Recovery means something different for everyone. It could be that you’re recovering from an injury or simply that you’re taking care of yourself after a workout. In this series, we talk to people in our community about how they recover—plus, what their fitness routine looks like, when they feel most alive, and more. Next up, entrepreneur Jennifer Smith. 

Jennifer Smith describes herself as a serial entrepreneur. Her latest venture: an office products company that she grew from a staff of 21 to over 350. While she was born and raised in Minnesota, she loves to travel and has “been all over the place.” 

In 2018, Smith was diagnosed with the most aggressive and rarest kind of breast cancer—and ended up being the 1% of all breast cancer patients that get a very rare case of leukemia from the treatment. Recently, she arrived home after an eight-month stay at a hospital in California where she was able to get a transplant from her brother via a clinical trial. “I’m literally a miracle case,” she says. Here, her recovery story: 

On receiving a serendipitous package:

When I got home from the hospital, I was feeling really good. But, I fell when I was out taking my dog for a walk. I got bruised all over because my platelets are really low which means I bruise easily. 

Once back inside, I opened a package that had just arrived from Christina [Mace-Turner, founder of Mab & Stoke] and it’s this Recovery Cream. I thought: “Well, let me try this.” It really, really helped. I was like: “Oh my God, Christina, I love you.” I put it on the bruises and they didn’t hurt at all. 

There’s a hundred side effects that you can get from all this radiation and chemo. But the worst one for me has been neuropathy. So I said, “Well, why not put it on my feet and my hands?” And that seemed to work amazingly, too. It’s a wonderful product and I think Christina’s mission and her values are incredible, which just makes it all that more rewarding that for somebody who’s trying to do good in the world, their product actually works. 

On her morning rituals:

The first thing that I do when I wake up, and I’ve been doing it for about a year now, is Snap [using Snapchat] two of my friends a gratitude Snap. Even when I was really, really sick and could do nothing else, I still was grateful and I did my Snaps. We say three things we’re thankful for and three things that we want to accomplish for the day. We hold each other accountable and it’s really awesome to just be grateful. And I am really grateful that I am here. 

Afterwards, I do a meditation (I use the Deepak Chopra app) and a scripture reading. My faith has helped me get through this tough time.

When I’m done with all of that, my husband gets home with coffee and something to eat. Then, I get up and I exercise. The exercises are, for most people, nothing, but for me they’re really hard. Then I take a shower and I put on the Recovery Cream. I usually reapply the Recovery Cream in the afternoon and I also have a neuropathy-specific cream.

I didn’t have a routine of wellness before and I think it’s really been beneficial to my mental health.

On living in the moment:  

Being an entrepreneur, I’m very futuristic. I’m always thinking about what’s next and how to keep the business going and all of those sorts of things. What I’ve really had to try to do is live in the moment. That wasn’t something that came easy for me. One of my favorite quotes that I try to live by is: “Don’t let tomorrow take up too much of today.” When I remember that, I feel most alive.

On her message for others in any sort of recovery:  

Owning a company, my days were 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., and I ran hard for years. You have to remember to take time for yourself and make sure that whatever your recovery routine is, you keep up with that. And again, just remember to enjoy the moment that you’re in, whatever you’re doing.

What I Tried:

Medication
Recovery Cream
Neuropathy Cream
Gratitude practice
Daily rituals
Meditation
Scripture reading
Mab Tabs

What Worked:
All of the above

Pro Tip: A gratitude practice is a research-backed way to improve wellbeing.

Pro Tip: A 2020 study found that balancing living in the moment with “proactive coping” (essentially, planning to reduce future stress) is the formula for weathering daily stress sans negativity.

Pro Tip: Daily routines can help improve stress levels and your health, according to Northwestern Medicine.

Recovery Cream is a full spectrum plant-based hero designed to be used post-workout or whenever you need relief from aches or soreness. Smooth Recovery Cream over everything from fatigued muscles to tight shoulders and aching backs, and enjoy its lightly woodsy scent. This highly absorbent cream combines traditional botanical infusions, aromatherapy and key concentrated extracts to create a next level soother you won’t want to live without.