Owl Be Sweatin'®

Strength Series: Emily's Story

Mallory DeBraComment

Owl Be Sweatin’ is honored to officially announce The Owl Be Sweatin’ Strength Series!

Cancer has many faces – your mother, father, sibling, child, neighbor, co-worker, friend or even a complete stranger.


Owl Be Sweatin’ nominated three women who’ve displayed the utmost courage, bravery and strength and who have dealt with their cancer in the most inspirational, positive-spirited way you could ever imagine.

The Owl Be Strength Series was born to GIVE FORWARD and to encourage people, who want to help (because people do genuinely want to help, but don’t know how to contribute).

Over the next few days, Owl Be Sweatin’ will be tapping into the personal lives and sharing the stories of Megan Bailey, Emily O’Reilly and Kelli Woodstock. Their stories are truly touching and hope they inspire you to join us in making a difference by helping out these women and their families and ease this extremely difficult chapter of their lives.

Owl Be Sweatin’ has created a custom headband for each of these women, now available for purchase.

Owl Be Sweatin’ will be donating back $7 of every OBS Strength Series headband sold to each of these women’s personal funds to help them with all of their medical expenses.


Emily’s Fund

What are you waiting for? GIVE FORWARD now and represent your OBS Strength Series with pride and hope.

Emily’s Story [Creating Hope with Survival]


On Saturday, June 7 I felt a tumor on my right side by my rib cage. I went to my doctor that week and they did not know what it was and they sent me for a CT scan. That week I  had several more tests including a liver  biopsy and the following Monday, June 16 I got the call that it was cancer, Adenocarcinoma. This was later determined to specifically be Cholangiocarcinoma which is liver cancer of the bile ducts. I was considered inoperable because the cancer was over about 85 % of my liver.

I received this diagnosis when my twin girls were 10 1/2 months old and I had just finished breast feeding a few months earlier and my son was 2. Six months prior to this diagnosis I had just returned to work from my maternity leave with the twins. I was working two days a week at my therapy practice and the other days watching my kids as well as working from home as needed in order to manage my practice and clients. It was a juggling act but little did I know that I also had liver cancer. I have not been able to see clients which has been difficult because I love what I do but it is taking all that I have in me to take care of myself with all of these symptoms, and side effects. 

My biggest job has become treatment for this cancer. After three rounds of chemotherapy last summer, 2014, I was accepted into an aggressive plan for surgery which brought risks but way more hope. Unfortunately the cancer spread to the bones in my spine in November, 2014 and stopped the therapy plan which was my largest hope for a cure that we knew of. It was devastating. It spread to more vertebrae in my spine in December and then due to my body not being able to tolerate the chemotherapy I started a clinical trial chemotherapy drug on December 28th, 2014. This trial drug shrunk some of the liver cancer and I felt much better for months.

Recently, there have been some complications and additional spread just last week, May 2015 to my bones in my spine so I'm going to begin radiation and determine my next course of treatment with my oncologist this week. My family and friends have helped push me through this and love has been keeping me going. My faith is guiding me and I'm doing all I can and giving all I have to live and get through this for my young children and family.