Friday, May 8, 2015

Komentucky Derby

Last Saturday we donned our most festive party-wear and headed out to a winery for the Komentucky Derby in honor of my friend Beth, who recently had her final surgery on the road to recovery since being diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer eight months ago.

Looking festive in bow tie and big hat. 
Quick backstory on my hat: I had borrowed two great hat options, one from a friend of a friend and one from the counselor at David's school. Both were adorable, but the friend of a friend's didn't fit on my big head (!) and the other just didn't go with the bright yellow dress I (obviously) ended up wearing. So I picked up a white straw hat on Friday at Target, and then on our way to pick up Chipotle Friday night, I had David stop at Hobby Lobby so I could run in and grab some decorative accessories. We got there at 7:45pm and they close at 8:00, so I literally ran through the store like it was Supermarket Sweep. I snagged a bouquet of yellow and pink flowers (the cheapest I could find, fake flowers were also 50% off), rang the bell in the fabric department so the girl would cut me half a yard of yellow netting and half a yard of white netting ($1.67/yard), and then asked her where I could find feathers. The craft department was in the back corner, so I bolted and found a package of bright yellow feathers ($1.99, plus I used a 40% off coupon). The next morning I used straight pins and a big of hot glue to put the hat together. After the derby was over, I carefully disassembled the hat, and now I can wear the plain white straw hat this summer!

with Beth
She looks fabulous and her hair is coming back as thick as ever and with some curl to it that is driving her bonkers. She spoke at the event and her speech made me cry. (You can watch it here, if you're interested.) 

Beth's dad walked up to stand with her when she got emotional. She told us after that she didn't think she was going to cry, but I told her that when people talk about important stuff, they are supposed to cry. 
She talked about how terrifying it was to get that diagnosis. Now here she is, on the other side of it all, but it's not like she'll ever leave that behind. She's done everything she can to diminish her risk of recurrence, but obviously the fear doesn't go away.

Still, for now we are celebrating. Beth and her family have been through so much in the past eight months, and it was great to just hang out with them on a beautiful day, wear a ridiculous hat, and spend a little money on raffles and drinks, knowing it was going to a good cause. 

the college girls who live in STL (the rest of our group never left our college town!)
It's kind of funny how I used to think being grown up would mean getting dressed up and going to benefit events and really being grown up means I actually know people who are affected by terrible things (and obviously I've experienced loss myself) so really it means that I get dressed up and go to benefits because we're desperate to try and help.

It's still a good time, it's just personal in a way I hadn't imagined.

Bridget's Brigade is an organization that works to not only donate money to cancer research, but also to help ease the burden on women who are dealing with the daily reality of cancer treatments in our local area. (Bridget is the woman who is first talking on the video). She organizes this event each year, and we were so glad to be a part of it.

And we are so very, very glad that, 9 months since her diagnosis and 10 months since first finding that little lump, Beth has been through three major surgeries, six rounds of chemo, the loss (and regrowth) of her hair, and has come out on the other side.

Here's to big hats and good health. Cheers!


  1. Go Beth! The event looks fun 🏇🏻

  2. Dahling, you look MAHvellous!! What a great way to support your friend & have some fun at the same time. I hope she continues to do well.