When the last round landed, everything looked quite like any kind of various other champion minute:
There was Jen Keddy, dropping to her knees in Tavares, Florida, shock knocking her to the sand. There was her not likely companion, Carly Kan, dropping with her, covering her 6-foot-4 colleague in a sandy, perspiring hug. There are smiles. Thousand- watt grins. Smiles that are booked for tooth paste ads as well as minutes such as this. There is an uncomfortable post-match meeting, one in which Keddy might not discover the words to effectively explain the minute.
Three weeks later on, she still could not discover the correct word. She leaned on unique when reviewing her initial AVP title, a 17-21, 21-19, 15-12 gain Geena Urango as well as Emily Capers in the AVP Central Florida Open last. For most, unique would not be incorrect. It was, certainly, the most not likely success in a period complete of them on the AVP Tour.
Keddy as well as Kan had actually never ever exercised with each other, not to mention contended as a group. When Kan flew to Austin, Texas, to obtain a couple of representatives in, she consumed something dreadful as well as was heaving her method with gastrointestinal disorder. So they exercised when, the day prior to they would certainly pair up in the preliminary versus Macy Jerger as well asKahlee York Neither had actually ended up greater than nine in a Pro or Gold Series occasion onthe AVP Tour So when Keddy joked with Kan, informing her that “We’re going to win,” no one, also themselves, took it all that significant.
So in numerous means, it was a little bit unique when they marched with the area, winning all 5 suits to declare their initial AVP titles. But when Keddy enabled herself to take supply of what these previous 5 years have actually consisted of, it appeared, truthfully, fairly regular.
Two years earlier, Keddy, the 2011 Big West Conference inside gamer of the year for Cal Poly, had never ever absolutely went after coastline volley ball. She played one young people competition in Santa Barbara, made the last, as well as had to surrender since her companion required to capture a trip; years later on, she played one featureless period as a fifth-year at Cal Poly.
Three years earlier, she had actually been residing in Missoula, Montana, a community that standards greater than 40 inches of snowfall each year as well as is most likely, Keddy joked, to host an occasion on snow than sand.
Four years earlier, Keddy might barely stroll, a sign of the radiation treatment that had actually wrecked her nerves as well as left her feet totally numb.
Five years ago?
Jen Keddy’s life had a single emphasis: “My one job,” she claimed, “was to survive.”
So is unique actually the appropriate descriptor for winning a coastline volley ball competition?
“Well, when you put it like that,” she claimed, and afterwards she chuckled, as well as it is the laugh of an individual that absolutely understands what it implies to live.
A growth the dimension of a football
In December of 2017, Jen Keddy was 2 months expectant. This offered a host of troubles, specifically that Keddy’s work as a specialist volley ball gamer needed the complete usage of her body, she had not been yet wed, as well as the connection she was in was defined by Kensie Gluekert, one of her friends, as “not the greatest.” It really did not aid, either, that Keddy was living in Munster, Germany, contending for USC Munster, as well as was one of 2 Americans on her group (the various other was Erica Wilson, an outside player from Arizona State).
She was puffed up, her tummy really did not really feel well, as well as she had a mass on her abdominal areas that looked, Gluekert claimed, “like she was about 22 weeks pregnant. There was a bump. It was wild.”
Gluekert, being expectant herself, was an excellent resource forKeddy When Gluekert suggested she see a medical professional, as well as do so right away, Keddy required, believing she would certainly obtain an ultrasound that could allow her understand just how much along she was, whether it was a young boy or woman, a due day, as well as a referral for when she would certainly have to quit playing volley ball.
It was a Tuesday.
“That will forever be seared into my brain,” Keddy claimed.
Because when she went to see the physician, as well as the photo of the ultrasound showed up on the display, it had not been a 22-week-old youngster they saw, however a growth the dimension of a football.
The infant she anticipated to see was, in reality, phase 4 ovarian cancer cells.
“Oh, great,” Keddy remembered reasoning, in her common propensity for exaggeration. It all occurred quick afterwards. Her German physician informed her that she required to obtain surgical procedure right away, just, due to the mingled medication in Germany, Keddy could not really obtain an visit for the surgical procedure up until the end of January.
By after that, she would certainly have likely been dead.
“I was like ‘Wait, what? You’re telling me this needs to come out now and I might be dead in a month?’”
Three days later on, she was on a trip house to California to see her daddy. The following day, Christmas Eve, she flew right intoMissoula On Christmas, Keddy as well as her mom, Susan, drove 5 hrs to see an ObGyn professional in Billings, that arranged an emergency situation surgical procedure on the 26th. At 3 the following early morning, the lump had actually been effectively eliminated.
“It was scary. It was weird,” Keddy claimed. “It was such a speedy of fly house, right here’s your household, surgical procedure, currently you remain in chemo.
“I had to shut everything off and I was simply there surviving.”
Dire as the scenarios were, there were, as Keddy claims, “a lot of God Things that happened,” because week. While the cancer cells had actually spread out to her lymph nodes, the physician just eliminated one Fallopian tube as well as one ovary, indicating that Keddy, must she live enough time, might still someday have kids.
The 2nd God Thing Keddy kept in mind is that, as a long-lasting professional athlete, as well as a kid at that, she was solid sufficient for physicians to suggest the most hostile program of radiation treatment, one that would certainly would have her in the health center for 6 hrs a day, virtually on a daily basis, for 5 months as the cancer-killing poisonous substance was infused right into her blood vessels by means of a port in her breast.
“Thumbs up,” Keddy informed her physicians. “Let’s do it.”
Gluekert come with Keddy for her initial day of chemo, as well as “as soon as the chemo was being pumped into her she would just turn so red and her eyes would water,” she claimed. “I’ll never forget that.”
Sometimes the therapies appeared harder for Gluekert as well as her mom than it did Keddy herself. There was an oblong strolling track near the cancer cells facility where Keddy got her radiation treatment. When Susan would certainly get her child, “she’d make me take her over there and we’d walk a mile,” she claimed. “And after that she would certainly go ‘OK, mom, we’ re going to have to do another.’
“It was just amazing to watch her fight.”
While Jen was bent on returning to volley ball, Susan would certainly maintain herself up all evening, competing down the darkest of Google bunny openings, looking into the stats of ovarian cancer cells.
“I’d make myself sick to my stomach, wondering and praying: ‘Why, God?’ ” Susan claimed. It is very easy to forgive Susan for examiningthe Almighty Already, she had to hide one child, that passed away in a deadly ATV mishap at the age of 16, while Jen’s daddy, Wayne, passed away of a cardiac arrest when he was just 65 on the early morning after Halloween.
Would she actually have to hide another?
There are pictures of that time duration of Keddy, from a female empowerment fire a buddy from senior high school did.
“She could have gone into a depressed state,” Gluekert claimed. Everyone else had. Yet there was Keddy, “holding herself with so much grace,” Gluekert bore in mind. “She was so strong, yet I was the one crying.”
Even with that said toughness, nevertheless, also Jen Keddy isn’t immune to the negative effects of radiation treatment. Here was a 26-year-old lady that would not also take Ibuprofen if she had a migraine, “and then of course I’m just bombarding my body with chemo.”
Soon, she started to really feel the results of neuropathy, to the factor that “I couldn’t walk unless I was watching my feet take steps because I could not feel my feet.” Headaches wrecked her mind. She was as hairless as the infant she when assumed she was having. And, of program, since this is Jen Keddy, she informed her physician that she had not been “going to let cancer prevent me from playing volleyball. I’m going to have a comeback season.”
“I literally could not not play volleyball,” Keddy claimed. “I had to figure something out.”
When she informed her physician of her strategies, he claimed that it was feasible for Keddy to return to the court, with one caution: She would certainly have to get on medication for the remainder of her life.
“I’m 26 years old, there was no way I’m doing that,” Keddy remembered reasoning. “There’s gotta be another way to get rid of this.”
Her choices, according to her physician, were 2: It was either medication or a wonder, as well as Keddy “just doesn’t really believe in putting that much into your body if it’s not necessary,” Gluekert claimed. “She thought there must be something else, something else out there to help her.”
Within a week, Jen Keddy had actually discovered her wonder.
The recovery power of water
There is a popular story in the Bible, amongst followers as well as non-believers alike, in the 5th phase of the scriptureof John It happens at a swimming pool in Bethesda, a swimming pool that was thought to have some kind of enchanting or magnificent power: When the water mixed, the initially to enter would certainly be recovered. It was bordered, after that, by all way of impaired– the blind, the paralyzed, the ineffective. An void had actually been trying to get involved in the water for 38 years. But he never ever could, as well as therefore continued to be paralyzed.
The little bit that the majority of keep in mind from this story– as well as, actually, the little bit that is planned to be born in mind– is what occurred following, when Jesus Christ come close to the guy as well as asked if he desired to recover. The solution was noticeable, therefore Christ informed him, merely, to get his floor covering as well as stroll.
And so he did.
That story is referred to in preachings as well as talks around the world. Centuries later on, millions of individuals from all societies as well as languages rely on the amazing power of Christ, pointing out that story as proof of their idea.
Jen Keddy counts on Christ.
She additionally counts on the recovery power of water.
In her look for an option to the life-long medicine her physician suggested, Keddy encountered a social media sites article from a buddy of hers. His daddy had actually been identified with cancer cells as well as, like Keddy, was experiencing radiation treatment. But he had actually discovered of something called Kangen Water, an item of Enagic International, which generates alkaline ionizers that, per its web site, changes “the tap water in your home into pure, healthy, electrolyzed-reduced and hydrogen-rich drinking water.”
In layperson’s terms, Keddy claims, “it is basically a defibrillator for water, returning it to how it’s supposed to be so our bodies can absorb it, properly hydrate, and detox all this stuff we’re putting into it.”
Necessity, it has actually been claimed, results in creative thinking. Keddy was eager to attempt anything.
“I had no idea what it was, I had no idea what it did, but when you’re on your death bed, you might as well try it,” she claimed. It had not been tough for her, or her mom, to justify the expense of the ionizer maker, which can vary north of $5,000.
“There’s no treatment,” Susan remembered. “Just in desperation, [Jen] said ‘Hey I’m probably not going to make it, I’m probably going to die, so at worst I blow five grand on this machine. I’m just going to go for it.’ ”
Keddy had just got her very own individual swimming pool of Bethesda.
Within a week, the negative effects of the radiation treatment went away. Her frustrations discolored. The neuropathy that numbed her feet was changed by the acquainted, today superb, feeling of shaking her toes.
Keddy, fairly essentially, grabbed her floor covering as well as strolled, returning, virtually right away, to the hard-charging, sports life she had actually lived for 26 years. She was back in the fitness center, raising daily. She telephoned her representative as well as informed him to discover her an agreement. Didn’ t issue where. She was prepared to play first-rate volley ball once more.
She additionally telephoned her oncologist, informing him that “You told me I was going to be on meds for the rest of my life! This is crazy! I just started drinking this water and it’s helping.”
“At this point I didn’t really know or understand why it was happening but I just knew that it was happening,” Keddy claimed. “He shot me down, didn’t want to talk about it, didn’t want to hear about it. He just was like ‘Nope, not possible.’ ”
It was– as well as still is– tough, some would certainly claim difficult, to clarify. If it appears unlikely, numerous would certainly concur. A Google look for Enagic water will certainly disclose that the 2nd concern customers most ask is if Kangen Water is a system. The web is swarming with allegations of Enagic, as well as Kangen Water, serving as a multi-level advertising and marketing plan, promoting unverified scientific research, raising their rates to compensate its ever-growing pyramid of salesmen. (Many of these items, it matters to note, are composed by Enagic’s rivals). You Tube video clips such as “Kangen Water EXPOSED” are not unusual, as well as the remarks area, like the majority of remarks areas, promptly declines right into a polarized battle of Kangen patriots as well as those on the side of Amanda Bobbett, the manufacturer of the video clip as well as a previous sales representative for Enagic.
“You can Google anything and find anything,” Keddy claimed. “Many articles you see on the internet about Enagic and Kangen come from people who haven’t tried it. People are also paid to write articles. Here’s what I always tell people: ‘There’s a bully on the playground picking on kids for whatever reason. We know, as adults, those bullies are the ones who are the most insecure and need the most validation; they’re picking on others because they want to make themselves look better and feel powerful.’ The competition spends their money and time bashing Enagic because it’s the only way for them to compare and sadly, they fool a lot of people … Enagic has been around for almost 50 years and is the only company with a legitimate medical grade certification.”
Even Gluekert, that liked seeing her close friend’s wellness being brought back, also if by such an unusual resource, was reluctant to assistance Jen’s brand-new water fixation.
“It was super hard for me because my husband is a pharmacist,” Gluekert claimed. “‘Are you sure you don’t want these things? We don’t want it to backfire on you.’ My husband was skeptical.”
Regardless of your point of view of Enagic’s company methods, or the honesty of Kangen’s insurance claims of what it does as well as just how it functions, right here are the realities: After completing radiation treatment, Jen Keddy might not feel her feet. She had the baldness pattern of a male two times her age. Headaches were constant as well as incapacitating. Until they weren’t.
“She’s drinking the water and she notices a change, and we start drinking the water because it’s at our house so why not? And Jennifer got stronger and stronger and healthier and healthier, and we were seeing effects in us,” Susan claimed. “It was amazing to watch her health and her growth.”
Look at Keddy currently, as well as what you will certainly see is a 6-foot-4 31-year-old lady with a head complete of hair, feet that can really feel every grain of sand, an AVP champion that was when identified with a possibly deadly cancer cells in its newest phases. She seldom gets ill, does not constrain, raises virtually day-to-day as well as trips the nation playing expert coastline volley ball.
This past December notes 5 years of being cancer cells cost-free.
Those, mystifying as they might be, are the realities.
“I am,” Keddy claimed with a laugh, “a water wizard.”
A strong action, an incident conference
Jen Keddy was still 2 years away, one at the minimum, from being a feasible companion for Katie Dickens (after that Lindelow). That’s what Dickens was informed, anyhow, by a buddy that had actually seen Keddy play a couple of times at a bar in Austin called Aussie’s But it’s not frequently a 6-foot-4 previous expert interior volley ball gamer makes her method right into the Austin coastline volley ball scene, as well as Dickens, perhaps the ideal protective coastline volley ball gamer in Texas, chose to see for herself.
She had actually seen Keddy previously, at a reverse co-ed competition at Aussie’s, though all she found out about Keddy was that she was high, had actually played volley ball previously, as well as was coming to be recognized around the neighborhood as the ‘Water Girl.’
When Keddy relocated to Austin, she did so as an independent supplier for Enagic, promoting her testament, which of others, consisting of Tampa Bay quarterback Tom Brady as well as the the NFL’s Seattle Seahawks, as proof of its results.
Keddy’s cancer cells?
The negative effects?
Hadn’ t been really felt considering that.
Within 6 months of completing radiation treatment in May of 2018 as well as running her water with her ionizer, Keddy had actually authorized to play interior once more in Lima,Peru When her agreement ended up as well as she returned house to Missoula, she took an excellent check out as well as understood that her agrarian community of 75,000 was no more large sufficient for her. She had a story to inform, as well as a character, as she claims, fit just for the one state where whatever is claimed to be larger: Texas.
Another occasion she classifies as a God Thing.
“It was like God said ‘Hey you should move to Austin,’ ” Keddy remembered. She was collection to action with her partner, as well as when that connection really did not exercise, it really did not sluggish Keddy in the the very least. She looked online, discovered a flatmate, as well as relocated there anyhow.
“The best thing that I ever did,” Keddy claimed.
And on her initial day in Austin, God proceeded the discussion, putting Keddy in line at the supermarket straight behind a consumer that was putting on an AVP hat. Keddy, never ever one to be timid of striking up a discussion, asked if she played volley ball.
“I moved there by myself, fully on a whim, just fully how I do things — no planning, reckless — and that’s what I did,” Keddy claimed. “I fulfilled this woman that played volley ball as well as I claimed ‘That’ s just how I’m going to make close friends,’ which’s what I did.
“I played sand volleyball the next day and from there, that’s how I met people and it was the best thing ever. They were just very welcoming, and I don’t know if it’s because I’m 6-foot-4, but they said ‘Hey, come play with us!’ I was shocked, because Austin, Texas? Sand volleyball? What?”
It started at Aussie’s, after that in the yards of people that had their very own exclusive courts. Word quickly spread out that there was a titan from Montana, as well as Dickens remembers reasoning
“Wait, for real, who is this girl? Who is this water girl everyone is talking about?”
Dickens still does not keep in mind precisely why she had not been playing an open competition at Aussie’s one weekend break in late 2020 or very early 2021. But she does keep in mind that she understood Keddy was having fun, which a buddy informed her not to trouble; Keddy was still 2 years far from being a feasible blocker at the AVP degree to which Dickens aimed. She went anyhow, as well as “I was marketed. I claimed ‘I don’ t understand what you’re discussing, she does not require 2 years. She’s extremely prepared.’
“We got her out to practice, just pickup, a few times. She was so legit from the beginning. You know how you can just tell someone is a good volleyball player from the beginning? Their platform is smooth, everything they do is controlled? That was Jen. So I asked her to go get coffee with me one day and if she would be up for training. I told her what a pro beach season might look like, what it costs, and she seemed interested.”
Dickens, a previous LSU standout, had actually played in 13 AVPs as well as certified two times, in Manhattan Beach as well as Austin in 2019. She understood what a totally committed period took, with routine technique, training, traveling, as well as the monetary ramifications that included it. Keddy, whose only experience on the coastline then had actually been arbitrary competitions at Aussie’s, was, she claimed, “still in the mentality of ‘I don’t really know what I’m doing, let’s just go play volleyball.’ It was a season for Katie and I to say ‘Let’s see if we can really do this.’ ”
And after that they did it, certifying in their initial AVP competition as companions, winning 3 straight suits in Atlanta to make the primary draw, where they would certainly end up nine. The rest of that trimmed 2021 period was unfortunate, as Keddy was hindered by an injury in Manhattan Beach, as well as Dickens by COVID inChicago But the factor was made: They might contend at the highest degree.
Or could they?
They were tremendously a lot more arranged in 2022 than they remained in 2021.
“We had a workout regimen, a personal trainer, a diet regimen, let’s train, have a set schedule,” Keddy claimed. “We got a bit more serious this year and had to set some higher goals because we qualified our first tournament. Definitely approached it with a lot more intention on my end.”
And after that they shed. Not by a lot, however sufficient to whiff on primary pulls in both Austin as well as New Orleans, both times shedding in the last suit by just 2 factors.
“When I say heartbroken,” Dickens claimed, “that was a low point.”
“When we lost in the qualifier in San Antonio by two points,” Keddy remembered, “it was a hard moment of ‘I want to quit.’ I was just sitting there thinking ‘I cannot do this.’ I will never forget this. I’m sitting there sulking, as one does after they lose, and a guy comes up to me and goes ‘It’s harder to change when you’re winning. Just remember that.’ I thought that was the most profound thing. It was like God sent him to me. My mindset flipped. I will never forget it. That is my favorite thing I’ve ever heard in my entire life.”
The losses created the required incentive for modification, as the 2 gotten approved for Fort Lauderdale, Atlanta, as well asManhattan Beach When the AVP routine was at first launched, nevertheless, the last Pro Series competition was arranged for mid-September inAtlantic City Keddy had a wedding celebration to participate in that weekend break, so Dickens played the qualifier in Virginia Beach withCarly Skjodt They ended up third, getting Atlantic City, as well as Keddy was great completing her year in August inManhattan Beach And after that the routine transformed– one last God Thing, probably?– as well as the AVP eliminated Atlantic City, subbing in Central Florida in very early December.
An not likely late-season collaboration
With Dickens currently gotten approved for Central Florida with Skjodt, Keddy was one of the most practical free-agent blockers offered. Carly Kan, it so occurred, required a blocker.
Kan, a previous standout at Missouri as well as Hawaii, had actually delighted in an occupation year herself by that factor. She had actually gotten approved for Austin as well as made back-to- back finals in Denver as well as Waupaca, where she defeated Dickens as well as Keddy to win her initial Tour Series title. Kan as well as Kaitlyn Malaney discolored a little bit afterwards, playing excellent however not wonderful. A collection of ninths as well as 13ths motivated a common choice to split for the last occasions in Huntington Beach as well as Central Florida.
Kan required a blocker with adequate factors to obtain her right into the primary draw of Central Florida.
Keddy was that blocker.
But Central Florida was, numerous assumed, a race for 2nd. Emily Capers as well as Geena Urango, as well as Corinne Quiggle as well as Sarah Schermerhorn, were thought about the hefty faves, while a touch of excellent however unverified as well as unskilled groups would certainly ditch it out behind them.
“That was kind of the vibe going into it,” Keddy claimed. “No one suspected us. Carly and I didn’t either, and I kept saying ‘We’re going to win, we’re going to win’ but nobody was thinking of us as a real threat.”
And why should they? Kan really did not also have Keddy’s contact number, resorting to straight messaging on Instagram to ask if she desired to play the occasion. The 2 methods they prepared for having actually were pared to a light offer as well as pass the day prior to the competitors, as Kan fought that spell of gastrointestinal disorder. Not that this hindered Keddy in the smallest.
“As soon as she picked me up, she said ‘Wouldn’t it be funny if the two most relaxed people won?’ Every day on Friday and then on Saturday, she would say it, ‘I’ve been manifesting this win for us.’ That even makes me believe more,” Kan claimed. “You always think you can win but truly believing it is a different level. The more we talked about it and the more she confirmed her belief in us is when things changed a little bit for me and my own mindset.”
Why not them?
Down went Kahlee York as well asMacy Jerger Down went Tiffany Creamer as well as Iya Lindahl.
They made Saturday.
Down went Skjodt as well as Dickens, in a close-fought suit that was chose in 3 collections.
They made Sunday.
Carly Wopat as well as Megan Rice, as well, dropped prior to them, as well as all of a sudden there were sixth-seeded Keddy as well as Kan, this Water Girl as well as a Hawaiian still recouping from gastrointestinal disorder, in the last versus the top-seeded group of Capers as well asUrango And after that they did the damndest point: Keddy as well as Kan won, returning from a 17-21 initial collection loss to case the following 2, 21-19, 15-11.
“It was her time. Her voice needed to be heard.”
“It was like watching the doors open for her,” claimed Susan Keddy, that streamed the suit from her cellar in Missoula.
“It was her time,” Dickens claimed. “I think her voice needed to be heard and her story needed to be seen.”
“She has spun cancer into a positive for her life,” Gluekert claimed. “She sees it as ‘God put me through this for a reason, and this is the reason.’ She’s just come cycle with taking what she was dealt as well as has actually made it right into a substantial favorable point. Some individuals could get involved in a clinically depressed state or assume my life is dreadful since I have actually had a lot take place however she relapses all of it as well as she’s doing far better than ever before.
“I didn’t get to watch the AVP, but once I heard that she had won, it just gave me chills and made me tear up. It’s what she was made to do and I’m just so glad she’s been able to live up her dream to do this.”
So perhaps Keddy was a two-year task besides. Two years after Dickens initial hired her, Jen Keddy is an AVP champion, the very first to come from the state of Montana.
Then once more, what’s 2 years of playing coastline volley ball contrasted to 5 years, to the month, of being cancer cells cost-free?
“Five years ago I was just trying to survive,” Keddy claimed. “Now here I am. There’s so many crazy things happening on my five-year anniversary that this is just such a God Thing. You just won an AVP championship and you’re about to be promoted in your job. It just all feels surreal. It’s all blending together in the last five years. The word of the year is just gratitude.”
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