“M OF HOPE,” A HEALING BOUTIQUE FOR CANCER PATIENTS, OPENING IN MIDDLEBURG HEIGHTS

m-hopeMeaghan Earley, a longtime resident of Middleburg Heights, is opening a boutique called “M of Hope.” The boutique is to help anyone who faces the battle against cancer with a one-stop shop for products they will need as they go through treatment. “M of Hope” will also provide a highly personal, compassionate touch to meet special product needs as well as support.

The store, located at 7535b Pearl Road in Middleburg Heights, will have a soft opening this Saturday, February 14, and a grand opening the last weekend of February.

Meaghan was on her way home from work when she received a phone call from her mother. The phone call was bad news, a call she will remember the rest of her life. Their doctor had diagnosed her mom with cancer. Meaghan said that immediately she personally felt terrified, alone and helpless. She said she could not even imagine what her mother was feeling.

Instead of just feeling down and vulnerable, she decided to take action. Meaghan decided that she was going to stand by her mom’s side and give her all her love, support and encouragement. This is when Meaghan developed the idea of what she now calls the “Chemo Countdown Bags.”

Her mom had seven long sessions of chemotherapy to complete.  Meaghan’s goal was to distract her during that time and get her thinking about happy and empowering thoughts while she received  each treatment. Hence, for each session her mom would receive a special numbered bag that Meaghan had put together. The numbers on the bags were purposely included, so her mom could keep remembering that there would only be a few sessions left to complete the treatment. In the first bag Meaghan asked friends and family to write her mom letters about joyful and memorable experiences they had shared together. Her mom read them while she received the chemotherapy. She made it through the first round and the special bag made the worry, fear and dread more bearable.

Megan continued to make bags for each chemotherapy session.  Doctors, nurses and staff loved Meaghan’s idea and continuously checked in to see what was placed in the next healing bags.  The “M of Hope” boutique will be selling her “Chemo Countdown Bags” along with a large array of products that will help anyone experiencing cancer.

Some of the products in the boutique will be specialty soaps, lotions, unscented shampoos, lip balms and Biotine toothpaste that are hard to come by in regular stores.

The boutique also plans to eventually offer a variety of support groups for those needing to talk to someone who has walked in their shoes. “M of Hope” will be embracing women who will need chemo haircuts and they plan to support Art Therapy works of art created by survivors by placing new pieces on their walls monthly.