Birthday wishes

Next week I am THRILLED to be turning 36!  Age is a privilege in cancerland and I’m all about celebrating!  Last year, I celebrated with the theme, “I’m 35 and Still Alive” and celebrated my entire birth month.  I ate dessert of the month.  I received birthday cards from the Monday Night Bible Study at my church.  They’ve continued that tradition this year and the Bible verse on yesterday’s card struck me in many ways.

He comes alongside us when we go through hard times and before you know it, He brings us alongside someone else going through hard times so that we can be there for that person just as God was there for us.  2 Corinthians 1:4

I have experienced the absolute truth in this passage.  My most intimate friendships are with those other young moms with Stage IV breast cancer.  I also experienced this truth when I participated in a breast cancer walk in 2008.  Meeting others from all over the country that “get it” was incredibly powerful.  And, for my birthday, I want for someone else to experience the power of being alongside others who “get it.”

I’ve received many powerful, yet private, responses from my last post.  In my friend’s latest post, Out of Darkness Overnight she states her desire to participate in a national walk to break the silence and bring issues of depression and suicide into the light.  She has registered for the walk and someone has generously donated a plane ticket to get her there.  Someone else has donated a hotel room for her stay.  Now she has to raise at least $1,000 to participate.

What I want for my birthday is for your donation to support my friend.  It wasn’t that long ago (1950’s) that the New York Times refused to print an article with the words “breast” or “cancer” in it.  A lot has happened in bringing awareness to breast cancer.  I want to help with bringing awareness to mental health, depression, and suicide.

Please, help me CELEBRATE my birthday by donating to help others reach their birthday.

Donate here

Here is more information from their website:

About the walk:  The Out of the Darkness Overnight is a walk like no other. It’s a 16-18 mile journey through the night, from dusk until dawn where a courageous community of men and women like you will break the silence and bring the issues of depression and suicide into the light.
Why we walk:  A suicide attempt happens every minute of every day. Every 14 minutes, someone in the U.S. dies by suicide. These statistics are staggering and yet remain hidden and not discussed. We walk to bring the issues of suicide, depression, and mood disorders into the spotlight and to continue the work of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention – work that will truly save lives.
Who puts the event on:  The Overnight is organized by the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, the leading national not-for-profit organization exclusively dedicated to understanding and preventing suicide through research, education and advocacy, and to reaching out to people with mental disorders and those impacted by suicide.


Thank you for helping me celebrate!


Living legendary as a mom with Stage IV breast cancer. Author of Learning to Live Legendary and What You Might Not Know: My Life as a Stage IV Cancer Patient.
  1. Susana Pacheco Hollinger Reply

    Love you more than words can say!!! Happy Early Birthday!!

    • Jen
      Jen Reply

      Thanks for your support!! xoxo

  2. Tammi Clifton Reply

    Jen, I pray that all of your birthday wishes come true!! Love, Tammi xoxo

  3. Jen
    Jen Reply

    Happy to celebrate another year older! xoxo

  4. Laura Dahl Reply

    Have a great day/week/YEAR! Happy Birthday 🙂


    • Jen
      Jen Reply

      Awesome seeing for lunch, Laura. Our group has such a special place in my heart!

  5. Billie Mitchell Reply

    No matter what the calendar or the mirror says, I’m sorta always 36ish on the inside. May you have the same experience some (way in the future) day. Happiest of Happy Birthdays to you!!

    • Jen
      Jen Reply

      You definitely are 36 in attitude, Billie!!!

  6. Mary Ann Reply

    You are thriving in your thirties Girlfriend! Blessings, blessings, blessings! MA

  7. Sondria Browne Reply

    Thanks for sharing your story

  8. Heidi Britton Reply

    Welcome to 36 my friend!!! Much love to you!

  9. Jessica Sullivan Reply

    Hey birthday buddy!!!! Another blessed year to celebrate! Enjoy your special day. Thank you for continuing to allow us to follow in your journey. Aithen and I pray for you every night which leads to alot of questions from him. You have become an educator even in our home! You are always in my heart and I’m thankful for having taken Sociology of Law because without it I would have missed meeting you. I know we barely know each other but like everyone you meet…you have touched my life! Thank you and Happy Birthday!!!!

  10. Diana Burnsides Reply

    Jen~happy birthday! I am 36 in a few weeks as well. Your website looks great, dear friend and your trip to the Caribbean sounded very special. What amazing parents you have! I think of you and Corbin and pray for you often. Xoxo Di.

  11. April I [Heart] My Life Reply

    Happy Birthday, Jen! I just turned 36 in March, too. I spent my 35th year treating breast cancer. My daughter is 5. I just watched your Live Legendary video on YouTube. Beautiful! Best wishes to you!

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