Susan lives in Fond Du Lac, Wisconsin — a mid-sized town at the bottom of Lake Winnebago. Fond Du Lac is known for its Miracle Mile which has awarded at least two multi-million dollar lottery jackpots to lucky winners! In fact, Susan says that, to this day, people come from as far as Chicago and Milwaukee to buy lottery tickets in Fond Du Lac. Fingers crossed!
Susan has lived in Wisconsin her entire life. She has sold Avon for the past 15 years, following in her mother’s footsteps, and she loves it! She is also a Certified Nursing Assistant and provides care in her home to a 58 year old gentleman suffering from dementia. She makes enough to live comfortably and hopes one day to have a home in the country so that she can open the Animal Rescue Shelter that she has always dreamed of.
Needless to say… Susan loves animals, “so much.” Currently, Susan has 4 cats of her own (all rescues), she is fostering 2 cats, and she also has 2 birds! And, when she finds injured birds, turtles, rabbits or animals of any kind, she springs into action. She has even recently become a Vegan after she was introduced to Heartfelt Role Model, Heather, on Facebook. Susan says she always felt like a hypocrite eating meat but had just grown up that way. Heather’s #FeelNourished share of Vegan recipes on Heartfelt gave Susan the motivation to finally commit to giving up meat and meat by-products — which she says, “aligns more with her conscience.”
Susan feels happy most of the time, and always tries to be, even when she doesn’t. It’s a battle at times as she has suffered from the autoimmune disease, Fibromyalgia, for most of her life. She shares that she started developing symptoms as young as age 14, when she was an active high school cheerleader. She remembers being so tired that she couldn’t get out of bed. The pain and fatigue got so bad when she was in college, that she had to drop out, and she was never able to go back. Specifically, she suffers from chronic muscle pain and has such highly-sensitive nerve endings that if someone pinches her, it can be excruciating — “feeling like an electric shock” — and lasting for hours. She has become accustomed to living with Fibromyalgia, but says, “Some days are just so bad.”
Her disease is invisible to those around her, and she maintains a lovely disposition despite her struggle. She just, “wants to be like everyone else.” She rarely asks for help. She doesn’t let her illness define her. Most importantly, she doesn’t want to be a burden and “always soldiers on.” And, fortunately, on those really bad days, she has incredible support from her mom, her fiance Mike, and her best friend, Lynne — whom she is blessed to have met, couldn’t live without and who lives just three doors down! Having a chronic illness has made Susan incredibly empathetic, and she engages often in the Heartfelt community to pass her strength on to others.
When describing herself, Susan says, “I am passionate about fashion! I guess you could say I collect clothing and jewelry!” She loves Laurie’s clothing as, “it’s trendy, comfy and fabulous!” She says she is a fashion chameleon — dressing sweetly and demurely one day and then rocking it out the next day in a moto jacket and boots! However, a bohemian look is her all time favorite — enter the fabulous Laurie Felt “Stevie Knicks” blouse! She says she has all of the Laurie Felt denim silhouettes: baby bell, skinny, flares, boot-cuts….you name it, and since she was 14 years old, she has been an avid collector of jewelry — fashion jewelry, fine jewelry and even gorgeous emerald and ruby Victorian jewelry that she has inherited.
Susan, you inspire us so with your compassion, your strength and perseverance, and your empathy for animals and fellow humans. We are honored that you have chosen our community and are proud to have you as a Heartfelt Role Model.