Let’s do some introductions, shall we? First and foremost, thank you for stopping by The Clean Cado! I’m Annie Slayton, owner and author of this space. What is The Clean Cado? I started this blog as a creative outlet for me. More on this later, but I am finishing up treatment for Stage 2A breast cancer. After my diagnosis, my world changed. My priorities shifted. My “walls” came crashing down. I want to contribute and hope to be a resource to others that have been diagnosed with cancer. Whether it’s just sharing the nitty gritty details of my double mastectomy or chemotherapy treatments through my vlogs, or sharing an exciting clean and green product that your family would like…I am definitely no expert, but I want to help you as you navigate your path to a cleaner and greener lifestyle.
Why The Clean Cado? Cado is the name in our house for avocados. We eat a lot of them in our house. We are talking pounds of cado. Our second, Amelia, has food allergies, and her love of “cado” from an early age was an important way to help her (and her brother and sisters) eat healthy. Cado represents to us healthy, green, clean, and energetic…and through this blog, The Clean Cado, I hope to help bring that to as many people as possible.
Originally from the suburbs of Chicago (more on that later), I married the love of my life, Josh, in May 2012. Shortly thereafter, I became pregnant with our first child, Cora, who was born in September 2013. From there, things got a little crazy. Amelia was born in December 2014, Henry in May 2016, and Rose, our caboose, in September 2017. Yes, we had four kids in four years (and one week, to be exact) and we wouldn’t change a thing! Oh…and we also have two dogs. Lambeau, a 105 pound golden retriever, and Olive, an 8 pound morkie. You should SEE the looks we get when we all go for walks in our neighborhood.
Through it all, I spent about 14 years in corporate America before finally moving on after Rose was born. Two working parents with four young kids at home just wasn’t the right recipe for our family and my heart no longer desired the traditional “working mom” title. Exercise, healthy living and eating, and keeping our family as toxic-free as possible had always been extremely important to me…so Josh and I started brainstorming ideas on how to turn my passions into a business. And then in early April 2018, while feeding Rose, I found a lump. On April 24, 2018, I was diagnosed with stage 2A breast cancer. It was in my left breast and lymph node. From there, everything changed…and changed fast (and you can read more about my breast cancer journey here).
Now here is where things got really interesting. The same day I was diagnosed, Josh received an incredible job offer for an education company in Minneapolis. For many reasons, it was an incredible opportunity, but the timing was hilarious. Same day as a cancer diagnosis? With four young kids? Sure…why not. Let’s just throw in a move and new job into THAT mix.
After much discussion, we decided that we needed to push forward. I said from the start that cancer was a part of my life…a BIG part now, but just a part. I did not want cancer to define me, and part of that was pushing through and focusing on the rest of my life, our lives. It wasn’t an easy decision, and given our circumstances, has had some challenges, but we knew it was the right decision. So from the first week in May to moving June 15, we sold a house, bought another house (via a FaceTime tour…), I had a double mastectomy and reconstructive surgery. Josh started his job in July, I started chemotherapy in late July, finished chemotherapy in October, and will finish everything with 28 rounds of radiation completed by Christmas 2018. 2019 will be a fresh start!
My story is my story, but we each have our own story. Life is a matter of perspective, of circumstances, of challenges. Hopefully my journey – the good, the bad, the silly, the mundane, the big things, and the little things – can help others navigate their own journey and live a happy and clean life. Cado On!