Short Name. Big Meaning.

4 02 2011

Art by Danielle Neilson, my niece!

I have an idea. And I need help.

These two sentences, uttered consecutively, are always enough to give my husband, Don, that deer-caught-in-the-headlights look. And justifiably so. After all, he’s got experience — he lives with me.

But this time, I’m asking you.

I have an idea. And I need help.

I know what I want to accomplish, but I’m not exactly sure how to go about it.

But I’m quite sure there’s someone out there who does.

This past Christmas, I gave my sister-in-law, Carrie, a sterling silver bracelet. A Sister Bracelet, inscribed with various phrases about what it means to be a sister, to share that bond.

A few days after my diagnosis, Carrie stopped by. She rolled up her sleeve and showed me that she was wearing the bracelet I’d given her. Then she held her arm up and declared, “And I’m not taking it off until you’re in remission!”

And she hasn’t. Every time I see her, I call, “Wrist check!”

She dutifully rolls up her sleeve to prove that, yes, indeed, she is still wearing that bracelet.

There’s positive energy flowing from that bracelet 24 hours a day, whether Carrie is near or far. I can feel it.

There’s something else Carrie began repeating to me after my Stage 4 diagnosis.

“You will win this battle because you’re Amy,” she said. “Amy. Short name. Big meaning.”

Now, everytime I see her, there’s an immediate “Wrist Check,” followed by Carrie’s articulation of “Amy. Short Name. Big Meaning.”

I was mulling over all of these pieces as I lay in bed last night, my little boy snuggled up next to me, when it came to me.

I envision a rubber-band bracelet, like the ones that are so often associated with a cause. Yellow, because that’s my favorite color. I want the printing to read: “Amy. Short Name. Big Meaning,” along with my blog address:

It will serve a dual purpose. First, I’ll be able to feel all of that positive energy flowing toward me in the commitment made to wear a bracelet til I’m in remission. Second, people who wear the bracelet will have an opportunity to share my story, my struggle — which is everyone’s story, everyone’s struggle — with everyone who asks about it.

I need to find a way to produce and distribute these bracelets. And I want everyone out there supporting me to have one, to put it on, to vow not to take it off until I’m in remission.

It’s a You do your part. I’ll do mine. sort of proposition.

But first things first. How would I find a place that could make these bracelets for me, and how would I get them to my supporters?

Do tell.

— Amy Rauch Neilson




26 responses

4 02 2011
amy fox

hi amy,
i don’t know you but have been following and praying for you. you can email my friend at i think she can help you.


4 02 2011
Gene Rooks

Great idea. Make the lettering bright pink, on the yellow background. I don’t have expertise for creating or producing, but I’m in for one. Gene

4 02 2011
Cindy Straub

When my son was a junior in high school, one of his best buddies developed an auto-immune disease and was in the hospital over a year. We had tie-dyed bracelets made just like you are talking about with his name on them. Let me see if I can find out where we got them.

4 02 2011
Mary Goedert

Amy….those bracelets are easy to custom order…. I was an elementary principal, and we did it all the time. Oriental TRading company is one such place, but there are tons of other sites…. We also have a place in SAginaw that does trinkets and promotions….called Hayes Specialty.

I would GOOGLE trinkets, or prizes, or promotions.

How to get them to people….do you have a FB page?

4 02 2011
Amy Rauch Neilson

I do have a fb page: Amy Tina Rauch Neilson. But how would that help me to get bracelets to people?

4 02 2011
Anita Kelly

You can buy anything online. I volunteer to deliver them – maybe it would work out to have a friend in each county/ area who could serve as a pick up point or sub-distributor, and I could deliver to those people. (I’m sure you’ve got hundreds of people who want them…BECAUSE YOU’RE AMY!)

4 02 2011
Gayle Waldrup


I would wear one to support you. I haven’t seenyou in awhile, but I have always beent there. Just this week, I found out that my sister-in-law has breast cancer, and will have to have surgery next week sometime.

You can and you will do it!!! “Amy. Short Name. Big Meaning.”

4 02 2011

What a great idea!!!! I’m in, for whatever. YOu just tell me what.

4 02 2011
Linda Stanislawski

Great idea! and wearing the bracelet would remind us to pray for you more often!

4 02 2011
Paul Vachon


I’ll be happy to be part of the distribution chain. I live in Oak Park and can run a circuit in the South Oakland area.

4 02 2011

Try there. I just googles cause bracelets. There were more but that was right at the top.

4 02 2011
Pam Wright

Amy, every marketing products company makes them. I’ve used Marco lately.

That doesn’t help you get them to those who care about you, unless you want to buy a bunch and have to deal with delivery.

Cafe Press would have been perfect, but they don’t have wrist bands.

Maybe someone else knows of something like Cafe Press that has wrist band!

Thinking of you.

4 02 2011

I did a little web research and the best deal I found was a site where you can get 250 yellow wristbands, debossed collor filled (hot pink)…that will read “Amy. Short Name. Big Meaning” on the front and on the back. Total cost approximately $200. Only catch is the order takes about 30 days to deliver (unless you pay a higher fee). The website is: Check it out.

I will donate the first $100 to this cause

4 02 2011
Jacquelyn Lynn Clement

Remember you now own … better your own url than the wordpress one for long-term reliability … we’ll get that url up and pointing to your blog soon.

4 02 2011
Mollie Finch

I have not and will not take off the bracelet u gave me Tuesday until you are cured. This I promise you my dear friend. Love you! xoxo

4 02 2011
Therese Niemi

I ordered 200, yellow bands with pink lettering. I’ll received shipment in 10-14 days. That gives us a little time to figure out distribution. I’ll forward you the confirmation info when I receive it.

4 02 2011
Amy Rauch Neilson


Yes, let’s figure out a plan. So many loose ends — let’s pow-wow and think this through…

5 02 2011
Therese Niemi

Yeah, that pretty much describes me! I was thinking we could set up a link to an ebay store via your blog. They should be pretty cheap to ship out. The actual cost should be between $1-$2 per bracelet, including shipping. That’s not bad! My daughter’s Girl Scout troop could help out too. We’ll keep hammering this out!

4 02 2011
Karen Coulier-Awe

Hi Amy, Kevin Watson just sent me your blog. I know you will reach your quota just as we reached Shannon’s $100,000 goal at the BFAC fundraiser last year. I sent your blog on to so many people who supported Shannon and I. You have her strength and determination and she was (and still is) an inspiration to many. You go girl…Kick cancers butt and I will see you going down that runway again on 9/18/2011. I will bring a crowd to cheer you on! Karen Coulier-Awe (Proud mother of Shannon Watson)

4 02 2011
Amy Rauch Neilson

I am so touched and honored to hear from you and to have your support. I told Kevin at last weekend’s BFAC Committee Meeting that when I saw Shannon’s handmade necklace and bracelet up for auction last September, I dug my heels in and kept bidding til I got them! I was NOT going to go home without them! And each time I wear them, I think of Shannon stringing all of those beads together, one by one. It makes me feel like she is with me.

4 02 2011

i googled and found:
i’m sure there are many others. There will be an initial cost depending on how many are purchased at one time — less per piece the more you order. From this company, if they are ordered today by midnight there’s a sale on and you get 100 free with orders over 100. Debossed (prices on the link) are their least expensive. I thought glow-in-the-dark could be cool, but they’re the most expensive. They have a 22 character limit front and back (both of your phrases are longer). There’s a few penny cost per piece if you have debossed on BOTH front and back. And there’s even a few penny cost/piece if you have something on the inside. If ordered today, they should be received by Feb. 24.

As for distribution, maybe people could send a self-addressed, stamped envelope. I, too, would be glad to help with distribution. And sign me up for wearing an AMY. And I ‘m not so partial to yellow. But for you… 🙂

Still praying for you every day. Thinking of you sister. Hugs.

4 02 2011
Patti Moyer

Amy great idea! Would wear one and could also help in delivery if need be. The self address envelope is also a good idea. I had such a good time last weekend at dinner with you and your sisters, we have to do it again soon!! Praying for you daily!

5 02 2011

Sounds like a great idea Amy!! Marybeth and I want a bracelet to wear!!! We could always pick up some for your “Peeps” in our area if you wanted us to. (Really want to see you anyway!) They could stop here and pick them up. Mailing you a stamped self addressed envelope seems like a good option too. I’m sure no one would mind paying for the bracelet so the cost is covered as $1 or $2 per braclet will add up quickly for a quantity!

6 02 2011
Sunny Stripes-O'Connor

Amy. Short name. Big meaning. If I were cancer, I’d be very afraid.

7 02 2011
Sherri Novis

Hey – what do you think about “Amy. Short name. Big meaning. What’s yours?” Enrolling people in the magic they are, through the magic you are?

7 02 2011
Sherri Novis

Like a call to action – to support you, and realize they can be the difference too!

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