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The Sad Bitch Monologue

The Sad Bitch Monologue

My mom told me she had terminal cancer when I was 8 years old. I remember the day like it was yesterday, I was sitting on her bed at nighttime with my sister beside me. She told us it was a rare cancer called neuroendocrine, but she didn’t really talk about it any further. She also told me she would likely be dead by the time I was 14.

As an eight-year-old I didn’t know how to process this information; I loved my mom so much, but it was really hard to comprehend what death or dying actually means until it actually happens. So, I proceeded with my life, I was in hard-core competitive gymnastics that consumed my time during the mornings and evenings while school consumed my days.

My parents divorced when I was young, and I would spend 4 days with my mom and then 4 days with my dad. When I was at my dad’s house, I would cry at night because I missed my mom so much. My dad used to put my mom on the phone so I could talk to her even though I had just seen her probably 2 or 3 days prior. Now that I think about it, maybe that was my way of being affected by her cancer diagnosis.

As the years moved on, my mom went through surgeries, radiation, chemo, all the treatments you can think of to keep her alive for as long as possible. I can remember visiting her in the hospital after her biggest surgeries, I would get ready by hand-making her a card since my stepmom was really into scrapbooking at the time. Little did I know that I’d be going through the folders of the desk in our basement years later only to find all the cards I had made for her throughout my entire life.

My mom and I were close, but I didn’t know how to handle her. I wanted to have a “normal” mom, not a mom who had to take a nap every afternoon or a mom who took many pills to count. The cancer was this entity that was always present, but we would rarely ever address it. I live with that guilt now. I could have been better to her. I could have asked how she was doing more often. I could have helped her out more. I could have driven her to more appointments. I could have loved her more. But here I am now, almost 22 years old and full of grief and regret.

In July 2020, my mom passed away from a stroke that happened after a mild operation which was meant to help with her cancer symptoms. Ironic, isn’t it? After 12 years of living with terminal cancer, she died of a stroke. Her death wasn’t instant. She came out of surgery conscious, but in pain. Then her best friend received a call from the hospital saying she took a turn for the worse during the night. Long story short, it was a long week of confusion, crying, and deciding whether to take her off life support, or keep praying. You can probably assume which option we went with…

I took a lot of responsibility after she died. I wanted to honour her in every way I could, so I kept up with her gardening and I took care of the three dogs and house that she left my sister and me. I thought maybe she would have appreciated that. I kept everything in the house exactly how she had left it for as long as I possibly could. I even took photos of how she left her bedroom because I didn’t ever want to forget the way she left things; the way I could still smell her when I entered her closet. Grief doesn’t get better with time. My episodes are spaced out more, but they hit me even harder than they used to.

With my mom passing away I decided I needed a break from university, so I took an internship and ended up working with entrepreneurs and founders in marketing. I’ve always wanted to start a real business, but at the time, it wasn’t the first thing on my mind. Being my second last year in school, university was no longer that exciting and with my mom gone I was feeling a deep void. I was having a hard time getting out of bed in the morning and really, I just needed something to feel passionate about and look forward to. The idea of starting Redemption Treats happened innocently enough, and my mom dying ironically became the catalyst for starting it.

My dogs are everything to me as they are one of the only things that I have left from my mom. Redemption is something my mom and I would have done together if she were still here. We would always talk about little businesses to start. Unfortunately, I must settle for my boss from my internship who is now my business partner. He’s a boomer so it’s a struggle, but we make it work.

Starting a business has been both exciting and challenging. I love dogs, I love that our chews are a healthy part of a dog’s diet that feeds both their physical and mental needs. Similarly, this business and my dogs do the same for me – they make me feel better both mentally and physically. Our dogs can help redeem a shitty day or make a good day even better. They rarely pass judgement on us, maybe if we don’t give them enough treats, and they just want to be loved.

I wanted Redemption to reflect the fun side of life, since it’s so easy to get pulled into the dark side. So, after 18 months of getting everything ready for launch, we decided to position the brand a little bit spicier… I realized I’m pretty good at coming up with saucy and funny headlines and I think it sets us apart from all the barn, farm, family, cutesy, grandma’s apple pie dog treat brands that are out there. Our dog chew box is important to me because it’s something my mom would have bought for our dogs, even if she doesn’t approve of the saucy brand image…

Chews are essential for every dog’s diet, so why not get a monthly subscription with tons of variety and value. As a sneak peak, here are some of my favourite headlines we’re going to use in the future:

Don’t let you man’s package be the only meat your dog sees…
Doesn't your dog deserve as much pleasure as you do :-)
And this one’s for all the men out there:
Our chews last longer than you do

Anyways, thanks for reading this and I hope it didn’t make you too sad. Just kidding, I hope it made you sad enough to buy our chew box  And I hope it inspires you to be good to yourself and find the redeeming things in your life that bring you joy – like your dog and a scandalous chew box. Now, don’t disappoint your dog, go buy our subscription box.