About Amy

I am an artist, writer, graphic designer, teacher, stepmother, wife, sister, daughter, friend, counselor, athlete, fabulous chef (if I do say so myself), and spontaneous living room dance party enthusiast. I believe that we have it in us to embrace all of life's experiences with flexibility and zest, as long as we remain emotionally truthful and expressive, and seek out support and companionship along the way.

When I began this blog in 2005, I was working as a counselor in an abortion clinic and had just suffered my second miscarriage. Having children, or not having children, was very much on my mind. I described motherhood as my "urgent but ambivalent aspiration." I wanted to write about that, about my work, and about "choice" from this wider context.

And then my marriage quite suddenly fell apart, and I found myself writing about that too.

Over the years, this blog has become a haven for me, a refuge, and a lens through which I frame my experience and gain perspective. When I learned that I have breast cancer, there was no question in my mind: I would blog my way through this as well.

My hope is that by sharing my story, readers might find solace, humor, insight, inspiration – something of use to take into battle in their own life's challenges.

I have received so much in return. Watching my readership grow from a handful each week to hundreds daily has been thrilling. Some readers have been with me for years, for which I am humbled and awed and eternally grateful. What a gift it is to have a tribe following my journey and cheering me along! We all deserve that!

These days I'm working hard to update the blog. I want to list resources for people with cancer and those that support them. The woefully out-of-date fertility and choice links need revamping. Plus I want to provide tips and encouragement on gathering a tribe of supporters around whatever you face, whether we're talking about fun, self-imposed challenges or not fun, life-altering traumas.

I've also begun a YouTube channel, where I vlog about cancer, life, and the silly cute funny things my dog Millie does to entertain me every day. If there's anything you'd like to see there, or here on the blog, I'd love to hear from you. Drop me an email, or post a comment below.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

I admire your bravery, and think that your honest and direct discourse will help others learn how to address difficult, painful issues and experiences. Thank you for sharing your stories, and teaching us that whatever challenges that we are faced with can be dealt with and talked about openly, with a sense of humor, but most importantly, with a greater purpose to eradicate fear.

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry for all the "not so good" stuff that has been sent your way. I lost 5 babies and know the deep loneliness, bitterness, sadness, and just plain anger that goes along with it, but your ability to face it head on and give the experience voice is breathtaking. You are amazing. I wish you strength in your current battle.

Tammie

Anonymous said...

Stumbled upon your blog and stayed.

I feel a deep connection to someone so far away on another continent who cares so deeply.
Go get better and better Amy!
<jane

Anonymous said...

You can do this! I know it is tough but it gets better. I was diagnosised last June and after 3 surgeries, 6 cycles of chemo (also did a clinical trial) and 30 doses of radiation, I am just about 80% back to normal in just a little over 2 months since my last chemo cycle. I did in fact have my first "bad hair day" today, which at this point still consists of about a half dozen half inch hairs sticking straight up rather then laying flat like the rest. Keep fighting and laugh whenever you can, it really is the best medicine.

Anonymous said...

Stumbled on your blog last night and kept on reading!

I was diagnosed with breast cancer in January this year. I am writing my way through it too on my facebook page (shafeenaaz nurmahomed). Can I add you on FB?

Love the way you write...the honesty of your accounts and the incredible way you have with words!

S

Anonymous said...

Do try alternative medicines as support--Reikki , healing touch, and acupuncture were all a great help to me. Acupuncture is especially helpful during chemo.

Anonymous said...

For me, lymphedema was a harder thing to accept than the mastectomies (no reconstruction).
Try to find a local resource for treatments with the LymphStarPro, cold laser. It reversed mine to the point I am free of the sleeve and gauntlet except for flights. Phone around. I found that service at an acupuncture office in the San Diego area.
Hang in there. My thoughts are with you. Teresa M.

Anonymous said...

I really like your blog. Do you have an email that is not public?
Karen

Amy said...

Hi to everyone who has commented here. I'm sorry I've been slow in responding but I do read these as they come in, and it means a lot to me to hear from each of you and I appreciate the afvice too.

If you have not been following, I'm happy to report that I am doing well now, even completing a 70-mile triathlon about a month ago and had a blast doing it. I hope you all are doing well and thriving too!

Karen, you can email me at amy at amykstudio dot com

Thanks!!

Anonymous said...

Dear Amy,
How can I ever thank you for your generously giving of yourself. I was diagnosed with Invasive Ductal Carcinoma w/ calcificstions. I am a total wreck. The biopsy was like woah ! The MRI with dye was a nightmare. 11 times they missed my vein and my arm blew up with dye ! Had surgery last week and now radiation starts on addition to my protocal. I was terrified. I mean just rooted in fear regarding radiation. I have severe claustrophobia.
You can imagine how fun this has been for me :)
Also a irrational fear of needles. LOL
I am happy to say that I no longer have that fear.
Your videos have helped me so much. I feel like I know you because you are in my life everyday. I just had to reach out and say Thank You Sister Sledge !!!
Because of you I am prepared and feel not so alone. Keeping healthy and swimming just like you did. My goodness there is so much live in my heart that you shared so unselfishly.
My experience is so much easier because of you. I wish you Love Light Laughter and JOY.
Thank you for changing my life.
Madlove
Sheila

Amy said...

Wow Sheila that comment was so nice and just the right timing to bring a tear to my eye. You are awesome! Congratulations on getting though such unpleasant challenges and coming out the other side beaming! I'm proud to have been part of your journey.
Madlove back atcha

Stephanie Kruvelis said...

My name is Stephanie Kruvelis, and I am a student at the University of South Florida. This semester I am participating at an internship at Darna & Co. The company makes a wristband that prevents nausea and vomiting. The bracelet is called the No Mo Nausea Band.
The band is drug free and is allowed in hospital rooms. The band is combined with Peppermint Oil and Menthol. The band is worn at the P6 point on the wrist. The oils from the band is absorbed into the skin. The band combines aromatherapy with acupressure. The band is waterproof and more appealing than competitor products.
For breast cancer month, the company is running a donation. For every No Mo Nausea band purchase in October, one band will be donated to a cancer patient at Moffit in Tampa, Florida. There will also be an upcoming event.

The band can be purchased at www.nomonausea.com or on www.amazon.com
Bands can be purchased for $1 off by using a promo code SAVBOOBS

I want to bring awareness to this donation, and it would be an honor if you would include it in one of your blogs.

Friends Don’t Let Friends Get Nauseous

Thank you for your time,

Stephanie Kruvelis