How Think Pink helped Cindy’s fight

Think Pink for Cindy - a 32 year old mom of 2 kids loses her fight with cancer with less than 2 weeks notice. Read the story and would you please consider sharing this to help the family? Thank-you! via Funky Junk Interiors

I could never have planned last week in a million years.

We had planned to go camping. Work was cleared off the calendar, and I worked at deadlines so the time could be freed up. But there were always delays and reasons not to get out the door. And now I know why. Little did I know what exactly I was freeing up time for.

Think Pink for Cindy - pink picture support poured in while Cindy fought cancer.

 My niece-in-law Cindy fell ill with a sudden bout of cancer and was fighting for her life. I along with Cindy’s dear friends Lisa and Amy fired up Think Pink for Cindy, a Facebook group that offered moral support, prayer, and a ton of Think Pink pictures to help encourage Cindy during her battle.



Here is the outstanding result of Think Pink.

In 2 days, the group sprung to over 800 members! I needed help from new moderators (thanks!) to keep up with the flow of traffic, letting everyone in. The rush of support was amazing. More amazing than you’ll ever know. Cindy was overheard exclaiming, “This is CRAZY!”

And that makes me smile.

pink Facebook header

I  changed my FB banner to reflect the warrior mood this all put me in. We were this band of 800 throwing up encouraging messages faster than you could blink. It went on for three days.

And then the unthinkable happened. A message that stunned everyone.

Shocking. Just like that. Everything came to a screeching halt. We lost our girl.

I sat at my computer with my jaw open. Facebook statuses started to spring up on how this could have happened. It was just so sudden and shocking.

The complications were just too great. Cindy was an incredible fighter. Unfortunately, she just couldn’t pull through. It was such an emotional loss.

Why?

Think Pink for Cindy

Zoe Brown Photography

Other than the fact that so many loved her, she leaves behind two young children and a husband that adores her. They had just moved from Ontario and were making a new start in Alberta, Canada.

But even more than that? They tried for 7 years to have a new baby. Their little lady is only 14 months old.


How does one even start? How do you go home and just start over? We don’t really know.

Think Pink for Cindy - a website of support for a 32 yr old victim of cancer

Right after Cindy left us, I needed to punch through the feeling of defeat and built a website.  It’s not fancy, it’s just a blog, but it’s a place to call home for now for those that would like to stay in touch with the family’s story, to read up on Cindy and to help support their new journey through comments, prayer and donations. Because Cindy didn’t have life insurance. 

She made mention of it when in the hospital but it was too late to do anything about it. She thought she was going in for a checkup and 2 weeks later never came home. Luckily, Brad is employed, however his job also takes him on the road on occasion. Cindy was a stay at home mom. 


Your continued good thoughts and prayers would be so much appreciated for this family. And if you feel so inclined to make even a small donation to help, that would be beyond amazing. Thank-you!

Cindy will be so terribly missed by so many. But I just can’t tell you how grateful I am that you helped make her feel loved right when she really REALLY needed it. I will NEVER forget it.

~ Don’t allow this post to make you feel awful. Use it to better yourself. Trivial things really are trivial. Live life today like you may be gone tomorrow. Love those around you and let them love you back. Be prepared for the inevitable. Become the person you wish you were starting today. Think Pink to help remember what really matters. Love. Just love. Thank-you for leaving us that gift, Cindy. – Donna ~

In memory of Cindy.








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  1. I’m so sorry to hear that she is gone. I lost my own cousin and best friend last year to breast cancer and its to hard to accept that for all the efforts done…nothing can stop it. I feel so badly for her family.

  2. Donna my heart is utterly broken for you and her sweet family. There is an Angel in Heaven looking down. All of you are in my thoughts and prayers.

  3. I am very touched by this story, the video make me feel like I knew her. Who ever made this tape thank you from all women who fight terminal illness. Thank You and Cindy I did not know you BUT YOU HAVE TOUCHED ME MARILYN FAIRY LEONARE RENO NEVADA

    THANK YOU CINDY

    • Thanks Marilyn, I created both slide shows with Cindy’s pictures as well as what the Think Pink gang left for her. Two very special tributes that I know will be appreciated by many. Thanks for the kind words.

  4. I was truly stunned to see this post.I thought she was pulling through. How to cope with such a sudden loss? May God be with you all to give you strength and hope. You’ve done an amazing thing for Cindy. She was blessed, as you all are. Prayers and Hugs.
    Kathy

  5. My heart breaks for those of you who are suddenly left without a mother, wife, friend… Such a shock! As I sit here with tears running down my face, I pray especially for those 2 sweet little children who have lost the dearest person on earth to them and for Brad. Words fail me as I try to imagine life suddenly bereft of a spouse ‘that meant the world to him’. May God lift you up in this time of incredible loss and grief.

    And God bless you, Donna, as you stand by the family in this dark valley. You are not only a ‘junk warrior’, you are a ‘support warrior’. They’re blessed to have you. Praying for you all as you go through this. From my heart, Rachel

  6. When I read the sentence I started crying. I don’t even know her but I just kept looking at the faces of her adorable children. I can’t even imagine how much they’ll miss their mom. And her husband … How challenging this will be for him. Your family is in my prayers. I am so very, very sorry for your loss.

  7. I’m so shocked. It feels like we’ve all lost a friend. Thank you for sharing your story with us so that she knew how special she was during those last days. How awful for this young family and especially her daughter who won’t even really remember her. Sad, sad, sad.

    Stay strong my friend and know that many people are praying for peace for this young family.

  8. I am SO, SO sorry for your loss. This is a terrible disease that also took someone very special to me one year ago last July, my very dear friend Becky, at the age of 37. She also left behind a husband and 3 young children… I totally understand your families feelings of shock and utter dismay. But, the pain will subside (eventually) and what you’ll be left with is a wonderful memory of the beautiful spirit she is. Wishing you much comfort through this difficult time.

  9. Donna,
    I’m so very sorry to hear this sad news. Prayers have been said for this young mother, and I will be sure to keep praying for her entire family.I just lost my SIL from cancer back in April, she also had a short notice, that this was going to happen.

    Blessings,
    Linda

  10. I’m so sorry. I followed over on the fb page you had set up for Cindy. I checked the page so often to see how she was doing and was so shocked to read the message that she had lost her battle. :( She fought hard for Brad and for her babies. But unfortunately God had other plans for her. I’m sure those little ones will have her watching over them from heaven. Again I am so sorry for your loss.

    Kim

  11. I am so sorry for your loss. As I watched the video I felt like I knew her as well. You could just see what a wonderful person she was. My heart breaks for her husband and those little children. I like Nina, lost my best friend/cousin 1 1/2 years ago but to H1N1. In three weeks she was gone.
    (((((HUGS))))) and prayers.
    What kind of cancer was that. I know when you have a baby it accelerates. Someone I knew died 4 months after having her baby of melanoma.

  12. I too sit here with tears running down my cheeks. I didn’t know her either but it’s funny somehow blogging makes us feel as if we “know” each other. I think of my brother who lost his wife to breast cancer 2 yrs ago and she left behind 8 beautiful children. He watched her suffer for 4 very long years and waste away to literally 70lbs when she passed. I’m so very sorry for Cindy’s husband and children and will lift them up in prayer. It was be challenging but God has a plan for them. Prayers for you also that you find peace and comfort knowing she did not suffer and she’s in a much better place. I’m so sorry for your loss.

  13. Donna,
    Sitting here crying as I type this.I am so very sorry.But I know she is in heaven with beautiful wings.I will continue to pray for Brad and there children.May God watch over them all.She touched so many lives even till the very end!
    xx
    Anne

  14. I’m so sorry for your shocking loss of such a sweet and loving woman. May God watch over all of you during this incredibly tough time.

  15. I’m so sorry to hear about Cindy. The video is just precious and I’m sure it’s only a glimpse of how Beautiful Cindy was as a person, friend, wife and mom! I will share it on my fb page to encourage my friends to donate. Again…so sad.

  16. I am in shock, and very saddened for you and those little kids and husband. So Sorry to read about this. I was wanting to know what kind of Cancer can be so aggressive it takes someone in two weeks? It kind of freaks me out. Sorry again to you and the familyl.

  17. I am so very sorry for the loss that you and her family have to endure. I will keep all of you in my prayers and thoughts.

    May Cindy’s love for her children,Brad, and family, forever surround them and carry them through these difficult times and life.

    So sorry. Blessed be.

  18. Tearing are just rolling down my face as I read this, I’m SO sorry to hear of this tragedy! It’s just not fair, I HATE cancer!!!!! My prayers go out to the family.
    I’m so sorry!

  19. So sorry for your family’s loss. When I first read her story, I had hoped/prayed for a different outcome. May God be with her children, husband and family.

  20. Oh my goodness, this is so very sad. I can’t even begin to imagine what she and the family must’ve gone through when they realized the seriousness of her condition, and it’s even harder to imagine what they are all going through now. So much heartache to be put on such a precious family in such a short amount of time – just truly, utterly, sad. I am so sorry for all of them. They will remain at the top of my prayer list for some time to come.

    How nice for them to have someone like you to rally the troops for them, and for her, to bring all of that inspiration and prayers to them in their time of need. A valliant effort indeed.

    Again, so very sorry. It’s almost surreal. I expected to read a different update, but as we all know very well, God often has different means to an end than we do, and His ways are perfect, and we have to trust in His decisions. I expect those children to grow up with their mother’s hand always on their shoulder.

  21. Oh my word Donna I am so sorry! I just saw Beth’s tweet on your post so I jumped over and I am in shock. My heart goes out to her husband and kids. I am so sorry for your family. Wishing you all peaceful thoughts, hugsxoxox.

  22. Beautiful tribute… love the video… I will keep her family in my thoughts and prayers.. My mom has lung cancer and we lost a niece to cancer at the age of 31.. I know everyone has someone they love or knows someone with cancer.. Keep up what your doing.

  23. Oh Donna, this is just so unbelieveable….why do these things happen? I’m so sorry for your loss and will keep you and her family in my thoughts and prayers.

    I guess this shows we never really know how much time we will have and should live life to the fullest:-)

    xoxo
    Kathleen

  24. Crying at my computer but amazed at how God gave her such grace and strength during this time. Thank you Donna for sharing this woman and her family with us. Can’t wait to meet both her and her husband in heaven.

  25. This story just makes me feel so horrible. Such a gorgeous woman and what seems an amazing family to match, lost way too soon. So, so, so sorry for your loss of someone that clearly touched so many lives. I hope that her family’s future is filled with joy and good health. Rest in peace Cindy.

  26. Cancer robs us all of so much. Friends, family, strangers… I know from your words that Cindy was a fighter! I wanted to call her a survivor. Heartfelt sympathy to you and your family Donna. I will share this and encourage others to donate, as I intend to.

  27. Donna you have done a wonderful job capturing Cindy’s beautiful spirit. I didn’t know her, only through you and her friends and family posting on the fb page. Yes, my heart breaks for her children, family and friends. I don’t understand why, but I know she suffers no more. I’ve said it before and share again here, that if anything else the outpouring of love and compassion Cindy’s children will see when they read these stories, comments, pink photos and more…I pray it gives them hope when they see how much their mommy was loved.

  28. Thank you so much for sharing Cindy’s story. I held my 6 month old daughter on my lap, with my 3 year old son playing next to us, as I read your heartbreaking words. I couldn’t stop the tears as I thought about her children growing up without their mother and imagined my own having to grow up without me.

    I am unable to donate money at this time but want to do something else for Cindy’s children. I sew memory quilts as a home business, usually using children’s clothing and/or adults clothing, but also photographs. As I read your story I began to think about what I would want my children to have to help them remember me if I couldn’t be with them. I would want them to have something to cuddle when they needed to cry, something that would help them remember, something that could provide comfort when they were feeling alone in the dark.

    I would like to make each of Cindy’s children a special memory quilt. They can include fabric from clothing, scraps from anything, or even just photos and fabric I provide.

    If you can email me… surferboysmom@gmail.com we can discuss the details.

    I will pass on Cindy’s story as well and hopefully there will be others who will be able to help too.

    • What a nice gesture, Elsie! Maybe make something from Cindy’s clothes that her children can hold and snuggle with. Sure hope they like the idea!

  29. You know? Not that it’s all about me….but my husband & I received some negative financial news that will have an impact on our lives and were freaking all afternoon…then…I read this and bawled. Isn’t it so bizarre that now I realize how unimportant our troubles are in comparison to this? I’m so so sorry for your family’s loss…it’s hurtful to see her beautific smile which goes right on up to her eyes in every picture and know that the world’s probably a little lesser place. I’m glad I took the time to read and listen and watch your blog today Donna….thankyou. You are very sweet. xo wendy

  30. Saw the news when it hit the Facebook page. Devastated for her family. Have been praying, and will be following the website to know how/what to pray best. So terribly sorry.

  31. Donna,
    Your loss is in my heart and in my prayers for Cindy’s family. to have the strength to carry on. Bless you for dedicating yourself to creating the new blog for her and in her memory. May it help her family deal with their “separation.”
    With My Warm Regards,
    JP

  32. Sorry about your loss. She was so young and this was sudden. Cancer has an odd way of taking people out of our lives. Sometimes is quick other times is a slow long battle. I have lost 3 people in my life with in a year to cancer. Each I will hold a special place in my heart for them.

    Your Cindy looks like she was a very special person. I”ll say a prayer for her family. HUGS. Thanks so much for sharing her special story with us.

  33. Shirley said:
    As tears run down my face as I watch both video, I just can understand WHY. I know I didn’t know Cindy but we are creatures of God so I feel I did know her. Donna you did a beautiful job. My husband and I will continue to pray for all of you. Within the last few months I have read about two other people that has pasted and left small children. I don’t understand. Please God make me understand!

  34. I am so very sorry for your loss. Words cannot describe what you are all going through. I will keep you all in my prayers.
    Betsy

  35. I am so very sorry for the loss of this beautiful woman. I hope you don’t mind that I’m quoting you as my FB status and I’ll link to your website. Hugs!

  36. Donna, thank you for sharing this heart-wrenching story. We share your heavy heart as our hearts are full of sadness for the loss of such a lovely young mother! Peace to you and God’s grace to her family.

  37. Donna, you are truly a remarkable soul! And I am so very sorry for your loss. What a sad day when something like this happens. Yet you bring light and hope. My thoughts and prayers are with you, Cindy and her family and everyone that she touched in her short stay here. Blessings to all of you.

  38. What a wonderful gift you gave Cindy and her family! Support comes in many different ways and forms, yet all are appreciated and needed. My prayers are with you, Cindy’s family and friends.

  39. Love this blogging community…I’m crying for a family that I don’t even know. Your last sentiment is what comes through, don’t just be sad, use this moment to remember that we shouldn’t take any of this life for granted.
    Don’t sweat the small stuff, hug those that you care about, smile, reach out, make a difference, be kind, the list of good can go on and on and I’m sure that Cindy would approve. R.I.P., blessings and support for her precious family.

  40. Wow, Donna….my heart dropped when I read the email. I thought for sure you were writing with good news. I’m so sorry. My continued prayers are with the family during this very difficult time. I’m certain that this loving family, and all Cindy’s friends, will make sure those beautiful children will know what a awesome woman their mother had been. Thank you for letting us know about this loss. It gives us all the opportunity to touch someone who needs our love.

  41. I sit here reading your story and am so sad. I know this story because 34 years ago I married my husband after his wife died of leukemia in just two weeks. She left behind a 4 year old and a 18 month old. They are now the loves of my life. I cherish them even though I know they will always belong to Diane. She was only 21 when she passed. Cindy was a beautiful young lady and mom she reminds me of Sandra Bullock. I hope can rest in peace knowing her children will be loved and cared for.

  42. Donna, I somehow stumbled upon your site tonight and, not having known anything about this beautiful soul until just a few minutes ago, my heart is so very heavy for those who knew and loved her … especially her husband and children. May God’s peace be with each of you.
    Diane

  43. I just saw this, Donna. My heart is breaking and I am bawling as I type this. I don’t understand the whys or wherefores of this world sometimes. I guess God needed a beautiful angel in His Heaven…but oh-the loss here below- God bless- xo Diana

  44. I am so sorry to hear about Cindy’s passing. I will be keeping all of you in my prayers. We never know how much time we have left and we all have to remember to let the small things go so we can enjoy what’s really important.

  45. Wow! Im dumbfounded! This lost is so saddening and unfair. Being in the medical field as an aide for 15 years, and now a nurse, I have seen many things, but to know such a young beautiful person taken from this world so suddenly……. well I can not come up with the right words to explain how this is making me feel.

    But at the same time, Donna you could put a smile on anyones face and/or in their heart at any given time and I truly love that about you, that is one of the reasons I began following your blog over 2 years ago. You young lady are a gift to this world!

    My thought’s and prayers are with you and your family.

  46. My thoughts and prayers go out to the family that is left behind to figure out their new world. I’m glad you could get past your pain to share the lessons you have learned with us. Nothing in my world seems to be a true problem today and Cyndi is the reason to appreciate life! ~ Maureen

  47. I do not know you, I added you to my facebook likes because we share a passion for JUNK, things that was thrown away and made new.

    I am glad you shared this with us all.

    I would like to share a message for Brad.

    Brad, sometimes there is gates in our life that is so painfull to go through, because we do not want to enter them, this is not the gate that we have chosen. As you go through this gate, do not camp at it …. go on, one step every day. Do not fear to look back and see where the gate still is, there is special memories left there, you are lucky, there is a LOT of pink flowers planted there. The way your wife has touched a lot of us is priceless! As you take a step each day in the new way … I pray that God will supply ALL YOUR NEEDS (EVERYONE OF THEM) according to HIS riches and glory! Good luck …. I will pray as you come to my mind each time! This message is all the way from South Africa! Proud that I love to re-use junk, otherwise I would have missed out on this special lady!

    Regards
    Frieda Steenkamp

  48. Donna, I am so terribly sorry for your loss, and for Cindy’s family. I was actually thinking about this the morning and wondering what the update was. I have known too many people where cancer takes someone so unexpectedly. One thing I have learned through my own difficult losses is that life can change in one second. I truly try to remember this each day and not take any time I have here for granted. Many prayers and good thoughts to her family.

  49. Even though I did not know Cindy and her family I felt like I did. I was so upset when I read about her passing. I am praying for your whole family and especially her husband and children. I was so hoping and praying when I first read about her being sick that she would overcome this and get better. I am so very sorry.

  50. So so sorry for you and your families loss. I was one of many praying for her recovery.
    Balled my eyes out last night when I read your post. I know we all send strength to her young family. This is so heart wrenching and so wrong!
    Words just escape me!

  51. I know I don’t know you, but I had to wipe away the tears as I read this post. So sad a mother won’t be there as her children grow up. I hate cancer. There’s hardly a person it hasn’t touched in some way.
    Best wishes to you and Cindy’s little family.

  52. My heart echos so many of the sentiments here. All of life’s “problems” are really insignificant compared to losing someone you love so completely. I watched both the videos and they left me speechless and in tears. What a heartbreaking loss. Sending prayers that your family will take comfort in the love they have for Cindy and find strength in that love to carry on.

  53. I came over to find a table and found this heart wrenching post. I am so sorry for your loss and for her husband and children. What a tragedy, and no time for anyone to prepare for it (I guess you can never prepare, but at least know that it is coming). This is such a beautiful tribute to a lovely woman. I was so touched by this post. laurie

  54. The friends Facebook, I have a favor to ask … only a few of you do and know who they are … If you know someone who fought and won the cancer or who fought and died, or who is still fighting bravely, I ask you to put this message in status by 1:0 as a sign of respect and remembrance. I hope I have reason about people who will. Copy and paste. Simple as that!!

  55. Oh my. These are such hard times on us all. Nothing seems to make any sense anymore. A few months ago my neighbor at 32 was gone overnight from heart failure, with two children, the youngest at 5 months, and the whole neighborhood reeled for weeks.

    As someone who “died” from near-fatal injuries and later “came back”, just to say, few of us are ever prepared for the inevitable. None of us know when or how our time will come, and we are never truly prepared to lose loved ones or to leave “this world” in horrible ways, as inevitable as it seems to be. I was alone through my recovery years, and still am alone several years later with very poor health, yet it is what it is. Instead of living in fear, we can only hope grace and peace is offered in the dark moments. xox

  56. After posting above, I thought to share something else, in case it helps.

    I know of a devoted family man who was also recently diagnosed with cancer, and this man was deeply connected with his church and community. Everyone prayed for his healing and there was a strong belief that he would have a full recovery. Instead, his health digressed quickly, although he and his wife still remained hopeful he would make a comeback. And then, in his last moments he was given a glimpse of “the other side”, and when he regained consciousness he told his wife how much he loved her and the children, but he didn’t want to come back.

    I too was given a glimpse of the other side, and if I could offer any speck of relief to this sadness, please realize that being here, living in “this world”, is the hard part. There is only peace on the other side. A peace so infinite we have absolutely no idea. I do not understand why I am still here in “this world” as it is so incredibly confusing and painful, and if I had a choice, I would choose to return to that peace.

    Keep heart. xox

  57. My sister died at age 53 of a heart attack and I will never forget the shock and heartbreak. It’s been 12 years and I still miss her every day. So very sorry for this loss.

  58. So very sorry for your family’s loss. LIfe can change on a dime, and we need to “enjoy every sandwich” as Warren Zevon. Cindy’s husband might find Matt Loughlin’s blog and book helpful at some point – Matt lost his wife right after she gave birth to their daughter. Matt started a blog and it turned into a book. May memories ease your sorrows, and time soften the pain.

  59. What a sad update :(

    When I was suddenly widowed over five years ago, I lucked into a website one day called the Young Widows Bulletin Board.
    It was started by women who lost their husbands during 9/11.

    There are sections for newly widowed, 6 months on, one year on, etc.
    It saved my sanity to read about other people in my situation-because no one in my neighborhood had my/my kids’ experience. They have a chat room to discuss things in real time as well.

    As sad as it is to refer someone to that site, I highly recommend them.

    Wishing you all some peace in your heart during this awful tragedy. Namaste.

  60. Oh Donna, I’m so sorry. I don’t know you and I didn’t know Cindy but my heart aches for her family. Thank you for sharing her story though, as hard as it is to read, it’s very inspiring~

  61. Wow – for someone who just stumbled onto your blog a couple of weeks ago for some light reading, this post has had a significant impact on me. I know there are no words that can take away the pain, so I post only to say that, having never known Cindy, she has made a tremendous impact on me. Thank you for sharing her story. Blessings to the family during this difficult time.