I’ve never been to a concert. It’s always been on my list of things to do someday. So, when I stumbled upon a note posted on Facebook about the Kenny Chesney concert that took place at Miller Park in Milwaukee recently, I took the time to read it because it was yet another concert that I had really wanted to go to but didn’t.
The note was written by Heidi Le Hew who was at the concert with her husband that night. She was enjoying the show and her kid-free date night when she noticed the group of women in front of her. They were laughing and obviously having a blast. One woman in particular stood out to Heidi.
“She was beautiful. She was petite with a short pixy haircut that only some girls can pull off. I noticed her because of her smile. It never left her face. She was the first one in the group there and greeted each of her friends with a huge hug.”
As the night went on, she noticed the woman start to wind down.
“She wasn’t dancing as much and her friend began to hold her hand in support. Slowly she sunk into her friend’s embrace.”
Her friend turned to Heidi and struck up a conversation, revealing that she had never been to a country music show before. But what she said next is what would inspire Heidi to write her note.
“We’re here celebrating our friend,” she said, as she gestured to the one she was holding up and the one I was watching all evening. “She has stage IV breast cancer and isn’t doing well at at all. This concert is on her bucket list.”
In that moment, Heidi felt the music stop.
“My heart sunk and right then time literally stood still. How could this be? She was so beautiful, the life of the party. Full of life, but losing it all right before our eyes.”
Heidi turned to the woman, who then knew that Heidi knew.
“With tears in my eyes I put my hands on her face. ‘You are so beautiful,’ I remarked, and continued, ‘Have you ever been to a party and noticed that one lady who steals the show? The one who works the room better than the rest? The one who sparkles effortlessly? That’s you! You’ve got it girl!'”
The woman managed to embrace Heidi, a perfect stranger to her, before collapsing into her seat. Heidi knew that was all she had to give at that point.
“I watched her concerned friends scramble for water and napkins and trade shoulders to lean on. Nobody wanted to leave, especially her. This was her night.”
But she was spent. Her friends led her out of Miller Park while Kenny was still singing, and Heidi was left to contemplate how this complete stranger had touched her heart.
“Forty thousand strangers under the stars at Miller Park, Kenny blasting, and my heart pounding. I stood among it all and cried. Some for her, although I knew she had it right, but mostly for my newly found outlook on life. She will never know it, but I will never be the same. I am so humbly grateful.”
But as fate would have it, she would know! Heidi posted her note on Facebook the Sunday following the concert, and it was quickly shared through social media. Through mutual friends who happened to see her note, Heidi discovered the name of the woman was Molly Fuglestad. By that Tuesday, they had connected and were chatting on Facebook!
Molly is 36 years old, married, and has 3 small children. She was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2010. She underwent a double mastectomy, radiation, and chemotherapy. She thought she was in the clear, but in 2012 the cancer metastasized in her sternum and spine. Molly continues to fight it with her friends & family by her side. She refers to them as her “army.” (Milwaukee Journal Sentinal)
I discovered the note when a member of Molly’s Army, Erin Fuglestad Joanis, her sister-in-law, shared the note on her Facebook page. Erin says you would never know that Molly has stage IV cancer if you just met her.
“She always has that infectious smile on her face and is truly living life to the fullest.”
Breast cancer doesn’t stand in the way of Molly’s fitness goals either. She is currently training for the Susan G. Koman 3-Day, a 60 mile walk to help raise funds for breast cancer research.
It’s amazing how a random note posted on Facebook can touch so many lives. I chatted with Heidi, who says she’s still shocked by how many people have found something in her note. I’m not. I know I found something in that note. I’m going to stop putting things off until someday. I’m going to start living and loving life a little bit more each day! All thanks to two strangers and Kenny Chesney.
To read the rest of Heidi’s beautiful note, click here: More Than Kenny…
Photos courtesy of Molly Fuglestad and Erin Fuglestad Joanis.