My Cancer Story: Remember the Caregiver

Barbara and Cliff

Soon after Dr. Fried gave me the cancer diagnosis, I thought about Cliff.

He’d need to come to appointments, stand by me during surgery, and take care of me afterwards, possibly during months of chemo. He’d do the money and most of the insurance stuff. Cancer would curtail our summer plans and maybe the plans for the rest of our lives.

As the days went by, I knew it was my cancer. The burden was on me (In me! My uterus to be exact).

But I tried to be mindful of how this would affect Cliff, too.

Cliff’s mom and I used to talk for hours. Many of her pronouncements on life proved true, but one didn’t. “When you go into surgery, you go alone,” she told me, recounting the story of her thyroid operation at age forty. Nope. Not me. I took her son with me. I never felt alone.

Our good friend Lisa Flinn wrote Cliff this note two weeks after my surgery:


Lisa's Note

Others too, thought of Cliff. Visitors arrived with a favorite beer for him to enjoy while we all chatted. Those who prepared food sent plenty since they know my husband chows down with gusto.

I’ve made a new vow: Remember the caregiver!

Photo Top: Cliff and I at Mazen’s first birthday last fall. Note the grins of grandparents.

Photo Bottom: Lisa’s note. The “clear to see (even for me)” is in reference to her macular degeneration. Lisa’s a cancer survivor. Read her post, “Tai Chi Brings Balance after Breast Cancer” on Friend for the Ride. 

She’s one of my cancer role models! Others include Frances, Lisa W., Vibeke, Karen, Linda, Mark, and Haralee (Check out her sleepwear line!) Thanks, friends.

Menopause, Night Sweats

Haralee! Cool Garments for Hot Women (and a Giveaway)

Hope and Lisa aadorable

A post by Haralee Weintraub, creator of Sleepwear: Cool Garments for Hot Women:

When my doctor asked how many night sweats I had a night, I laughed.

Count them instead of sheep?

I had to reply too many to count!

At age 48 I was diagnosed with invasive breast cancer, estrogen positive. What that means is estrogen was fueling my cancer, and I had to stop producing estrogen.

The chemotherapy and various injections put me into menopause almost overnight. I went from some one who was always cold to a dripping sweating mess.

I was familiar with wicking clothes from the slopes and trails but could not find anything soft and wicking for sleep.

I took out my 1968 sewing machine I bought with babysitting money years ago and cut up some old bike shorts and fashioned a nightgown.

Thankfully there are no pictures of this first prototype, but it worked. I did not wake up cold, wet or freezing!

I spent the next 2 years sourcing fabric, sewers, and pattern makers to launch my on line company, Haralee.Com Sleepwear.

We launched our line on a local TV show and at a booth at the Race for the Cure.

I use friends as models who are either cancer survivors or have been touched by cancer. I am very lucky to have friends and their daughters brave enough to model pajamas and nighties!

Group shot of 4 models

Barbara is beautifully modeling Holly. Holly was designed for the woman who does not want to pull a top over her head.


We do not use lace so the wicking properties are not reduced.

We do not use buttons or doo-dads for the comfort of belly sleepers.

We use vibrant colors, and flattering styles so our customers just look hot. We make ‘Cool Garments for Hot Women!’

Our pajamas are perfect for travel. They are lightweight, dry quickly, afford a level of modesty for room service or visiting friends, feel wonderful and of course help you stay dry and get a better night sleep.

Never in a million years did I think a cancer diagnosis would lead to becoming a menopausal entrepreneur.

We have helped thousands of women get a better night sleep. Because cancer made such a profound impact on my life we give a percentage of every sale to breast cancer research.

View our line here. For Friend for the Ride readers, enjoy 15% off your purchase with promo code: Ride

Giveaway: Haralee is offering one lucky winner  a pair of pajamas or a nightgown or a set of pillowcases from their line! To enter, please leave a comment  by March 15 saying you’d like to win. US and Canada only. Thanks!

Haralee’s Blog: You can check out Haralee’s blog here!

Haralee Weintraub spent 25 years working for Fortune 500 and 100 companies in sales, marketing, training and management.

Haralee Head shot from Mariane
In 2004, after her invasive breast cancer diagnosis, she looked closely at her career path and chose to become an entrepreneur. Now as the CEO of Haralee. Com Sleepwear she is involved in every aspect of the business. Haralee.Com makes ‘Cool Garments for Hot Women’. It is a company with a lot of heart and a lot of soul and a bit too much sweat! There are many people behind the scenes that make a company run. Haralee thinks she has the greatest people supporting her company. Here are some of the people that are the backbone of Haralee.Com.