A Little Light in Heavy
[It started slowly as we caught up to where we had left off the last time we talked.]
[Just] Mike: The last time we talked, we were talking about the fact that guys, in general, don’t like to ask for help; they basically don’t reach out, even when they need help. One of your statements was that it is a strength to admit that you need help; it doesn’t show that you’re weak, because no one can do everything on their own.
The first time he met her, she laughed in his face.
It was a cold, January morning in Detroit Lakes, Minnesota, in 1992. Dan Cramer was working for a political campaign at a Democratic meeting at the local Holiday Inn, and between presentations, he spotted what he describes as a ‘really beautiful young woman’ sitting at a rival campaign table. He walked up to her, in his brand-new suit and tie (something that made him stand out at the mostly informal event) and introduced himself.
“Hi, I’m Dan Cramer. I don’t believe we’ve ever met.”
That's when she laughed in his face. That was it or so he thought.
“I remember being in the doctor’s office,” Eric begins. “The oncologist and healthcare coordinator came in, and I knew it wasn't good by the look on their faces. Ashley was holding Madelyn when we got the full cancer diagnosis. They gave us the news, started talking about survivorship, and asking us all sorts of questions.
“I remember thinking that I was going to be a single dad to a new baby. I’m like, ‘how are you going to do that, Eric?’
“I got up, said I wasn’t feeling well and wanted to get out of the room. But I also knew I couldn’t leave. I’m standing there, and the next thing I know, I passed out.
“I wake up and nurses are checking my blood pressure and I’m saying, ‘Don’t worry about me - Ashley’s the one who’s sick.’ I’m looking over to her. She comes over, holds my hand and says, ‘Live with no regrets.’ That was something my dad used to say.
“I knew that from that point on, whatever happened, everything was going to be okay.”
It wasn’t a big thing. Many people may not have even noticed it. They might have just turned their heads, stared through the dusty, bus windows and gotten lost in the Peruvian mountainside and the music playing in the one earbud.
To Andrés, though, it was a lasting, meaningful impression that would stay with him throughout his life.
And Eva had just made it.
The Meysembourgs came into 2018 on a high note.
Their daughter, Mila, was born 3 months earlier, in October, and Nick just became partner in a sales company he’d worked at for over 11 years.
They were on a roll.
Tom Scott: Giving all he had and finding all that matters most.
A lot has changed for Tom in the past 3 years.
Three years ago, his wife, Dani, was diagnosed with breast cancer and given 3 years to put her ‘affairs in order.'
Early in the spring of this year, two and a half years after her diagnosis, Dani passed away.
Logan Greene: Talking a lot and saying more.
In a year of monumental, global upheaval, where COVID-19 grips the world, and calls for social justice tear at the fabric of our society, people want to get out, but they’re told to stay in. They want to speak, but they’re told to cover their mouths.
The world of certainty is no more, and nobody can tell you for certain when it will be back.
Amid this chaos, the Greene's world was flipped upside down too.
Erik Therwanger: caregiving, one goal at a time. Building on the momentum of hope.
Erik Therwanger is all about setting goals and meeting them, then building on that momentum to do even greater things.
He’s all about giving back, serving others, and looking forward, with hope, toward the future.
Brian Zahn: From real love to real loss, to learning to live again - for their son and because that’s what she would want!
Somewhere between classes, tests, parties, and everything else that goes on when young people go off to college, Brian and Melissa met.
It was 2005 on the campus of the University of Minnesota, Duluth.
They had their whole lives ahead of them.
Mark Mattson: Looking back with fondness and love. Looking forward with courage and resolution, knowing that she will always be with them!
High school sweethearts
They met in high school through mutual friends. Soon after, they started dating and continued dating through college.
“We just hit it off and dated through high school, without all the drama of breakups and getting back together. We just got along well and were a great fit together.”