February 2, 2022
Hidden Valley Ski Resort
Mandy, a Breast Cancer Survivor is likely the biggest fan of skiing among anyone you know! Thanks to Rae of Hope, she spent an entire day on the slopes and said, “I cannot thank YASU, Rae of Hope & Rae’s family enough for this amazing gift. I’m still in some ways trying to process the overwhelming generosity.
I started skiing when I was 5 years old, my most favorite place has always been in the mountains. Since I was diagnosed with TNBC (Triple Negative Breast Cancer) at 37 in 2017, I haven’t done much skiing. Last season I could literally hear the mountains calling my name. I put on the most uncomfortable boots in the world, stepped into those bindings and away I went. It was like riding a bike, pure joy and peace.
Going into this season I didn’t make any commitments, season pass-wise, as I was caring for my elderly uncle. I lost him on Thanksgiving morning 2021. Those mountains were speaking much louder now…
I didn’t ask for much help during cancer treatments/surgery/post surgery and years afterwards. Partially because when you’re in it, you’re just focused on fighting your ass off and you have no idea what you need, want, or what your body will allow you to have. But Rae of Hope spoke to me…just like those mountains.I was friends with Raelene and still to this day miss her terribly. I miss her smile, laugh and awesome text messages. I needed an escape, I needed a way to process, grieve, be alone and just BE. I literally heard Rae’s voice telling me to go to my happy place, now it may not have been her most ideal spot since it wasn’t poolside, but layering up is my idea of bliss!
I anxiously applied for a season pass to ski at Hidden Valley…remember I’m not that great at asking for things! Snow started to finally fall after the first of the year. I cried when I got the email letting me know that a pass was waiting for me at the office. And I’ve been loving it ever since!
There are few things that I love more than being on a ski lift, hearing the skis glide below you, checking out your next run and what side to come down, the utter beauty of Mother Nature. I love the peace in the mountains and how everything disappears once I’m locked into those bindings. It makes my soul smile and fills my heart with joy. I come home sore, exhausted and alive every single time. It feels like a new part of me awakes with each run.
Thank you Rae…thank you for that last message.”