Unpause My Life

One of the very worst things about being sick is that I felt like I had to put my life on pause. In so so many ways, but one of the biggest was leaving a job that I really loved and was super excited about. My boss was absolutely amazing (and my mom is still obsessed with him to this day) and not just because he covered my healthcare for 6 months even though I had only officially worked at the company for 3. And this is a startup. I was employee number two. I secretly think he was paying for this out of his own pocket.

But clearly, as usual, I digress. So before hurricane cancer I had a job. And I was SO into this job. I loved everything about it - what we were creating, the artists we worked with, the photography, the mission (giving underpaid, under recognized artists a platform). It was everything I had dreamed about in a job.

I have talked a lot about the things I have lost to cancer - my hair, my body, my skin. But I have never talked about leaving my job because in some ways it was the most painful. What if I could never work again? What if I was sick forever, and never got to do something creative and awesome and different with my life?

Not working was something I really needed to do, and something I am grateful for almost every day. Especially every day that I felt so terrible I could barely get out of bed, let alone work, let alone do a good job working at a startup. I know in my heart that I could not have worked, and been as successful in treatment as I was. But sometimes that doesn't make me feel any less like a non contributing slug.

Cancer takes a lot of things away from you, and this sense of purpose, of being a contributing, functioning adult, is one of the most profound ones - even when you know it's the absolute best thing and feel really lucky to be in a position where you can stop working to focus on your health. It just feels like everyone else is off doing amazing things while you are lying in bed feeling like poo.

Plus, sometimes, when you are a social function, it is painfully awkward to tell people what you "do" (some answers: writer, stay-at home puppy mom, breast cancer abolitionist, and my least fave 'in treatment') And of course, that's all anybody ever wants to know - especially now that I now longer "look sick".

So anyways, a few days ago my old boss reached out to me and told me that the company was doing a kickstarter campaign and asked if I felt up to getting involved. I was super into this idea, because I feel like stuff like this should be funded via crowdsourcing - let the people who either support the mission, or just appreciate a good t-shirt, be the ones driving the business from the beginning. It also felt really good to be included in the process again, it felt like hitting "unpause" on my life. I was necessary again, I had feedback to give. And of course, one of the best things about illness is that it really gives you perspective. I no longer have the energy - or the ability - to do things I'm not super excited or passionate about. And I found myself just as excited about this project as I was 9 months ago. That was one thing that hadn't changed. It was a good idea and I wanted to be part of making it into a real company.

So flash forward to now. I am really proud of the way the campaign turned out. The kickstarter is now live, and it is beautiful.  It is already on it's way, and people are as into the idea as I am.

And so, if you have some time you should check it out. If you don't, I still love you. It's not finding a cure for cancer, but it is helping some really cool people get the credit (and the comp) they deserve and I think the t-shirts are sort of little amazing wearable works of art.

The rewards for giving are kind of awesome (my favorite is party with Baron Wolman, the original Rolling Stone magazine photographer) and, of course the shirts, because duh, the shirts are really what it's all about. And I am not just saying this because I got a free shirt today.



So obviously the pictures are of me in my new shirt. (Kind of obsessed, don't mind at all if we are all twinsies)

I do feel a little bit like I am rhyming and spinning and breaking and writing (although the spinning might be my head, the breaking might be a good euphemism for the cancer - prob not what the creator intended, guess what don't care.)

Jacket from J Crew (although it was much, much cheaper in the store and not just because they were having a big 30% off everything sale, whatup j crew??), headphones are frends Taylor (those of you who follow me on instagram know I am obsessed), cutoffs are Joe's Jeans from 5 years ago.



Again, I digress. I just love this shirt.
Thank you in advance for checking out the kickstarter and if you are feeling too lazy to click  I stole the video from their page and embedded it below.

You guys unpause me all the time ;)

xoxoxo
D