For days I have been contemplating about how I should write this post. This family is one of the most strong, determine, incredible, courageous, and caring I know. Everyone has a story and every story needs to be shared.
Since October is Breast Cancer Awareness month I couldn't think of a more deserving family to highlight this month then the Schiess family. I started doing photography for this reason. Every family needs to have these precious memories on film to be remembered. Having lost two brothers myself, pictures of them are more important to me then anything. When the smell of their hair, the sound of their laughter, or seeing their smiling faces fade; the pictures don't. They are always there to remind me. A glance at one picture stirs emotions that have been forgotten, faded, or buried deep within you. My hope is that Eric and Mandy and their children will cherish these pictures, as I know they will; because you may never get a tomorrow with the ones you love. I'm so gratefull I still have Mandy to be an amazing example to me. Her strength is eminate in her family and I know her strength comes from Eric and her Heavenly Father. Thank you Mandy and Eric for letting me share a very small part of your Journey with others!! Love you guys!
I first became friends with Mandy (cool name I know! ) when she made me one her incredible home decor crafts.. Let me back up a second. For those who don't know, Mandy and Eric Schiess own one of the coolest craft business ever check out her blog On The Avenue here... One day I came to pick up my purchased item and nearly spent 4 hours there talking to Mandy!!hahha.. We shared our life stories, laughed, even cried together, and became instant friends. Gees we are so much alike even the same name, its scary!!! haha A better friend I couldn't have found either. I have been so blessed in my life to meet the most influential people, and Mandy is definitely one of them.
My story doesn't end there. Earlier this year Mandy was diagnosed with breast cancer. I'm not going to go into all the details for her privacy sake; it was pretty intense including surgeries. She told me it got to the point that her children would even get anxious and nervous when she would go to the doctor. I couldn't imagine being in their shoes and worrying about wether your mom will be ok. Being a mother you are supposed to be the one who worries over your children not the other way around. Nevertheless Mandy never missed a beat. She was still posting, painting, and crafting for others; beautifying their homes. I'm sure she slowed down some at least I hope for her sake she did!! :) haha But outwardly you could never see it. She is just that amazing!! As for Mandy and her story thus far the prognosis is great, beyond great even! I know this is not always the case of outcome, but for now we can celebrate with her and her family and all the great doctors who have cared for her during her fight and recovery that has been a success!!! Although she has experienced trials and hard times, they are just stepping stone on the path of her incredible Journey and on to many more that lay ahead.
In the end, it’s not going to matter how many breaths you took, but how many moments took your breath away - Shing Xiong.