Happy 31st birthday, Emily!

Birthdays can be bittersweet around here as we love the chance to celebrate Emily and surround her with love and laughter, but we also simultaneously are forced to face the reality that each year her disease progresses and brings new obstacles for her to overcome.  In honor of her birthday, please consider donating $31 today so that you can bring us a step closer to our birthday wish for Emily- funding life-saving research so that we can ensure we have endless birthdays to celebrate with her.

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Emily, your friends near and far are sending countless hugs, love, and birthday wishes your way today! To help celebrate the day, some of your closest friends shared their favorite and special moments with you!

I loved getting to see Emily so many times this year. We had the best time at #inlestersinlove in Chicago last August! I also loved sharing an impromptu Penn reunion dinner at our favorite Audrey Claire on my way back from a work trip. Happy happy birthday Emily!! Love, Michelle Eber

Michelle 1

LizI think my favorite moment is probably Emily’s birthday last year (how fitting!) where we had glow sticks and candy and painted pottery before dinner (because we’re 30 now and can totally eat candy before dinner) and then we went to that AWESOME BYO where Emily had us all talk about our resolutions for 30 – which was such an awesome conversation – and so in line with her priorities in life – talk about the big things – and where we all wanna be in the future – and support one another along the way! Love, Elizabeth Fox

One of my favorite moments with Emily this past year is when we went to see the movie Train Wreck with our other best friend Jess. At the time, I was going through a tough time in my personal life. We went to dinner beforehand and had lots of great girl talk. Then, we saw the movie and belly laughed the whole time. In the car ride home, we sang along to “Fight Song” at the top of our lungs. It was the perfect night to lift my spirits. It made me so grateful to have such an amazing best friend who I can always laugh or cry with! Happy birthday Em! Love you! Love, Lisa FelkinsVal

I’m always struck by Emily’s inner and outer beauty. I feel so proud and fortunate to have her as a friend. She always offers sage advice. Her strength of spirit, and mind is truly inspiring. Emily is truly present in each moment. It’s hard to pick a favorite moment with Emily because there have been so many great ones. I think watching her convince the waitress at Pod to get a flu shot may be up in the top 10. Love, Valerie Braunstein

My favorite time with Emily this year was getting to introduce her to Sydney. It was really special for Emily, who is my oldest friend (we met almost 29 years ago!), to meet my daughter for the first time. I think this picture really captures the day, and every time I see it, I laugh! Love, Megan Chasnoff

Megan

One of the many incredible things about Emily is how much she cares about and loves her friends and how great she is Ariel 2at expressing this and making us feel the love. I recently had a baby and I remember the first time I saw Emily after announcing my pregnancy. We were on Long Island for a friend’s wedding and as soon as we were both settled into the hotel she came to my room to say hi and catch up. She was so genuinely excited for me and I remember she asked a million questions (in a good way!) about my pregnancy and how I was feeling. While I am lucky to have lots of wonderful friends who supported me during my pregnancy, none made me feel so truly cared about and free to express all that was going on with me as Emily did. We also shared a lot of quality pretend-like-you’re-talking-and-laughing time for photos taken at another friend’s bachelorette weekend in New Orleans this summer. Adorable (if I do say so myself) photos attached. Love, Ariel Greenstein

My favorite memory of Emily from the past year is when she signed the ketubah at my wedding. I couldn’t feel luckier to have such an incredible friend in my life who is always there for me, even if we live half way across the country. Every day that I see the ketubah on the wall, I think of Emily and the enormous impact she has had in my life. I’m so glad that I will have that visual reminder every single day for the rest of my life. Happy birthday Em!! I love you beyond. Love, Amy Lester

Amy

Most of my memories of Emily from the last year include her big smile – I feel like every time that we get together, she makes a point to always check in on me, and ask how everything is going in my life. I know that at any time she has 100 balls in the air, and yet she always remembers when something is happening with me, and shows that she cares. On her birthday I want her to know how much I CARE about her! Can’t wait to celebrate another year of adventures, triumphs, and book club meetings 🙂 Love, Danielle Altares Sarik

I feel very lucky that Emily and I shared so many fun times together this year, but one very special memory with Emily is when she taped a national TV show, The Doctors! Sitting backstage and watching Emily shine as she poured her heart EKG and 31st cakeout talking about Emily’s Entourage filled me with such joy. She is such an unbelievably amazing person and her presence lights up a room (and a TV!) making it impossible not to smile when she is around. I’m so excited to continue creating incredible memories together! HAPPY 31st!! Keep the candles coming! XOX Love, Marissa Freeman

When sharing some major news with Emily this year, in truly Emily fashion, she responded not only with overflowing excitement but with a million specific questions. Emily is always curious to know every detail, no matter how small. This continues through in our regular conversations and makes me feel like Emily is always by my side and part of my every day, despite being across the country. Love, Beth Shapiro Lavin

 

It was really hard to try and pick one moment that stands out from the rest- just in this past year I watched Emily on almost every major news channel, I watched her speak at the White House, I attended birthday parties and baby showers and weddings with her, we shared casual dinners, and energizing Emily’s Entourage meetings. While I have enjoyed to the fullest all the social and carefree times we have shared together, there are two other special moments that come to mind. In the past year I attended two Emily’s Entourage Research Symposiums. Even though I struggled to understand some of the science that was presented, they were true meetings of the minds that I really wanted to be present for. Something that stood out to me was how incredibly bright Emily shined on both those days. On both occasions, she stood in front of a room filled with some of the country’s- and world’s, most well respected and valued scientists and researchers. She spoke eloquently, and she spoke from the heart, as she spoke about her life and her disease and her hope and fears for the future. Quite frankly, her presence, her entire being was a source of motivation for everyone in the room. You could see how much she touched every single person, and how everyone truly heard her, and internalized the sense of urgency and passion that she conveyed. It felt magical to me. Love, Jessica Rutstein Lazarus

We love you, Emily! Here’s to many many more!!!

31st cake

 

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