Alexis D’Elia had the biggest, most beautiful smile I had ever seen. Not only was she beautiful, but she was a cardiologist for crying out loud. She was truly a force.
Back in 2013, my good friend Michelle requested a Pretty Package for her childhood best friend, Alexis. After I sent that Pretty Package full of the brightest lipstick I could find, Alexis and I got in touch and immediately became kindred spirits. We had similar diagnoses, and were both young, vibrant women who loved clothes, shopping, lipstick and New York City! Alexis and I met on many occasions, and I knew it was my job to lift her up, to empower her to keep “Fighting Pretty” and to keep smiling with that beautiful smile of hers.
One day, I was driving and the song, “Diamonds” by Rihanna came on the radio. Tears ran down my face. Something came over me. I felt this need to call Alexis and remind her that “ … You and I … We’re beautiful like diamonds in the sky… Eye to eye,…So alive…We’re beautiful like diamonds in the sky.” I wanted to remind her that no one, and nothing could take this away from us.
In 2015, I was so ecstatic to hear that Alexis was engaged! She found her true love and had a huge beautiful rock to show for it! Life was good, and going in the right direction. Shortly after, I was devastated to hear Alexis’ cancer came back with a vengeance. Michelle and I cried. We drank lots of wine. And cried some more. It’s just not fair. Why Alexis? She’s so beautiful. She has a whole life to live! Why her and not me?
In October 2016, Alexis D’Elia, the woman who lit up a room, went to the angels. The world went quiet for awhile. Everything seemed a little greyer – like the world was off balance.
Months later, Michelle told me she found a drawing that Alexis did for her a few years ago when Michelle moved to Oregon. It was a mathematical map (only Alexis would draw something so intricate!) and it showed the distance from New York to Oregon. When Michelle showed me, my eyes filled up with tears again. There was a diamond on the top of that map, with arrows pointing in all directions.
It was so clear all along. Alexis was the "Diamond in the Sky" : encouraging us to shoot for the stars.
Michelle is full of beautiful tattoos and decided she wanted this map on her leg in honor of her best childhood friend. In one moment, I said – I’m going with. Let’s do this for Alexis. For me, it was a reminder that together, Alexis and I are Diamonds in the Sky. It is a reminder every day that I am Fighting Pretty and I need to shoot for the stars and live the life I should - because I can.
This is for you Alexis. I will love you forever, my kindred spirit.
This month, Fighting Pretty is collecting stories from women who are "Diamonds in the Sky." We have 5 special Pretty Packages to giveaway...so give share your story for a chance to win!