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Enjoy diverse perspectives from West Michigan women.

This weekend, my 11-year-old son's baseball team won their final tournament of the season. The weather was beautiful, our hotel was great, and my son got a double and a made a nice catch in the outfield. It was one of those Michigan summer weekends that you just don't want to end. But what made it great wasn't just about the victories and perfect weather.

I've been pretty fortunate to have worked for some great people over the years, and I've definitely learned something from every single one of them—even the seventy-something woman at one of my first jobs out of college, who chain-smoked nonfilter Pall Malls in the office directly next to mine and was worthy of admiration for building a successful ad agency, despite her era.

It used to be part of the American Dream to get married and buy the perfect house with a white picket fence. But who says you have to be married to make that purchase?

It's been just over a year since I was diagnosed with stage 2 breast cancer.

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