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secrets of a stylist: you got this.

I am a very honest (sometimes to a fault) and transparent person. I wear my heart on my sleeve and my poker face doesn't exist (seriously, don't make me do anything illegal, I will fold like a taco if I get caught).

I really struggled if I should share my journey with the world (FB and IG are the world, right?). This is such a personal thing to go through. But then there was this part of me that wanted to share everything, to be able to be open about what I was going through...the good and the bad. To be vulnerable, to ask for help, to ask for your prayers and good vibes. To share my anxiety, my truth, my feeling of being loved and supported, and to somehow make a difference in the "world". To encourage other people to go to the doctor, to be heard, to be seen, and to be their own advocate and take control of their health. And part of me wanted the love and support from not just my immediate family and close friends but from my extended family, my photoshoot family, my friends from grade school and high school and all the amazing people I have met over the years.

I am so glad I shared. The day I posted my last blog post (yoga saved my life), my phone literally blew up (ok, not literally). The love came pouring in. I have read your comments on FB and IG over and over and holy shit...I am blown away. I have cried a bunch feeling all the feels and knowing how much support I have. So many people from my past and present have reached out and I am truly thankful. Reading how you see me, how you love me, how you are WITH me on this journey is HUGE. I got this. WE got this. Thank you.

Flowers from a production company I LOVE working with!

I met with my chemo doc, Dr. E, this week for the first time. She filled me on what to expect with each round, all the side effects (!!!) and answered all my questions. During our conversation she said, "Tina, you don't have cancer. Your surgeon removed it. We are doing chemo as an insurance policy, a just-to-be-safe measure, to make sure there are no tiny cancer cells hiding in there that we can't see." I say those words over and over in my head now..."Tina, you don't have cancer." Best. Sentence. Ever.

I start chemo on St. Paddy's Day (wonder if they'll turn my "cocktail" green?). There's a lot of info to read and learn and many things I need to do prior to my first the chemo videos, pick up meds, eat some tacos, cut my hair off, buy some hats, get a pedi, clean my house, eat some tacos. They recommend that I drink 64oz. of water every day. Is that even physically possible? I definitely need to up my water game! I ordered a water bottle that holds the exact amount I am suppose to drink. I unpacked it and this was on the top of the box: "YOU GOT THIS"...amazing, right? They also included a sticker saying that too! :)

Even my new water bottle is cheering me on!

After reading this on the box, I said out loud, "Yes I do!" and then chuckled at the kismet of everything. How it all is coming together. How the stars have aligned from the beginning. How out of 1 million water bottles on Amazon I could've bought, I chose this one.

I am strong. I am blessed. I am safe. I am loved. I got this. (Are five things too much for a mantra?) That does feel like a bit much, right? It's like going to the grocery store without a list and trying to remember more than three things. I think I'll stick with my original mantra and just know that I am loved and I got this. WE got this.

stylist secret: I am scared of chemo. Dr. E showed me the infusion room the other day and that made me feel a little better knowing where I would be going. But it was sooooo quiet in there and everyone looked pretty sad. I am trying to be positive and I keep telling myself that this is the medicine I need to make sure there are no more cancer cells. I am channeling my friend Kim who just went through 8 rounds of chemo (!!!) and kicked ass (!!!). She said to me, "The chemo nurses are going to love you!" I hope so and I hope everything goes as planned.

stylist tip: When you think of someone, reach out to them. Don't wait. Call, text, send a card...anything. I lost a friend last year and after her passing, I thought about all of the times I wish I would've reached out to her just to tell her I was thinking of her. I'm making a better effort this year to stay in touch with friends and family. This week I bought these beautiful flowers in her memory. A little spot of sunshine.

Lisa LOVED all flowers but especially cute are these?

After my surgery, my cousin Kris reached out to me and we talked on the phone for the FIRST TIME EVER as adults. What a lovely surprise! We should do that more Kris! This past weekend, I FaceTimed with another cousin, his wife and adorable little girl. Normally it's weddings and funerals that I get to catch up with the cousins, so this has been extra special.

Again, I'm so thankful for everyone who has taken the time to reach out and tell me they are thinking of me. I am feeling the love.

What's your favorite way to communicate with family and friends? FB, text, call, Facetime? Do you still send cards in the mail? Oh, how I love a good mail day!

Speaking of kismet....After finishing this blog post, I checked the mail and there was a card from my mom and dad. Thanks Mom!

I think the universe is sending me a sign. Literally.

I got this!

What's your best advice for staying hydrated? Is there a flavored water you love or a good recipe to make water more delicious? Is it really possible to drink that much water in a day? Does bubble water count??

Thanks for reading! Until next time...cheers! xo tina

Stella wishes you a warm and cozy week!

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