplant for my sister), by raising $100,000 for LLS, giving back to the organization that has given us so much." 

$100, 000 seems like a lot of money, right?! I know. But, these women can do it. Not only do I believe in them, but I believe in them because they believed in themselves. So, how can we help

Well, we love sister-acts around here at Lovely, so let's all pitch and see what we can do:

1. You can donate money and help fund the treatment and research for other blood cancers. 
2.  Bid on a silent raffle for items such as, restaurant certificates, tickets to sporting events, jewelry, spa trips, etc. Upload the donor form here: MWOY 2012 Auction Commitment Form
3. Attend one of their events (and they have some swanky events coming up!) More info here.
4. And of course, spread the word, Lovelies! Like the sisters on Facebook, follow Erin on twitter (@erinzruddy), and keep checking the website for more info!  

Sometimes it's not easy to walk alone in this world, and that's why we have sisters. Though it was probably the hardest thing imaginable to have both women go through cancer, at least they had each other's hand to hold, right? Donate for your sister, your mother, your grandmother, and for yourself. So, today, instead of getting your Starbucks, donate $5, $10, or even $1 to The Leukemia and Lymphomia Society, and know that you are helping save someone's world. 

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