Since the age of 7, the word Cancer has always stood so close to my heart. "Although the disease can dwindle a life away it can never erase a memory or a spirit to defeat." This author unknown quote is apart of my reasoning on how one day WE will over come cancer. Looking through the pictures above it is clear that I helped with a local pageant but what you do not see is the amazing young woman this pageant was for. Ashley is a 17 year old from Smyrna, who was tragically diagnosed with Stage 4 Cancer. Thinking back on your life, I am sure one of the most important moments you remember is "ruling" the school as a senior in high school, there was nothing Ashley was looking forward more than that. A straight A student, with softball scouts looking at her at almost every game her junior year, never saw the curve ball that was coming her way. Missing out on most of her senior year thanks to chemotherapy and other treatments to slow the cancer down was not the focus of this young woman, it was to get better, encourage others, and find a cure.
Ashley enjoyed pageants so much and was actually a contestant last year in the Miss Music City Outstanding Teen pageant, that is why there was no question what type a fundraiser we would have for this young lady. At this pageant each girl from age 2 to 19 was able to enter the pageant knowing that there fee was going to such a good cause. Silent auction items lined the stage so that even more donations could come in to such a deserving young lady. As the pageant came to a close Ashley and her mom were brave enough to speak about the year they faced head on. I was so impressed how honest and true they were about each detail the disease took on her and their family, not many people can tell the details they did and having such a positive outlook.
It is such a blessing to see young women taking a stand and helping other young ladies better their life, their courage and their spirit and that is exactly what this day ment to all of us. Ashley's mother said it best, "when there wasn't a door to be opened, we built one and painted it what color we wanted it to be." I have no doubt one day we will find a cure for cancer, but until then I will build as many pink, purple, and yellow doors as I can; one for each person I have lost in my life.