I always knew I’d share my story, but I didn’t know when or how. I can finally say now that I am ready! The beauty of Limelife by Alcone has been a perfect platform in getting me to share “BEFORE” and “AFTER” transformations of beautiful women. But not all “BEFORE” and “AFTER” are beautiful, some are downright tragic and ugly.
Before April 3, 2015, I had a father everyone dreamed of; he was hardworking, humble, kind, and funny. My childhood was filled with wonderful memories of fishing, hunting, and boat riding with him (yes, I was the baby of the family and he secretly wished I had been a boy). As a single father, he was faced with challenges and questions like, “Can I shave my legs?” to which he replied, “Sure, they’re your legs!”. This reply led to many phone calls from all my eight-year-old friends’ mothers fussing him. Through high school, he was the cheerleader dad, the cool dad, and he trusted me. I made somewhat good choices, except for the time I drank all his beer from his packed ice chest and once he got offshore to fish he found that he had no beer. Fast forward through my blur of my college years and to me getting engaged. My dad went through this crying phase; I always hoped they were happy tears, but he would cry every time he saw me to the point where we were afraid he wouldn’t make it through my wedding! But of course, he suited up and was the most handsome man there, besides my husband of course.
I lived through wedded bliss and along comes our first born, Cameron, born November 16, 2013. At 3 a.m., I was in full blown labor and Chase calls Dad to let him know. Dad’s response was, “Alright, I’m coming, I just backed up my boat into the water at the Point to go fishing, I’ll be there within an hour!” If we had known that my labor would last 18 hours, he could have gone fishing three times. Dad loved his “Carmen” as he called her at first, then realized he could nickname her “Camo” so he could remember. From that day on we spent every Sunday at Popsie’s house where he would cook “SLAP” (Sunday Lunch at Popsie’s). So many wonderful memories were made on those Sundays with my entire family, we danced, we had parades, we ate, and laughed a lot.
On April 3, 2015, I packed up Camo, who was one at the time and we went to Loreauville for our annual family Good Friday Crawfish Boil. Dad was allergic to seafood but boiled them suckers anyway just to see his family happy. We stayed late that Friday, later than I would normally stay, I hugged him, and he put Camo into her car seat then I handed him a fish that Camo had made at daycare. My sleeping baby and I drove home to Lafayette and I had just put her down for the night when the phone rang. I looked and saw that it was my sister’s number, but it was my brother in law on the other end, “Ash, Popsie and Fee were in a bad car accident, Air Med is on the way, it doesn’t look good.” At first, panic did not set in, it was survival mode, I needed to get to the hospital. I was home alone with Cameron and I needed help, so I ran to my neighbor’s house and asked them to stay with my sleeping baby. I walked to my room to get my shoes when my phone rang again, “Ash, he didn’t make it”.
In that one second, the “AFTER” began. It felt like my heart, got pulled from my body, trampled on, and my whole world was shattered. My first thoughts were how was I ever going to live without him. I swore that I would never be able to smile, laugh, or feel any happiness ever again. That next week was a complete blur, all I remember is the headaches and the actual physical pain. Going through the motions of his very public death, being interviewed by reporters, the outpouring of the people at the funeral home, the flag at half mast, the high school lining the streets of Loreauville, and our entire community mourning as they saluted their Mayor as we drove to the graveyard.
Then reality came back, I was in no shape to be home alone, so I went straight back to work. I literally went through the motions, only waking up to take care of Cameron. We were building a house at the time and Chase was there until all hours of the night. On that Good Friday, Chase was at the new house because we only had a little time left on our rental contract, so I was alone that tragic day. I quickly learned that wine and Xanax would get me through the afternoon until it was time to go to bed. When it was time to move into our new home, I didn’t have those feelings of excitement like I should have but I didn’t want to stay in our old house either, I hated walking in front of the washing machine, which was the exact place I received that phone call and fell to my knees and the “AFTER” began.
In July 2015, we were fully moved into the new house, we made new memories, but nothing compared to my “BEFORE”. Here comes August and I was feeling very weird and had self-diagnosed myself with Lupus, thanks to WebMD. However, I was pregnant and instead of being ecstatic like I should have been, I was distraught. How could God expect me to carry another human being when I could barely carry myself. I was still grieving and there was no way this baby would survive in my broken body. How could he survive the Juvenile Criminal Court proceedings that stirred up every detail of my dad’s fatal accident? James Albert was born on April 12, 2016, nine days following the one-year anniversary of Popsie’s death. Life got real nuts after that, a newborn was a welcome distraction and I finally realized what God did! God gave us a new life, a baby with the soul of a wise, humble man. My “AFTER” finally started to resemble something of a life again.
August 2017 is when Limelife magically fell into my life and I accidentally started selling (yes, accidentally, I had no intention of selling it or ever having a team). God had this odd plan for me and it included a team of 300 men and women, and still growing. I now hold an Executive Level position with Limelife by Alcone. He gave me yet another reason to wake up and crave life. I feel beautiful and confident and I have the privilege of helping other women feel beautiful and confident through Limelife. Limelife has also blessed me with this squad of men and women who lift me up, pray for me, and show me more love that I ever knew was possible. Even though I still have my moments of “AFTER”, they come less and less, and the rest are filled with more life that resemble my “BEFORE”!