Haymakers for Hope
We're excited to share an inspiring story written by a member of the Lovepop family. Hannah is participating in Haymakers for Hope whose mission "is to knockout cancer the only way we know how, by literally fighting for a cure."
Hannah is Lovepop card engineer Joe's girlfriend and a fixture around the office. She's been an amazing Lovepop supporter since Joe joined the team.
Read on and learn more about Hannah's story.
Designing a pop-up card is even harder than it looks.
Those intricate folds and intersections take a lot of brainpower to wrap your head around, even if you have a background in Architecture, as I do. So why did I decide to design a pop up card?
It started with a tumor. I was 17, and up until that point cancer had just been a scary word that never really touched my life. And when I heard that my cousin, then 18, had a tumor growing on her cervix, I maintained hope that cancer still wasn’t going to affect us.
In my young and optimistic mind, that tumor was benign; it was just a harmless mass that could be removed, it wasn’t going to be a big deal, and she would be fine. She had to be. She was family, she was one of my best friends, and she was my idol. She would be fine.
I was wrong.
For the first time in my life, I was seeing firsthand what it could do to a person. I saw a girl, who was supposed to be starting her life as a young adult, ripped away from normalcy and thrown into a whirlwind of hospital visits, surgeries, chemotherapy… I watched a young woman face hell on earth with a brave face, determination, and grace, despite the fact that many around her were losing hope.
She never lost hope, and neither did I. Cancer may have butted its head into our lives, but I knew that she would win this fight.
This time I was right. Jenn has been cancer free for 6 years now.
My family has since been involved in a lot of fundraising events for cancer research, care and awareness. Our hope is that our efforts can help others hold on to hope, and beat cancer like my cousin did. That is why I am stepping into the ring to box for Haymakers for Hope.
Haymakers for Hope is a non-profit that raises money for cancer research, care, awareness and survivorship by giving everyday people the opportunity to step into the ring, and literally fight for a cure.
All of the money raised at their numerous events goes towards “knocking out cancer.” As a boxing enthusiast, who, on a whim, bought a 20 class pass for a MMA gym through Groupon back in January 2015, I felt like I was meant to do this fight. I knew it would be a grueling training process(and believe me, it has been!), but I also knew that helping others knock-out cancer the way my cousin did would be one of the greatest things I could do.
When I first got the email this past May letting me know that I had been selected to be a participant in this year’s Belles of the Brawl event at the House of Blues this October, I felt every emotion from uncontainable excitement to “oh man, what the hell have I done?” I knew I was going to need to lose weight. But I could deal with that. I knew I was going to need to train harder than I’ve ever trained. I could deal with that, too. I was going to get punched in the face, A LOT.
Bring it on. I was going to need to raise $5,000. Cue the nervous lump in my throat.
I was brainstorming with my boyfriend, Joe, a Lovepop Card Engineer, on a road trip to NYC. Fundraising is arguably the most important aspect of this fight, and I had no clue how I was going to do it.
I listed ideas on how to reach my fundraising minimum, and ultimately surpass it, when Joe suggested I design a boxing themed pop-up card through Lovepop, and work out a way to have a portion of profits go toward my fundraising goal.
I instantly had an image in my head of the card I wanted. I’m crafty, a good sketcher, design oriented and have a lot of experience with creating things in 3 dimensions—how hard could this be?
As it turns out, really hard.
Bear in mind that the majority of my free time is spent at the gym. I’m training 5-6 days a week, sometimes taking multiple classes a day and staying until 10:30pm, and, as I expected, getting punched in the face… a LOT.
That posed the first, and most difficult challenge. When was I going to find time and/or energy to design this card?! During a lunch break I sketched out a rough view of the inside of the card, and sent it to Joe, who told me it should be a straight-forward card to build.
I think I had a feeble idea of how the different pieces would intersect, but to this pop-up card newbie, nothing about building that ring was straightforward. Luckily I had Joe to help me.
The next challenge was the boxers themselves. How detailed did I want to make them? Would they be women or men? Should they be wearing head gear? Would they be a solid color, like Rock ‘em Sock ‘em Robots, or would their gear be applied in a different color?
I decided to go with applied gear, and chose to use men with for simplicity-sake, considering they could go shirtless, meaning one less element to be drawn, cut, and glued into place. The ring and the boxers had been designed, which meant the inside of the card was done, right?
I needed to add more details, which ended up being a cheering crowd, and some embellishments that include a tiny little pair of boxing gloves. Who would have thought that it would be so hard to come up with ideas for extra details to a boxing card, all while maintaining the space to write a greeting on the inside?
Then there was the cover. I had a simple idea, or so I thought. A pair of boxing gloves should be easy to draw, right? Wrong again. I needed to draw the outline of the gloves in such a way that all of the detail pieces would remain attached, which is much more difficult than I thought it would be. After a lot of trial and error, and again, some help from Joe, I finally had my cover designed.
After a few minor adjustments, some card engineering, and prototyping on Joe’s end, my design that had popped into my head that first day was now popping out of a card in front of me.
The prototype was even better than I could have imagined, thanks to Lovepop. I have always appreciated the craftsmanship and skill required to design Lovepop’s incredible cards, but now, after having been involved in the process myself, I am in awe.
Working with Lovepop to come up with a design that will help me achieve my fundraising goal has been a privilege, and I’m extremely grateful for this opportunity. With their help, we are one step closer to knocking out cancer, and that’s a pretty awesome thing.
Never give up hope.