In September 2018, my husband, Kevin, was diagnosed with Stage 3 Cancer. The doctors told us that the cancer was aggressive and so was the treatment. They explained to us the treatment would be long and it would be hard. My husband, who is a classically trained Chef, would have to eat through a feeding tube surgically inserted directly into his stomach to stay alive. Because of this, he would go on to lose 90 pounds. The doctors instructed us to pray. We were already putting that recommendation in practice and would surely continue.
I can remember the day I told my supervisor. She, along with many other team members and partners, cried with me that day. Shortly after, I met with my supervisor and a partner to discuss a working schedule that would give me the flexibility to care for my husband and still serve my clients as well. I was able to accompany Kevin for daily radiation over 40 days and nine weeks of chemo, several surgeries and dozens of doctor appointments. And all the while, I was able to meet client deadlines and continue to serve them as if life was normal. This was only possible through a true team effort where my team and leaders pitched in to assist when I needed it. This was a true commitment to our client promises, communication and trust.
Back in September, when the doctors gave us the news, of course we were nervous about the uncertainty ahead. Not only the uncertainty of the diagnosis but also how we’d manage in our daily lives. But I had confidence in my firm’s compassion because I have experienced it before. You see, HORNE also stepped up for me back in 2016 after my father had a stroke and my mom was no longer able to take care of herself and help my dad. I worked with my team and managers to navigate a plan that allowed me to move to North Alabama from Mobile. I was able to pack up all my equipment and buy a house around the corner from my parents. I was close enough to take care of my parents and still be able to meet all my clients’ needs during this time. I was so appreciative of all this. How everyone rallied around me to support me and the major life changes I was experiencing. In 2016, I thought nothing could top the level of kindness and heart of my team members, leaders and firm. But in September 2018, they proved me wrong.
One year later, my husband is doing remarkably well. He is back at work after being off for ten months. I can’t put into words how grateful I am to each and every person that played a role during our journey through cancer treatment. You have each made a difference in mine and my family’s life.
The fact that I could care for the people I love the most and have a firm to support me through major life changes is amazing. There are no words to describe it other than a true blessing.
About the Author
Regina Layton is full of gratitude for HORNE and our Wise Firm culture. She connects her purpose with showing her fellow team members that same compassion so many have shown her time and time again.