Success with Neora Starts with Belief in Yourself

Shared by: http://neorablog.com/brand-partners/success-with-neora-starts-with-belief-in-yourself/

When you talk to Independent Brand Partners about how to be successful at Neora, one theme is consistent: Belief.

Support from your teams comes in a close second, but it all starts with believing in yourself.

Telancia Adams, a Team Director in Las Vegas, knew her sponsor through her grandfather – a relationship that gave her the confidence to break away from the more traditional life path she had been encouraged to follow.

“All my life, I’ve been told ‘Go to school, get good grades in college, get a good job,’” Telancia said. “It takes a lot of courage for people to step outside that box. I started off believing in the company and the products, which then transferred over to me being able to believe in myself. I couldn’t have gotten there without all these amazing women.”

Silver NMD Rhanda Carlile said that, although she got her start in television news and pharmaceutical sales, she’d always wanted to run her own business – where no one could tell her what to say, where to be or what to wear. She said her parents raised her to believe in herself, but that’s not the case for everyone.

“I don’t think I realized how many people struggle in that category because they’ve had somebody – whether it’s a friend or a parent – telling them that they’re not good enough,” Rhanda said. “That they can’t do something that somebody else has already done. There are still so many people who think they can’t get to that next level or they can’t really do anything with this from the get-go. It’s all in their head.”

 Rhanda has started hosting retreats to empower women to run their own businesses in a way that helps other people as well as their families.

“It’s interesting to see the confidence level of so many people – we often see so much more in them than they see in themselves,” Rhanda said. “I like having these retreats to get people to realize their worth and their potential in this business we’ve been gifted.”

Telancia said she is lifted up by weekly accountability calls where her team members share their goals and encourage each other to hit their targets.

“It has truly helped keep me on track because I feel like I’m not just getting on there with my NMD, but also my other team members,” Telancia said. “I don’t want to let anyone down because I didn’t do my part. It has totally helped me be accountable to my business and to myself.”

Telancia also participates in a weekly leadership Zoom with Platinum NMDs Ron Forrester and Leslie Hocker that helped her plug into the system from day one.

“Corporate offers so much support through Neora U and great training materials, but our team also hovered around us and made sure they were also training on a more intimate level,” she said. “Other Brand Partners and leaders get on there every week and everyone’s sharing a different story and giving tips on what they’re doing in their market to help their business grow.”

Both women say they have been lucky to have people in their life and on their teams to help with the more mundane side of the business.

Rhanda’s husband and partner in Neora, Andy, was a former financial planner, so they were able to use each other’s strengths to form a strong team. She said she recommends finding an accountant who understands network marketing and all of the benefits and writeoffs that come with owning your own business. She also wants to make sure that people treat this like what it is – a business.

“The most common mistake that people make is that they have this extra money coming in … and they don’t plan for anything or write off anything and they just haven’t taken it seriously like a business – they’re treating it more like extra income,” she said. “When I first started doing this, I just socked everything back. I had two full-time jobs and I treated it as an extra savings. I met with a financial advisor, I met with an accountant, talked about setting up an LLC and talked about setting up an S corp. God made people very different to do different things … and we all need to get help from each other because we definitely don’t know everything.”

Whether the people on their teams are financial whizzes or not, both women say their Neora family pushes them to keep growing.

Telancia said she was brought to tears when she told a fellow Brand Partner that one of her goals was to travel to more Neora training events, and her friend went a step further by suggesting that Telancia might be the one conducting the training.

“I just sat there for a moment and I was crying. I literally never thought of that,” Telancia said. “I’m so blessed to be surrounded by a group of people who see me further than I see myself.”

Neora™, LLC does not guarantee any level of income for any Brand Partner. The actual income of Neora Brand Partners varies depending on each Brand Partner’s skill, effort and time commitment.

Shared by: http://neorablog.com/brand-partners/success-with-neora-starts-with-belief-in-yourself/

When you talk to Independent Brand Partners about how to be successful at Neora, one theme is consistent: Belief.

Support from your teams comes in a close second, but it all starts with believing in yourself.

Telancia Adams, a Team Director in Las Vegas, knew her sponsor through her grandfather – a relationship that gave her the confidence to break away from the more traditional life path she had been encouraged to follow.

“All my life, I’ve been told ‘Go to school, get good grades in college, get a good job,’” Telancia said. “It takes a lot of courage for people to step outside that box. I started off believing in the company and the products, which then transferred over to me being able to believe in myself. I couldn’t have gotten there without all these amazing women.”

Silver NMD Rhanda Carlile said that, although she got her start in television news and pharmaceutical sales, she’d always wanted to run her own business – where no one could tell her what to say, where to be or what to wear. She said her parents raised her to believe in herself, but that’s not the case for everyone.

“I don’t think I realized how many people struggle in that category because they’ve had somebody – whether it’s a friend or a parent – telling them that they’re not good enough,” Rhanda said. “That they can’t do something that somebody else has already done. There are still so many people who think they can’t get to that next level or they can’t really do anything with this from the get-go. It’s all in their head.”

 Rhanda has started hosting retreats to empower women to run their own businesses in a way that helps other people as well as their families.

“It’s interesting to see the confidence level of so many people – we often see so much more in them than they see in themselves,” Rhanda said. “I like having these retreats to get people to realize their worth and their potential in this business we’ve been gifted.”

Telancia said she is lifted up by weekly accountability calls where her team members share their goals and encourage each other to hit their targets.

“It has truly helped keep me on track because I feel like I’m not just getting on there with my NMD, but also my other team members,” Telancia said. “I don’t want to let anyone down because I didn’t do my part. It has totally helped me be accountable to my business and to myself.”

Telancia also participates in a weekly leadership Zoom with Platinum NMDs Ron Forrester and Leslie Hocker that helped her plug into the system from day one.

“Corporate offers so much support through Neora U and great training materials, but our team also hovered around us and made sure they were also training on a more intimate level,” she said. “Other Brand Partners and leaders get on there every week and everyone’s sharing a different story and giving tips on what they’re doing in their market to help their business grow.”

Both women say they have been lucky to have people in their life and on their teams to help with the more mundane side of the business.

Rhanda’s husband and partner in Neora, Andy, was a former financial planner, so they were able to use each other’s strengths to form a strong team. She said she recommends finding an accountant who understands network marketing and all of the benefits and writeoffs that come with owning your own business. She also wants to make sure that people treat this like what it is – a business.

“The most common mistake that people make is that they have this extra money coming in … and they don’t plan for anything or write off anything and they just haven’t taken it seriously like a business – they’re treating it more like extra income,” she said. “When I first started doing this, I just socked everything back. I had two full-time jobs and I treated it as an extra savings. I met with a financial advisor, I met with an accountant, talked about setting up an LLC and talked about setting up an S corp. God made people very different to do different things … and we all need to get help from each other because we definitely don’t know everything.”

Whether the people on their teams are financial whizzes or not, both women say their Neora family pushes them to keep growing.

Telancia said she was brought to tears when she told a fellow Brand Partner that one of her goals was to travel to more Neora training events, and her friend went a step further by suggesting that Telancia might be the one conducting the training.

“I just sat there for a moment and I was crying. I literally never thought of that,” Telancia said. “I’m so blessed to be surrounded by a group of people who see me further than I see myself.”

Neora™, LLC does not guarantee any level of income for any Brand Partner. The actual income of Neora Brand Partners varies depending on each Brand Partner’s skill, effort and time commitment.

The Story of a Survivor

Shared by: http://neorablog.com/neora-people/the-story-of-a-survivor/

Valerie Schmitt, Neora Sales Training Senior Manager, offers inspiration, information and hope as she shares the personal story of her journey as a breast cancer survivor.

Normal Life

I was just going on with everyday life – enjoying starting a new job and excited for my son to start daycare. Little man was 10 months old when I started my position at Neora, so I figured starting the job would be a good time to stop breastfeeding.

Weaning him off was painful, and I kept feeling a pain in my left breast in particular, but I assumed it was a clogged duct or my milk drying up. After my milk had dried up a week or so later, I realized the pain was radiating from a large lump in my left breast. I had never noticed it before, but between pregnancy and breast feeding, it was hard to tell what was normal with my body and what wasn’t. I made an appointment with my OB to get it checked out.

During that first visit, my doctor figured it was probably a clogged milk duct. I had zero history of breast cancer in my family – zero history of cancer at all – and was only 34. Why would there be any reason to assume otherwise? She sent me to a breast specialist for an ultrasound to be certain.

A week or so later, I found myself in the breast specialist’s office getting an ultrasound done. My husband was there holding my hand. The doctor looked at the image and then called another doctor into the room. A few minutes later they told me I needed to go across the hall to have a mammogram done. I didn’t know much, but I knew that when doctors move that fast or ask for a mammogram on someone under 40, it can’t be good.

I went across the hall to get my mammogram and the tech shook her head and told me I might need to prepare myself. I went back across the hall for results and they told me I would need a biopsy later that week.

The News

On June 15th, I went back to the breast specialist to get the results from the biopsy. It was breast cancer. But not the hormone positive breast cancer that even the doctors had assumed (due to my pregnancy) but a breast cancer called triple negative.

Triple negative cancer does not respond to hormone therapy and is seen as an aggressive cancer with higher chances of relapse. The doctor ordered DNA testing to see if I carried a genetic risk for it, since I was so young with no family history of cancer, and he told us that due to the aggressive form of cancer I had, and the size of my tumor, we needed to move fast to make sure it hadn’t spread. It was best to do chemotherapy first to stop the cancer from spreading and then follow chemo with surgery.

The next week and a half were filled with appointments, ultrasounds, an MRI, an EKG on my heart and a surgery to have my port placed. I didn’t have time to consider our future and the possibility of having more children. I was scared and wanted the cancer gone, and all the doctors told me that due to the aggressive form of my cancer, I needed to act fast.

Before the end of the month and before my son’s first birthday, I did my first round of eight chemotherapy treatments. I was told I would lose my hair and be sick, and I’d likely be unable to be around my son a lot, due to germs. I remember feeling sad and angry but, most of all, scared. I was going to fight for my life and do everything I could to get this disease out of me.

Another cancer warrior gave me the best advice that week: “Your job now is to do everything possible to survive and be healthy to watch your son grow up. You do everything you have to do to make that happen.” So, I focused forward, and I did.

Treatment

I did eight rounds of chemotherapy from late June until mid-October. I lost my hair. I was constantly nauseous. Food didn’t taste the same. The side effects to my body were horrible, and it was the hardest time of my life emotionally.

But I was surrounded by love and support. A cousin came to live with us to care for my son, because he couldn’t be in daycare (due to the germs). A friend or family member came with me every other week to my chemo infusions. They brought me games and coloring books, read me stories and made me laugh.

People from every stage of my life sent food. I received care packages from people I hadn’t spoken to in years – one even coming from a former coworker currently living in Ireland. And on the off weeks, I put on a badass, fun wig and I went to work. I acted like things were normal. And as crazy as that sounds, I think it helped – me having that consistency. It was almost like living two separate lives, but it worked for me.

Chemotherapy was showing signs of working and shrinking the tumor. The physical battle was hard. After round 3 I begged my doctors to stop, but they told me I had to soldier on, so I did.

What got me through those dark days of wanting to throw in the towel, or the moments when I felt lost without my hair or was having a hot flash, was my awesome support system. I called my friends and vented or cried or laughed. I did meditation. I hugged my son. I went to therapy. I cuddled my puppies.

There is an image that I looked at before every round of chemo: “Fate whispers to the warrior, ‘You cannot withstand the storm.’ And the warrior whispers back, ‘I am the storm.’ ” I just kept telling myself to be the storm.

The Decision

Near the end of my chemotherapy, I was asked to decide between a lumpectomy (where they just remove what is left of the tumor and some area around it) or a mastectomy (where they take your breast(s)). If I did a lumpectomy, the doctors recommended radiation due to my cancer being triple negative. If I did a mastectomy, the need for radiation would depend on the results of my lymph node biopsy to see if cancer had spread to my lymph nodes.

I gave this a lot of thought. I met with a radiologist. We discussed the risks of radiation and how it could possibly affect my heart, lungs and rib cage. Ultimately the decision came down to my peace of mind. I just kept thinking about my goal – to live as long as possible to watch my son grow up. And I decided I was willing to do whatever drastic means necessary to lessen my risk of reoccurrence. So, I chose the double mastectomy.

The Big Surgery

I had my double mastectomy in November of 2017 the week prior to Thanksgiving. Thankfully family came down to help me recover and care for my little guy. Friends came through and brought all the dishes necessary for us to have a Thanksgiving dinner without me lifting a finger.

The day before Thanksgiving I received a phone call with the best news I had ever received: “100% complete pathological response.” The cancer was gone. Results from the biopsy of my breast tissue and lymph nodes from the mastectomy had only shown scar tissue. Chemo had killed ALL the cancer in my body.

So, as for treatment, I was done. No radiation and no long-term pills needed. Now I just had to do reconstruction and then begin the process of rebuilding my “normal” life. I was elated. I took the time over the holidays to spend time with family and friends and soak in all the joy that life had to offer. I had beaten it.

Then in February I did my first BIG reconstruction – something called a DIEP Flap. To make a complicated surgery sound simple, they gave me a tummy tuck and used that fat to recreate my breasts. Recovery was long and painful. I had drains and could barely move my abdomen to straighten my body or stand up to walk. I couldn’t lift my son for 8 weeks.

Thankfully my cousin agreed to move back in with us during that time to be my caretaker. Again, family and friends stepped in to send food and help in any way they could. I got through it.

After my eight-week recovery and return to work, I decided to close the book on what cancer had taken from me. I needed to know if I would ever be able to have a child again. We went to my OB, who sent me to a fertility specialist. The fertility doctor explained that they would do bloodwork to “guestimate” the amount of eggs I had left and the viability that they would be good (which would be unlikely due to the chemo).

A few weeks later, the results came in – my AMH level (which should have been between a 1 and 3) was .04 – too low to do fertility treatment with the tiniest chance of me ever having a baby naturally again. I was devastated. It felt like another hit to my womanhood and just another thing on the long list of what cancer had taken from me. I reached out to my plastic surgeon and told him that we should move forward with the final reconstruction to fix issues from my previous surgery. I wanted this chapter of my life closed for good.

The Miracle After the Storm

I had my last reconstruction surgery in June of 2018. After the surgery I felt sick constantly, I was weak and I just couldn’t get back to my normal self. I went to see all my doctors and they were at a loss as to what was causing it. Then, by suggestion of my friends, I took a pregnancy test. By some insane miracle, I was pregnant.

I didn’t believe the results. I had only had one period since stopping chemo, which is common since chemo has been known to send women into menopause. I had been told there was no way I could get pregnant. I had declined the pregnancy test before my final surgery!

I obviously assumed the worst – that even if I had been pregnant prior to surgery, that the surgery or meds that I had taken after had obviously done something to the baby. I contacted my OB and told them I needed an ultrasound, but I assumed I was having, or had already had, a miscarriage.

I went into the doctor’s appointment scared, sad and prepared to hear the worst. The ultrasound started, and there on the screen was a healthy baby – moving and practically waving at us. I seriously screamed. The doctor told me I was 10½ weeks pregnant.

My OB called her staff in and everyone stood there in shock. No one had expected this news that day. I was crying, the friend who came with me to the appointment was crying, my doctor was crying … it was truly a miracle. A miracle that I had gotten pregnant in the first place, and a miracle that the pregnancy had not been affected by my recent surgery.

That same day they told me they would send out bloodwork to determine the gender of my baby. Imagine the shock of finding out that not only are you pregnant after hearing that the pregnancy door was closed, but you’re far enough along to know the gender! It was mind-blowing.

The next six months of pregnancy were spent seeing various doctors to confirm that the baby and I were completely healthy (which we were) and getting to experience each doctor’s reaction as they were either baffled or stunned to tears by my story. My team of doctors started referring to me as a “medical unicorn.” It was rare and shocking that I had such an aggressive cancer that came out of nowhere with no history or reason in the first place, but equally rare and shocking that my year and a half-long cancer journey was ending with a miracle baby.

Our miracle baby, Adelaide Hope, was born in January.

Looking Forward

There are so many things that my journey has taught me. I don’t think I can put into words the emotional roller coaster that you go through. Having to stare death in the face, wondering if you will be alive to watch your child grow up, being asked to prepare your will … it was more than I could have fathomed going through at the ripe old age of 34.

Losing your hair and your breasts can make you feel like you are no longer a woman – like you will never be beautiful again. I remember one time being at the pharmacy to pick up my meds and the clerk called me “sir.” I cried for hours. But I can tell you the strength you gain from those dark moments – the ability to no longer define yourself by something so trivial as your hair – is a strength you’ll carry through life.

I see beauty in WHO people are now. In how they treat others and how they show up when things are hard versus just taking things at face value. The journey forces you to put things into perspective. To learn to prioritize your life and yourself and no longer get hung up on the trivial things that used to keep you up at night. There is a reason they call us warriors – because the battle is so much bigger than just a disease and takes so much more than just going through treatments. It takes an emotional strength and growth that can’t be put into words.

Educate Yourself

This is my story, but understand that cancer is something that will likely affect you or a loved one in your lifetime. Learn what breast cancer looks like. Media awareness campaigns are just that – to make you aware – but it’s up to you to dig deeper and learn the details.

Perform regular self-exams and, if you are over 40, get a mammogram annually. Breast cancer is a serious disease and survivors go through the same treatment (and sometimes more treatment) than other cancers. Metastatic breast cancer, when a breast cancer has spread beyond the breast and nearby lymph nodes into other organs in the body, has no cure. Thirty percent of women who have had early stage breast cancer will eventually develop metastatic breast cancer. Patients can and do have their breast cancer metastasize 30 years or more after treatment. Fewer than one-in-four women diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer live beyond five years.

You can learn more from the National Breast Cancer Foundation, Inc. at https://www.nationalbreastcancer.org.

How You Can Help

If you have the means to donate to one of the breast cancer charities, please do. Look for organizations that support research to find a cure for metastatic breast cancer. Not every foundation is the same, and some devote more of their funds to research than others. You can see the ratings of thousands of registered charities at Charity Navigator, an independent nonprofit organization.

Find ways to help someone going through treatment – even if it’s something as simple as helping with the housecleaning, sending food or sitting by their side and making them laugh. Educate yourself on how to be compassionate through this process.

And to my fellow warriors out there – you are the storm. Keep fighting and being the badasses that I know you are.

VALERIE’S BREAST CANCER RESOURCES

Breast Cancer Research Foundation: https://www.bcrf.org/

National Breast Cancer Foundation: https://www.nationalbreastcancer.org/#

METAvivor MBC research and support: https://www.metavivor.org/

You may also reach out to Valerie directly on Facebook or at vschmitt@neora.com

Shared by: http://neorablog.com/neora-people/the-story-of-a-survivor/

Valerie Schmitt, Neora Sales Training Senior Manager, offers inspiration, information and hope as she shares the personal story of her journey as a breast cancer survivor.

Normal Life

I was just going on with everyday life – enjoying starting a new job and excited for my son to start daycare. Little man was 10 months old when I started my position at Neora, so I figured starting the job would be a good time to stop breastfeeding.

Weaning him off was painful, and I kept feeling a pain in my left breast in particular, but I assumed it was a clogged duct or my milk drying up. After my milk had dried up a week or so later, I realized the pain was radiating from a large lump in my left breast. I had never noticed it before, but between pregnancy and breast feeding, it was hard to tell what was normal with my body and what wasn’t. I made an appointment with my OB to get it checked out.

During that first visit, my doctor figured it was probably a clogged milk duct. I had zero history of breast cancer in my family – zero history of cancer at all – and was only 34. Why would there be any reason to assume otherwise? She sent me to a breast specialist for an ultrasound to be certain.

A week or so later, I found myself in the breast specialist’s office getting an ultrasound done. My husband was there holding my hand. The doctor looked at the image and then called another doctor into the room. A few minutes later they told me I needed to go across the hall to have a mammogram done. I didn’t know much, but I knew that when doctors move that fast or ask for a mammogram on someone under 40, it can’t be good.

I went across the hall to get my mammogram and the tech shook her head and told me I might need to prepare myself. I went back across the hall for results and they told me I would need a biopsy later that week.

The News

On June 15th, I went back to the breast specialist to get the results from the biopsy. It was breast cancer. But not the hormone positive breast cancer that even the doctors had assumed (due to my pregnancy) but a breast cancer called triple negative.

Triple negative cancer does not respond to hormone therapy and is seen as an aggressive cancer with higher chances of relapse. The doctor ordered DNA testing to see if I carried a genetic risk for it, since I was so young with no family history of cancer, and he told us that due to the aggressive form of cancer I had, and the size of my tumor, we needed to move fast to make sure it hadn’t spread. It was best to do chemotherapy first to stop the cancer from spreading and then follow chemo with surgery.

The next week and a half were filled with appointments, ultrasounds, an MRI, an EKG on my heart and a surgery to have my port placed. I didn’t have time to consider our future and the possibility of having more children. I was scared and wanted the cancer gone, and all the doctors told me that due to the aggressive form of my cancer, I needed to act fast.

Before the end of the month and before my son’s first birthday, I did my first round of eight chemotherapy treatments. I was told I would lose my hair and be sick, and I’d likely be unable to be around my son a lot, due to germs. I remember feeling sad and angry but, most of all, scared. I was going to fight for my life and do everything I could to get this disease out of me.

Another cancer warrior gave me the best advice that week: “Your job now is to do everything possible to survive and be healthy to watch your son grow up. You do everything you have to do to make that happen.” So, I focused forward, and I did.

Treatment

I did eight rounds of chemotherapy from late June until mid-October. I lost my hair. I was constantly nauseous. Food didn’t taste the same. The side effects to my body were horrible, and it was the hardest time of my life emotionally.

But I was surrounded by love and support. A cousin came to live with us to care for my son, because he couldn’t be in daycare (due to the germs). A friend or family member came with me every other week to my chemo infusions. They brought me games and coloring books, read me stories and made me laugh.

People from every stage of my life sent food. I received care packages from people I hadn’t spoken to in years – one even coming from a former coworker currently living in Ireland. And on the off weeks, I put on a badass, fun wig and I went to work. I acted like things were normal. And as crazy as that sounds, I think it helped – me having that consistency. It was almost like living two separate lives, but it worked for me.

Chemotherapy was showing signs of working and shrinking the tumor. The physical battle was hard. After round 3 I begged my doctors to stop, but they told me I had to soldier on, so I did.

What got me through those dark days of wanting to throw in the towel, or the moments when I felt lost without my hair or was having a hot flash, was my awesome support system. I called my friends and vented or cried or laughed. I did meditation. I hugged my son. I went to therapy. I cuddled my puppies.

There is an image that I looked at before every round of chemo: “Fate whispers to the warrior, ‘You cannot withstand the storm.’ And the warrior whispers back, ‘I am the storm.’ ” I just kept telling myself to be the storm.

The Decision

Near the end of my chemotherapy, I was asked to decide between a lumpectomy (where they just remove what is left of the tumor and some area around it) or a mastectomy (where they take your breast(s)). If I did a lumpectomy, the doctors recommended radiation due to my cancer being triple negative. If I did a mastectomy, the need for radiation would depend on the results of my lymph node biopsy to see if cancer had spread to my lymph nodes.

I gave this a lot of thought. I met with a radiologist. We discussed the risks of radiation and how it could possibly affect my heart, lungs and rib cage. Ultimately the decision came down to my peace of mind. I just kept thinking about my goal – to live as long as possible to watch my son grow up. And I decided I was willing to do whatever drastic means necessary to lessen my risk of reoccurrence. So, I chose the double mastectomy.

The Big Surgery

I had my double mastectomy in November of 2017 the week prior to Thanksgiving. Thankfully family came down to help me recover and care for my little guy. Friends came through and brought all the dishes necessary for us to have a Thanksgiving dinner without me lifting a finger.

The day before Thanksgiving I received a phone call with the best news I had ever received: “100% complete pathological response.” The cancer was gone. Results from the biopsy of my breast tissue and lymph nodes from the mastectomy had only shown scar tissue. Chemo had killed ALL the cancer in my body.

So, as for treatment, I was done. No radiation and no long-term pills needed. Now I just had to do reconstruction and then begin the process of rebuilding my “normal” life. I was elated. I took the time over the holidays to spend time with family and friends and soak in all the joy that life had to offer. I had beaten it.

Then in February I did my first BIG reconstruction – something called a DIEP Flap. To make a complicated surgery sound simple, they gave me a tummy tuck and used that fat to recreate my breasts. Recovery was long and painful. I had drains and could barely move my abdomen to straighten my body or stand up to walk. I couldn’t lift my son for 8 weeks.

Thankfully my cousin agreed to move back in with us during that time to be my caretaker. Again, family and friends stepped in to send food and help in any way they could. I got through it.

After my eight-week recovery and return to work, I decided to close the book on what cancer had taken from me. I needed to know if I would ever be able to have a child again. We went to my OB, who sent me to a fertility specialist. The fertility doctor explained that they would do bloodwork to “guestimate” the amount of eggs I had left and the viability that they would be good (which would be unlikely due to the chemo).

A few weeks later, the results came in – my AMH level (which should have been between a 1 and 3) was .04 – too low to do fertility treatment with the tiniest chance of me ever having a baby naturally again. I was devastated. It felt like another hit to my womanhood and just another thing on the long list of what cancer had taken from me. I reached out to my plastic surgeon and told him that we should move forward with the final reconstruction to fix issues from my previous surgery. I wanted this chapter of my life closed for good.

The Miracle After the Storm

I had my last reconstruction surgery in June of 2018. After the surgery I felt sick constantly, I was weak and I just couldn’t get back to my normal self. I went to see all my doctors and they were at a loss as to what was causing it. Then, by suggestion of my friends, I took a pregnancy test. By some insane miracle, I was pregnant.

I didn’t believe the results. I had only had one period since stopping chemo, which is common since chemo has been known to send women into menopause. I had been told there was no way I could get pregnant. I had declined the pregnancy test before my final surgery!

I obviously assumed the worst – that even if I had been pregnant prior to surgery, that the surgery or meds that I had taken after had obviously done something to the baby. I contacted my OB and told them I needed an ultrasound, but I assumed I was having, or had already had, a miscarriage.

I went into the doctor’s appointment scared, sad and prepared to hear the worst. The ultrasound started, and there on the screen was a healthy baby – moving and practically waving at us. I seriously screamed. The doctor told me I was 10½ weeks pregnant.

My OB called her staff in and everyone stood there in shock. No one had expected this news that day. I was crying, the friend who came with me to the appointment was crying, my doctor was crying … it was truly a miracle. A miracle that I had gotten pregnant in the first place, and a miracle that the pregnancy had not been affected by my recent surgery.

That same day they told me they would send out bloodwork to determine the gender of my baby. Imagine the shock of finding out that not only are you pregnant after hearing that the pregnancy door was closed, but you’re far enough along to know the gender! It was mind-blowing.

The next six months of pregnancy were spent seeing various doctors to confirm that the baby and I were completely healthy (which we were) and getting to experience each doctor’s reaction as they were either baffled or stunned to tears by my story. My team of doctors started referring to me as a “medical unicorn.” It was rare and shocking that I had such an aggressive cancer that came out of nowhere with no history or reason in the first place, but equally rare and shocking that my year and a half-long cancer journey was ending with a miracle baby.

Our miracle baby, Adelaide Hope, was born in January.

Looking Forward

There are so many things that my journey has taught me. I don’t think I can put into words the emotional roller coaster that you go through. Having to stare death in the face, wondering if you will be alive to watch your child grow up, being asked to prepare your will … it was more than I could have fathomed going through at the ripe old age of 34.

Losing your hair and your breasts can make you feel like you are no longer a woman – like you will never be beautiful again. I remember one time being at the pharmacy to pick up my meds and the clerk called me “sir.” I cried for hours. But I can tell you the strength you gain from those dark moments – the ability to no longer define yourself by something so trivial as your hair – is a strength you’ll carry through life.

I see beauty in WHO people are now. In how they treat others and how they show up when things are hard versus just taking things at face value. The journey forces you to put things into perspective. To learn to prioritize your life and yourself and no longer get hung up on the trivial things that used to keep you up at night. There is a reason they call us warriors – because the battle is so much bigger than just a disease and takes so much more than just going through treatments. It takes an emotional strength and growth that can’t be put into words.

Educate Yourself

This is my story, but understand that cancer is something that will likely affect you or a loved one in your lifetime. Learn what breast cancer looks like. Media awareness campaigns are just that – to make you aware – but it’s up to you to dig deeper and learn the details.

Perform regular self-exams and, if you are over 40, get a mammogram annually. Breast cancer is a serious disease and survivors go through the same treatment (and sometimes more treatment) than other cancers. Metastatic breast cancer, when a breast cancer has spread beyond the breast and nearby lymph nodes into other organs in the body, has no cure. Thirty percent of women who have had early stage breast cancer will eventually develop metastatic breast cancer. Patients can and do have their breast cancer metastasize 30 years or more after treatment. Fewer than one-in-four women diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer live beyond five years.

You can learn more from the National Breast Cancer Foundation, Inc. at https://www.nationalbreastcancer.org.

How You Can Help

If you have the means to donate to one of the breast cancer charities, please do. Look for organizations that support research to find a cure for metastatic breast cancer. Not every foundation is the same, and some devote more of their funds to research than others. You can see the ratings of thousands of registered charities at Charity Navigator, an independent nonprofit organization.

Find ways to help someone going through treatment – even if it’s something as simple as helping with the housecleaning, sending food or sitting by their side and making them laugh. Educate yourself on how to be compassionate through this process.

And to my fellow warriors out there – you are the storm. Keep fighting and being the badasses that I know you are.

VALERIE’S BREAST CANCER RESOURCES

Breast Cancer Research Foundation: https://www.bcrf.org/

National Breast Cancer Foundation: https://www.nationalbreastcancer.org/#

METAvivor MBC research and support: https://www.metavivor.org/

You may also reach out to Valerie directly on Facebook or at vschmitt@neora.com

Turning Skin Sins Into Wins

Shared by: http://neorablog.com/neora-product/turning-skin-sins-into-wins/

Ditch those damaging skincare habits in favor of a healthier, more youthful-looking complexion

Have you committed any of the 7 daily sins of skincare?

There are lots of little things we do on a daily basis that are bad for our skin. And those unhealthy habits really add up over time, leading to long-term damage and premature aging. At Neora we understand the importance of a regimen using products designed to help your skin look its best. That’s why we’ve identified seven of the most common skincare “sins” — plus seven simple ways to turn those sins into wins.

Check out the list below and identify areas where you could change your skincare habits for the better. Then discover how you can get back on the fast track toward a healthier, more youthful-looking you.

SIN — Sleeping in Your Makeup

We get it. The last thing you want to do after a long day (or night out) is take off your makeup. Besides, how much harm can it cause anyway? Actually, quite a bit. Makeup left on while you sleep can clog your pores, cause annoying breakouts and allow dirt and urban stressors to accumulate.

WIN — Age IQ® Double-Cleansing Face Wash

Our Age IQ Face Wash is a makeup remover and cleanser in one, providing a simple and effective way to get a soothing, deep-down clean. Just two to four pumps of the oil-to-foam formula is all it takes to melt away impurities and makeup and set the stage for our transformative Age IQ® Night Cream and all of its beneficial ingredients.

SIN — Using an Inferior (or no) Night Cream

Now that you’re fresh-faced and ready for bed, don’t forget the next step. The most important time to take care of your skin is at night, while your body is in its rest-and-repair cycle. You need a night cream designed to help rejuvenate your complexion – and not just wipe away the minute your head hits the pillow.

WIN — Age IQ® Night Cream

Our advanced Age IQ Night Cream is designed to help revitalize and regulate your skin, so you wake to a younger, healthier-looking reflection. It addresses multiple signs of aging in a single step, helps remove skin-drying urban stressors and offers visible results that continue to improve over time. The Night Cream’s masklike consistency also helps seal in the natural and proprietary ingredients while providing a barrier that guards against facial lines caused by sheets and pillowcases.

SIN — Not Caring for Your Skin During the Day

Time to wake up! Your skincare shouldn’t just fight lines and wrinkles while you sleep. You need a moisturizing day cream that, combined with your night cream, helps you combat the signs of aging around the clock.

WIN — Age IQ® Day Cream

Our sheer Age IQ Day Cream includes the patented SIG-1273® ingredient and proprietary SAL-14™ blend to fight the signs of aging, as well as their underlying causes. It’s a great moisturizer, too, so your skin will feel refreshed sunup to sundown.

SIN — Rubbing Your Eyes

Rubbing tired eyes may feel oh-so-good at the time, but you could be causing dark circles and sagging skin (not to mention damaging your precious peepers). That’s because the skin under your eyes is thinner and more sensitive than on the rest of your face, so it’s easily damaged.

WIN — Eye-V® Moisture Boost Hydrogel Patches

While you work to put an end to your eye-rubbing habit, treat yourself to our soothing Eye-V Patches. These advanced patches deliver targeted, intense hydration to the under-eye area to combat the appearance of puffy, stressed or fatigued eyes. The unique ThermoReact® delivery system uses your skin’s natural temperature to release the patented ingredients and provide a quick pick-me-up.

SIN — Treating Acne with Multiple Products

If you’re using multiple products to treat your acne, or using products that dry out your skin, you could be doing it wrong. Recent advancements in acne treatment have made it possible to get great results in a single step.

WIN — Complexion Clearing Salicylic Acid Acne Treatment Pads

Acne Treatment Pads from Neora combine five blemish-fighting steps into one to exfoliate and clear up blackheads and whiteheads, reduce excess oil, soothe and calm irritated skin, prevent dryness and even skin tone. The salicylic acid penetrates clogged pores, while our proprietary SIG-1459™ ingredient helps calm and soothe the skin.

SIN — Not Using a Daily Sunscreen

Sunscreen isn’t just for sunny, summer days or trips to the beach. An SPF of at least 30 should be worn every day of the year, because the sun’s UVA and UVB rays can penetrate clouds (and car, home and office windows) to cause premature aging in any weather. Plus, those digital devices you hold up to your face emit harmful blue light, too.

WIN — Invisi-Bloc™ Sunscreen Gel, Broad Spectrum SPF 40

Our Invisi-Bloc™ Sunscreen Gel not only helps shield you from the sun’s rays and harmful blue light from digital devices, but the broad-spectrum SPF is clear, non-greasy and ultralightweight, so you won’t even realize that you’re wearing it.

SIN — Ignoring and/or Hiding Your Body’s Problem Areas

Are your favorite swimsuits, shorts and sleeveless dresses buried in the back of your closet or dresser drawer? If so, you need a product that addresses all of those areas you’ve been reluctantly hiding, so you don’t have to dread another summer beach season or holiday party circuit.

WIN — Firm Body Contour Cream

Our Firm Body Contour Cream helps tighten and tone for a sleeker, more youthful-looking body. Firm also works to improve the appearance of cellulite and dimpled skin while leaving your skin feeling soft and hydrated. It’s perfect for your upper arms, thighs, your stomach and love handles.

Whatever your skincare sin, Neora can help. We combine a winning combination of regimen essentials with innovative boosters that target specific areas of concern, so you always have everything you need to enjoy smoother and healthier-looking skin. Visit neora.com/shop to see our full lineup of age-fighting products.

Shared by: http://neorablog.com/neora-product/turning-skin-sins-into-wins/

Ditch those damaging skincare habits in favor of a healthier, more youthful-looking complexion

Have you committed any of the 7 daily sins of skincare?

There are lots of little things we do on a daily basis that are bad for our skin. And those unhealthy habits really add up over time, leading to long-term damage and premature aging. At Neora we understand the importance of a regimen using products designed to help your skin look its best. That’s why we’ve identified seven of the most common skincare “sins” — plus seven simple ways to turn those sins into wins.

Check out the list below and identify areas where you could change your skincare habits for the better. Then discover how you can get back on the fast track toward a healthier, more youthful-looking you.

SIN — Sleeping in Your Makeup

We get it. The last thing you want to do after a long day (or night out) is take off your makeup. Besides, how much harm can it cause anyway? Actually, quite a bit. Makeup left on while you sleep can clog your pores, cause annoying breakouts and allow dirt and urban stressors to accumulate.

WIN — Age IQ® Double-Cleansing Face Wash

Our Age IQ Face Wash is a makeup remover and cleanser in one, providing a simple and effective way to get a soothing, deep-down clean. Just two to four pumps of the oil-to-foam formula is all it takes to melt away impurities and makeup and set the stage for our transformative Age IQ® Night Cream and all of its beneficial ingredients.

SIN — Using an Inferior (or no) Night Cream

Now that you’re fresh-faced and ready for bed, don’t forget the next step. The most important time to take care of your skin is at night, while your body is in its rest-and-repair cycle. You need a night cream designed to help rejuvenate your complexion – and not just wipe away the minute your head hits the pillow.

WIN — Age IQ® Night Cream

Our advanced Age IQ Night Cream is designed to help revitalize and regulate your skin, so you wake to a younger, healthier-looking reflection. It addresses multiple signs of aging in a single step, helps remove skin-drying urban stressors and offers visible results that continue to improve over time. The Night Cream’s masklike consistency also helps seal in the natural and proprietary ingredients while providing a barrier that guards against facial lines caused by sheets and pillowcases.

SIN — Not Caring for Your Skin During the Day

Time to wake up! Your skincare shouldn’t just fight lines and wrinkles while you sleep. You need a moisturizing day cream that, combined with your night cream, helps you combat the signs of aging around the clock.

WIN — Age IQ® Day Cream

Our sheer Age IQ Day Cream includes the patented SIG-1273® ingredient and proprietary SAL-14™ blend to fight the signs of aging, as well as their underlying causes. It’s a great moisturizer, too, so your skin will feel refreshed sunup to sundown.

SIN — Rubbing Your Eyes

Rubbing tired eyes may feel oh-so-good at the time, but you could be causing dark circles and sagging skin (not to mention damaging your precious peepers). That’s because the skin under your eyes is thinner and more sensitive than on the rest of your face, so it’s easily damaged.

WIN — Eye-V® Moisture Boost Hydrogel Patches

While you work to put an end to your eye-rubbing habit, treat yourself to our soothing Eye-V Patches. These advanced patches deliver targeted, intense hydration to the under-eye area to combat the appearance of puffy, stressed or fatigued eyes. The unique ThermoReact® delivery system uses your skin’s natural temperature to release the patented ingredients and provide a quick pick-me-up.

SIN — Treating Acne with Multiple Products

If you’re using multiple products to treat your acne, or using products that dry out your skin, you could be doing it wrong. Recent advancements in acne treatment have made it possible to get great results in a single step.

WIN — Complexion Clearing Salicylic Acid Acne Treatment Pads

Acne Treatment Pads from Neora combine five blemish-fighting steps into one to exfoliate and clear up blackheads and whiteheads, reduce excess oil, soothe and calm irritated skin, prevent dryness and even skin tone. The salicylic acid penetrates clogged pores, while our proprietary SIG-1459™ ingredient helps calm and soothe the skin.

SIN — Not Using a Daily Sunscreen

Sunscreen isn’t just for sunny, summer days or trips to the beach. An SPF of at least 30 should be worn every day of the year, because the sun’s UVA and UVB rays can penetrate clouds (and car, home and office windows) to cause premature aging in any weather. Plus, those digital devices you hold up to your face emit harmful blue light, too.

WIN — Invisi-Bloc™ Sunscreen Gel, Broad Spectrum SPF 40

Our Invisi-Bloc™ Sunscreen Gel not only helps shield you from the sun’s rays and harmful blue light from digital devices, but the broad-spectrum SPF is clear, non-greasy and ultralightweight, so you won’t even realize that you’re wearing it.

SIN — Ignoring and/or Hiding Your Body’s Problem Areas

Are your favorite swimsuits, shorts and sleeveless dresses buried in the back of your closet or dresser drawer? If so, you need a product that addresses all of those areas you’ve been reluctantly hiding, so you don’t have to dread another summer beach season or holiday party circuit.

WIN — Firm Body Contour Cream

Our Firm Body Contour Cream helps tighten and tone for a sleeker, more youthful-looking body. Firm also works to improve the appearance of cellulite and dimpled skin while leaving your skin feeling soft and hydrated. It’s perfect for your upper arms, thighs, your stomach and love handles.

Whatever your skincare sin, Neora can help. We combine a winning combination of regimen essentials with innovative boosters that target specific areas of concern, so you always have everything you need to enjoy smoother and healthier-looking skin. Visit neora.com/shop to see our full lineup of age-fighting products.

How Our Ingredients Set Neora Apart

Shared by: http://neorablog.com/neora-product/ingredient-integrity/

You Deserve Better Ingredients in Meaningful Amounts

Over the past eight years, Neora has built its business and reputation on our exclusive, premium skincare and wellness line. We carefully curate our custom, proprietary formulas to bring you exceptionally effective, state-of-the-art products that you can find only at Neora. We understand the secret to our recipe for success is ultimately found in the power of packing our products with significant amounts of active ingredients that deliver the Real Results our customers expect and love.

Starting the Process

At Neora we don’t follow trends or produce copycat products, we conduct rigorous research to identify health, vitality and anti-aging concerns people have that aren’t being addressed well by the market. Then, we work tirelessly to create unique solutions to those problems.

Seeking the Absolute Best of Science and Nature

When we begin the process of creating a product, we work with universities, labs and top scientific minds in the field to seek out new discoveries that will make our formulas as efficacious as possible. We constantly search the globe for new breakthroughs from nature. Having worldwide connections in the industry is an advantage that often allows us to be one of the first to learn about new ingredient developments.

Taking Our Time

While we work diligently to offer our customers the solutions they’re seeking, we won’t launch our products until we believe they are as perfect as they can be. For example, our Age IQ® Invisi-Bloc™ Sunscreen Gel took over three years to perfect because it not only had to block UVA, UVB and digital blue rays, as well as have the strength of an SPF 40, it had to feel refreshingly lightweight! Our development partners share the same desire for perfection – the patented advanced, age-fighting ingredient, SIG-1273® – found in our Age IQ Night Cream, Age IQ Day Cream and Firm Body Contour Cream – was discovered by Dr. Jeffrey Stock of Princeton University after 20 years of research. The name comes from the molecule being perfected on the 1,273rd version.

Packing Our Products with Powerful, Effective Ingredients

We believe in offering our customers products full of clean, active ingredients that are proven to produce Real Results. Our formulas use our powerhouse proprietary discoveries and tried-and-true skincare and wellness superstars. We never “sprinkle” in a small amount just so we can list it in the ingredients, we pack our products with high-concentrations of active ingredients. That means we don’t have room in our containers for fillers and fluff, and we certainly don’t have room for ingredients commonly found in lower quality products, like parabens, colorants, DEA and synthetic fragrance.

Adding Value by Addressing Multiple Signs of Aging

All our products are multifunctional because we pack each of them with many active ingredients. That adds value for our cherished customers, too. For just one of many examples, our Night Cream addresses every major sign of aging – skin texture, clarity, brightness, firmness, elasticity, appearance of wrinkles in the eye area, hyperpigmentation, hydration and more – many brands would break the active ingredients up and spread them throughout a collection of products to do what we do with one bottle of Night Cream.

Proving They Work

Neora uses independently conducted clinical trials or consumer studies, as applicable, to test our products. If the results don’t meet our high-efficacy standards, we keep working on the product until it does. Of course, the Real Results and product testimonials our customers share are some of the most important ways we can show the amazing transformations our products can produce. Be sure to take your before picture when you begin using our skincare product and Youth Factor products, so you can enter our 90-Day Challenge. Not only will it help you record the changes you might not realize are happening day-to-day, you can enter to win up to $3,000 with your younger- and healthier-looking skin.

Standing Behind the Neora Promise

We truly believe you’re going to love Neora products and the results they deliver. But if you’re not satisfied, we offer a 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee. So, why not try Neora Skincare and Wellness products now, and discover the custom-formulated products featuring superior ingredients that deliver the Real Results you deserve!

Shared by: http://neorablog.com/neora-product/ingredient-integrity/

You Deserve Better Ingredients in Meaningful Amounts

Over the past eight years, Neora has built its business and reputation on our exclusive, premium skincare and wellness line. We carefully curate our custom, proprietary formulas to bring you exceptionally effective, state-of-the-art products that you can find only at Neora. We understand the secret to our recipe for success is ultimately found in the power of packing our products with significant amounts of active ingredients that deliver the Real Results our customers expect and love.

Starting the Process

At Neora we don’t follow trends or produce copycat products, we conduct rigorous research to identify health, vitality and anti-aging concerns people have that aren’t being addressed well by the market. Then, we work tirelessly to create unique solutions to those problems.

Seeking the Absolute Best of Science and Nature

When we begin the process of creating a product, we work with universities, labs and top scientific minds in the field to seek out new discoveries that will make our formulas as efficacious as possible. We constantly search the globe for new breakthroughs from nature. Having worldwide connections in the industry is an advantage that often allows us to be one of the first to learn about new ingredient developments.

Taking Our Time

While we work diligently to offer our customers the solutions they’re seeking, we won’t launch our products until we believe they are as perfect as they can be. For example, our Age IQ® Invisi-Bloc™ Sunscreen Gel took over three years to perfect because it not only had to block UVA, UVB and digital blue rays, as well as have the strength of an SPF 40, it had to feel refreshingly lightweight! Our development partners share the same desire for perfection – the patented advanced, age-fighting ingredient, SIG-1273® – found in our Age IQ Night Cream, Age IQ Day Cream and Firm Body Contour Cream – was discovered by Dr. Jeffrey Stock of Princeton University after 20 years of research. The name comes from the molecule being perfected on the 1,273rd version.

Packing Our Products with Powerful, Effective Ingredients

We believe in offering our customers products full of clean, active ingredients that are proven to produce Real Results. Our formulas use our powerhouse proprietary discoveries and tried-and-true skincare and wellness superstars. We never “sprinkle” in a small amount just so we can list it in the ingredients, we pack our products with high-concentrations of active ingredients. That means we don’t have room in our containers for fillers and fluff, and we certainly don’t have room for ingredients commonly found in lower quality products, like parabens, colorants, DEA and synthetic fragrance.

Adding Value by Addressing Multiple Signs of Aging

All our products are multifunctional because we pack each of them with many active ingredients. That adds value for our cherished customers, too. For just one of many examples, our Night Cream addresses every major sign of aging – skin texture, clarity, brightness, firmness, elasticity, appearance of wrinkles in the eye area, hyperpigmentation, hydration and more – many brands would break the active ingredients up and spread them throughout a collection of products to do what we do with one bottle of Night Cream.

Proving They Work

Neora uses independently conducted clinical trials or consumer studies, as applicable, to test our products. If the results don’t meet our high-efficacy standards, we keep working on the product until it does. Of course, the Real Results and product testimonials our customers share are some of the most important ways we can show the amazing transformations our products can produce. Be sure to take your before picture when you begin using our skincare product and Youth Factor products, so you can enter our 90-Day Challenge. Not only will it help you record the changes you might not realize are happening day-to-day, you can enter to win up to $3,000 with your younger- and healthier-looking skin.

Standing Behind the Neora Promise

We truly believe you’re going to love Neora products and the results they deliver. But if you’re not satisfied, we offer a 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee. So, why not try Neora Skincare and Wellness products now, and discover the custom-formulated products featuring superior ingredients that deliver the Real Results you deserve!