Project Description

Shelly Fisher

A special note from our founder

After my second diagnosis with cancer, right when I felt like life pulled the carpet out from underneath me, I hit bottom. But one day about a week later, in my head, I thought, “You have done this before, you can do this again. You are one tough bitch. Get it together!”

The thought jolted me – it is not the kind of thing I would normally think, but it gave me the push I needed. Something about those words seemed to shout to my core and wake something up inside of me. So I made myself a necklace to remind me “You can do this.” Sometimes, I reach for it, and somehow, it helps me. It’s like my own force field, invisible to the outside world, yet protecting me.

Cancer really changes you. It super-sizes the unknown, our mortality, the question mark that hangs over us. If we only “knew” we would be okay. That’s the same question mark for finding someone new, being able to have a child, getting over the emotional pain, or overcoming life’s hurdles. If we knew we would be ok, then we would be able to more easily handle the path put in front of us.

But that’s not life. No one has guarantees.

So much of what we experience as women takes strength, and we sometimes manage by limping through to the other side. We should pause to feel the success of getting through the challenge. Celebrate that we were able to put one foot in front of the other, even if the tank was on empty.

People tell me I appear strong and calm on the outside. Believe me under the surface, there are many moments when my feet are paddling hard like a duck. For me, I find my strength by appearing strong. Fake it till you make it, right?

The “I made it through ______ but now what?” feels just as hard. But while it’s tough, time goes on and life happens. And as it happens somehow we move forward. Sometimes without even knowing how we did it. It just takes time.

But learning you can depend on yourself is a powerful tool. It is a lesson life can never take from us.


What I tell my daughter all of the time-
Life is journey, not a destination. Stop focusing only on big goals in the future for happiness. Life has only one destination and you don’t want to rush there. Look for those small moments. Stop, look up at the trees, the birds, a stranger who smiles at you. Make your daily journey mean something. Do positive things. Huge awards and big events are like fireworks. They come, they light up the sky for one moment and they are gone. Find small joys daily, even on days when life is just plain hard.

Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass. It’s about learning how to dance in the rain. I have that saying on a card behind my desk.

Life is all about Plan B. “We plan, God laughs” is a popular expression. So often it’s all about our Plan B.

If you can take even one small step forward each day. One day you will turn around and realize you climbed a mountain.

Inhale the good shit-exhale the bullshit. Enough said.

Last but not least – “She knew she could”– You can do this! Find your inner Tough Bitch, that inner power, your inner cheerleader. It’s there!

Welcome to the OTB Sisterhood!