Hockey Fights Cancer & #SpreadTheKindness Link Up #45

Cancer. That dreaded “C” word that we all fear and dread. The disease that has effected every single one of us in some way. A diagnosis that feels like a death sentence and literally changes lives forever.

No, I have not been diagnosed with cancer. But too many of my friends and family have. Both of my parents lost their battles with the disease many years ago. Both of them were quite young. Not much older than I am now, in fact. So the topic of cancer is one that is near and dear to my heart because it did change my life forever. My husband and my children never knew my parents. All they get are stories. I try my best to keep the memories alive so that my kids have some idea of who their maternal grandparents were. But the memories are only mine. So all that my kids and my husband get is my perception of who my parents were. And sometimes, quite frankly, that is just not enough.

*This is not a sponsored post.  All thoughts and opinions are entirely my own.

But we cannot undo the past. All we can do is make changes based on what we have learned from the past. Important realizations and initiatives can come out of tragedy and struggle. There is a lot of greatness that can come from battles like these. Whether the battles are lost or won, there are stories of strength and faith and passion and love and togetherness and community and kindness. This post is not about my personal story with cancer.  Instead, today, I want to share with you a story about one woman’s journey that has inspired me on so many levels.

Nicholle Anderson (Image Source)

Her name is Nicholle Anderson. If you follow professional hockey, then you know quite well who she is. She is the strength and inspiration standing behind her goaltender husband, Ottawa Senator Craig Anderson. She is also a childhood friend of mine. However, I will not pretend that we are close friends…we are merely connected on Facebook due to the fact that we grew up in the same small town, were members of the same swim team as very young children, and have a multitude of mutual friends. I have not seen her in person in probably 30 years. But because I knew her once upon a time and because of my own very personal relationship with cancer, I have followed her journey very closely from the beginning. This is her story. And I am so completely inspired by it that I need to share it.

From Nicholle’s most recent blog post, A Year Later

A little over a year ago, Nicholle was diagnosed with stage 4 Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma, a very rare cancer that is caused by the Epstein-Barr virus, the same virus that causes mononucleosis. From the very beginning, Nicholle decided to be public and forthright with all matters concerning her battle. She seized the opportunity to educate and assist others in any way she could…all the while she was fighting for her life. Using the tagline Every Moment Counts, she documented each step of her journey in her blog, Stick by Nik. As the NHL community, Facebook friends, and family rallied beside her, she fought the hard fight and she came out on top. Today, Nicholle is cancer free.

Nicholle Anderson, the NHL’s newest Ambassador for Hockey Fights Cancer (Image Source)

But her fight does not end there. She continues to fight this dreadful disease by spreading awareness and education in her new role as the NHL Hockey Fights Cancer Ambassador. Hockey Fights Cancer™ is an initiative within the NHL community that wishes to inspire courage and hope in families that are effected by cancer. You can join the Hockey Fights Cancer team by donating, by attending a Hockey Fights Cancer game, or by sharing your personal cancer story on social media using #HockeyFightsCancer. Donations to the Hockey Fights Cancer Fund can be made here.

Craig and Nicholle Anderson

As the newest Hockey Fights Cancer Ambassador, Nicholle’s mission is this:

“If I can get the message out there in this next month to even encourage people to make sure they’re following up on their own doctor visits and cluing in on their body and saying, ‘OK this isn’t normal, I’ve never had this, I need to get checked,’ then I’m doing the right thing.” -Nicholle Anderson

Recently, Nicholle has been visiting Hope Lodges around the country sharing her inspirational story with other cancer patients currently undergoing treatment. During this process, Nicholle is also finding inspiration from all the patients she is meeting. Hope Lodges are cancer treatment facilities established by the American Cancer Society to provide free lodging for patients and their caregivers during the treatment process. Donations to Hockey Fights Cancer will also go to supporting The American Cancer Society’s Hope Lodges.

Image Source

To illustrate what a truly incredible woman Nicholle is, I want to share this personal interaction that I had with her last November, very shortly after she received her diagnosis and was already undergoing some pretty intense treatment. As I was lying in a hospital bed in pre-op to have a tubal ligation, I was posting on Facebook and I received this comment from Nicholle, “Prayers for a successful day! Good luck!” What I was dealing with waiting for a routine procedure was nothing compared to what she was enduring in the fight of her life.  I was so moved by her thoughtfulness to just reach out and send some of her positive energy my way. But that is the woman whom she is.

She is strong, she is kind, she is thoughtful, she is positive, she is selfless, and she is hands down one of the most inspiring women I have ever known.  And because she is all of these things, she deserves the support of other strong, inspiring, empowering women.  And so I implore you, my fabulous community of strong, inspiring, empowering blogger friends and readers to support Nicholle’s initiative by visiting some of these websites, learning more about her journey and how you can help Hockey Fight Cancer, and share her initiative with your audiences. By spreading the word, together we can make a difference.  Together we can fight cancer.  Together we are stronger. 

Craig Anderson being named the winner of the Masterton Trophy

“These are three things I have learned; create moments that bring happiness, find the positive in each and everyday, and eliminate stress and negativity.” -Nicholle Anderson

Image Source


Stick by Nik: Every Moment Counts: Nicholle Anderson’s personal blog documenting her cancer journey.

Hockey Fights Cancer

Donate to Hockey Fights Cancer

American Cancer Society Hope Lodge


Nicholle Anderson joins NHL’s ‘Hockey Fights Cancer’ efforts

Nicholle Anderson embraces spotlight during Hockey Fights Cancer month

Warrenspiece: It’s a family affair for opening faceoff at Senators game on Saturday

Exclusive: Nicholle Anderson’s road to recovery has begun but it’s far from over

Craig and Nicholle Anderson: We’re grateful for everything we have

Craig Anderson of Senators says wife is cancer-free

Craig Anderson of Senators wins Masterton Trophy


HFC: Anderson visits cancer lodge

Do you have a personal cancer story to share?  If you would like to share in the comments, please do and I will be sure to send prayers and positive energy your way.  Or speak out about your journey on social media and use #HockeyFightsCancer You will be joined by a powerful community committed to support you in your battle.

And now your favorite posts from last week’s link party.

Suzanne of Crazy Blonde Life shared her post Happy Halloween! She looks perfectly ready for all the Fall holidays in her chic black and white outfit.

Suzanne of Crazy Blonde Life

And Nina of Sharing a Journey linked her post Getting Cozy: Styling a Sweater Dress. I love how versatile her sweater dress is for a warm and comfortable Fall vibe.

Nina of Sharing a Journey

Helping hockey fight cancer on the edge,


Linking up with these Fabulous Link Ups.


I am a 40 something Army wife and stay-at-home mother of 2 boys and 2 cats named Dave and Frankie. I have a passion for helping other women feel fabulous in the midst of this crazy, beautiful life.

60 Responses

  1. What an inspiring and brave woman Shelbee. Do send on my best wishes xx

  2. I always love seeing pro sports take a stand for a cause, and this one is so great. I’ve actually heard of this family before – I can’t imagine going through what they have!


    • Annessa, thank you so much for your kind words. This family amazed me every step of the way with their strength and resilience in overcoming probably the hardest battle of their lives. This was certainly a case where love won the day! There is so much to be said for strength in community as well and Nicholle’s journey was also a testament to that.


  3. Such a touching story, and so sad to hear of your loss, I can only imagine how you feel. xx The pain never goes away just becomes manageable. xx Sending you hugs Shelbee. x Jacqui

    • Jacqui, thank you so much for your kind words. It is been many years since my loss, so it is just what my life is and all is great. But I will continue to stand with others and fight the good fight in the hopes that we can prevent other losses.


  4. That is one of my favorite quotes ‘fighting the storm’. You know my story… and not sure how I got thru it but definitely not the same person as when we started. Xxoo

    • Kim, thank you so much for stopping by and commenting. I am so glad that you made it through the storm. And these storms do change us forever. Thankfully, we are often even better on the other side of them.


  5. Thanks for this inspiring post, Shelbee.

  6. Thank you for sharing Nicholle’s story. Cancer knows no bounds and is such a cruel disease. My brother had a very rare lymphoma almost 8 years ago. I am grateful everyday that he beat it but it was so hard. God bless Nicholle and her mission!

    • Kellyann, thank you so much for sharing your personal experience with cancer. I think it is so important to talk about it and the way it does effect us whether the battles are won or lost…we come out stronger in the end for going through it. I am so glad that your brother beat the disease…and it keeps you feeling grateful for the little things in life, doesn’t it? Nicholle is truly remarkable and I am so thankful that she allowed me to share her story here. Thank you for stopping by and I hope you have the most blessed of days!


  7. Thank you so very much for featuring my blog this week. I love your blog and it is such an honor! Hugs! Nina

    • Nina, thank you for always providing such inspiring content from outfits to thoughts on life to your personal journey! I love your blog as well so it is my pleasure to feature you! Have a fabulous day, my friend.


  8. Thank you for sharing her story and this important message. I lost my late husband and father to cancer so I appreciate you sharing this on your blog It’s so good to see amazing things coming out of terrible circumstances like this. God bless her and you Shelbee!

    • Kathrine, I am so sorry to hear of your loss and am sending lots of positive energy your way. I think it is so important to talk about and share our painful stories and our battles and our struggles. It is the best way to create a sense of community and isn’t that what makes us stronger every time, in every battle…togetherness? No one should ever have to fight alone. Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing your personal experience with me.


  9. Shelbee, how wonderful that Nicholle is now cancer free and I applaud her decision to be public about her fight. It’s not an easy thing to do but it does reinforce the message that cancer is not shameful. Thank you for sharing this inspirational person and your personal perspective.


    • Rena, thank you so much for stopping by and commenting. But more importantly, thank you for being open with your personal story on your blog. Your courage and strength is equally inspiring and I am so glad that you are doing well! There is no shame in any of our struggles and by sharing our stories we can fight a better fight together!


  10. What a fabulous cause, Shelbee!! You always find the best people around your area who are doing great things!!

    • Thanks so much, Jodie! I think if we just keep our eyes, ears, hearts, and minds open, it is easy to spot all of the best, most amazing and inspiring people! They are all around us.


  11. Beautiful post. Best wishes to Nicholle. Lost my dad and a childhood friend to cancer and have had several friends/acquaintance that have successfully fought the battle.

    Elizabeth |

    • Elizabeth, thank you so much for stopping by and for sharing your personal experience with cancer. It is a disease that really does effect everyone in some way. Sending lots of positive thoughts to you and all of your loved ones…those who have lost the fight, those who have won, and those who may have a fight ahead of them one day.


  12. Love this post. So inspiring – love when people get together for a great cause.

    Life is just Rosie

  13. What a very moving and beautiful post. Thanks for sharing her story. She is a positive light in this crazy world.

    Thanks for hosting and have a wonderful week.

  14. Shelbee, thank you for sharing this motivating and inspirational story. She sounds like an amazing woman and i love the cause. Several people i am close to have had cancer and won the battle. it is good to hear. i am sorry to hear about your parents.
    Have a great week!
    jess xx

    • Jess, thanks so much for stopping by and reading Nicholle’s story. I am so inspired by strong, courageous women who persevere against all odds. And it is in this togetherness and community support where we can work wonders!


  15. My husband lost his parents in their lower sixties and it does leave a hole behind, so many memories we won’t share with them. His mom died from cancer. Nicholle is such a brave,strong and beautiful woman, love hearing about her story and learning more about what she has done. It is people like her that truly make a difference!


    • Carrie, thank you so much for reading and for sharing your personal experience with me. It is the missed memories that you never get to create with lost loved ones that really do leave the biggest hole. But I believe that sharing our stories and our journeys with each other is how we can best heal our wounds. And then to use what we have learned to help others is so important.


  16. this is such a fabulous cause! thank you for sharing.

  17. What a wonderful post, so very kind and thoughtful to share. Thank you.


    • Cherie, thank you so much for this comment! I really appreciate it. It is very important to me to use my blog space for all things good. And if I can educate and help through this forum then I feel successful at the end of the day.


  18. Shelbee it is a very interesting post with an important message. Thanks so much for sharing her story. What a brave woman.Best wishes.
    XO Tina

  19. I love your blog because you really let us in, and I feel like I know you better each time I come back. Nicholle sure is an inspiration! Than you for sharing her story as well!

    • Roxanne, thank you so much for that! I am so glad that I make you feel that way. I try to be as open as I can here without going over board! I appreciate all of your support.


  20. True cancer effects all of us at some point. My grandmother died with breast cancer and my mom is a survivor. Great post Shelbee!

    • Cheryl, it is so true that cancer effects everyone in some way whether it is themselves, a loved one, family member or friend, or just an acquaintance. Everyone knows know someone. Thank you for sharing your personal experience. I am so sorry about your grandmother but also I so glad that your mother is a survivor. We need to keep sharing our stories because together we can really make a difference.


  21. She is such an inspiration to others! Thanks for sharing her story!

  22. What an inspiring and beautiful post Shelbee. I love how open you are in your posts…I have friends who lost a parent at a young age, but not both. I’m sorry for your loss. Your attitude and outlook is admirable. And I’m sure your kind words about Nicholle brought tears to her eyes. Thank you for keeping us aware!

    • Chrissy, thank you so much for stopping by, for sharing your personal experience with cancer, and for your kind words and continued support. I really do feel the need to use my blog space for all things good including spreading awareness and sharing inspiring stories that can help others.


  23. What an incredibly inspiring woman! I do remember hearing about her cancer I am so glad that she is now cancer free! She’s doing wonderful things and I only hope that she is going to be able to do everything she wants!

  24. I’m so sorry to hear about your parents! I’m sorry to hear about Nicholle Anderson, too! She sounds like such an incredible person! She is so lucky to have you supporting her! My husband’s mom passed away of bone marrow cancer, a year before I met him. I never got the chance to meet her. My grandpa also had bone marrow cancer. He was able to be treated and it was in remission for a few years. His body finally couldn’t handle it anymore, and he passed away.

    • Natalie, thank you so much for stopping by, for your very kind words, and for sharing your personal experience with cancer. It really touches everyone in some way. I am sorry to hear of the loss you and your family have suffered as a result of it as well.


  25. This is such an inspiring post Shelbee.

  26. Such a great cause to raise awareness of. So many heartbreaking stories. I know a few people that have lost their lives to it 🙁 Sorry to hear aboutyour parents losing their lives to it too x

  27. White pants suit you! I always get nervous about white pants. I do own one pair, a three quarter leg pair, I wore them the other day. They were a bit tight around the middle lol. #passmeasalad What a fantastic human Nicholle is x

    • Alicia, thanks so much! My white pants do some awful things around the crotch area! I have to watch the way I stand for pictures or it can be quite unsightly! #passmeasaladtoo And yes, Nicholle is so amazing and inspiring, indeed!


  28. Such an inspiring lady, thank you for sharing. Sending Nicholle my very best wishes xxx


  29. Indeed the C word is too close to home. I am sorry that in your case too. I’ve had several relatives with this disease, some made it through and some I still miss. What a very touching story, thank you for sharing.

    • Lorena, thank you so much for sharing your experience. It is a disease that effects us all in some way. I am sorry to hear that you have suffered loss as well. This is why I feel like I need to share the stories like these that have so much inspiration.


  30. Wow Shelbee what an amazing woman and Im so pleased that she is cancer free today.
    You too are inspiring by telling her story and spreading the love,,,
    best to you and your
    ps thanks for linking up too!

    • Ashley, thank you so much for this wonderful comment! I feel like I need to use my blog space to educate and inspire and it is stories like Nicholle’s that definitely need to reach as wide an audience as possible! So I am just doing my small part. I appreciate your kindness, my friend!


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