Stronger Than StoneKate – Strength, Tenacity, Resiliency, Advocacy & Gratitude Posted By admin on September 21,2023 “Tomorrow is a new day. How lucky are we to get to try again?” – Kate McGoff Meeting Kate over Instagram and speaking with her, I found myself inspired and encouraged by her positivity and resiliency. And through our conversation, I realized Kate and her story would inspire others as well. I am so grateful she is willing to share. Strength Everyone has their hardships and challenges, it’s a part of life, however overcoming these challenges with strength and gratitude is difficult. Kate became a single parent at a young age, giving birth to her son Max. When all her friends were finishing up college and planning their career life, she found herself back home with her parents, pregnant and alone. The father of her child, with whom she dated all through college, was suddenly out of the picture leaving Kate to face not only being a single mom, but also going through her first pregnancy by herself. With her parents by her side, she still struggled as her friends could not relate which added to her loneliness. Once her son arrived, Kate transformed that loneliness turned into a powerful love. “Being a single mom was the hardest but most rewarding thing I have ever done and will always be one of the most important chapters of my life. While it was the hardest and most exhausting chapter, it made me who I am and more importantly, showed me just how strong I am.” Kate explains that her loneliness was not just about being physically alone, it encompassed a tremendous void mentally as well; having no one with whom to share in her pregnancy, coparenting, child support, legal matters, etc. Aside from her parents, who supported her greatly, she found that many people just didn’t understand her situation. “It was difficult to find someone to listen.” So, Kate took action and created an online support group for single moms. A group for women to meet other women dealing with similar hardships she was facing. She created a ‘safe space’ for support. Her support group on Facebook is called the ABM Single Mom Squad and offers a place for women to meet other single moms, ask questions, and find community. Today, though her life has changed, Kate remains an advocate and continues keep her DMs open. She uses social media to be a beacon for others facing the many challenges of motherhood. Tenacity Kate finds Kyle and the rest is history… Well, not really. COVID hit, and like so many of us, Kate’s dream wedding was postponed numerous times until she and Kyle decided to forgo their big family wedding and exchange vows in her grandparents backyard on the Inter-coastal of Palm Beach — the same place her grandparents were married. The solution was a beautiful one but not without its challenges, as their family and friends could not attend. One of the most difficult absences for Kate was not having her father there. He was in the ICU during COVID and is immunocompromised. “No ones attendance was worth their health or life.” My dad gave us his blessing and mailed a giant cutout of himself (in his brand new suit he bought for the wedding) as a surprise for me to take pictures with. Like so many affected by COVID, Kate found joy in the simple ceremony knowing that her love story was a gift. Resiliency After trying to grow their family for over a year with many doctor visits and procedures, Kate and Kyle were finally pregnant. “I was ECSTATIC!” Kate’s dream of having another child was finally coming true. But her pregnancy took a traumatic turn and Kate found out from her doctors that her baby had “no heartbeat.” Hearing those words was devastating, and she and Kyle had to join together to heal from the loss. Kate is thankful to all the family and friends that came to their side to offer support, and highlights the presence of her husband as a significant and powerful source of understanding, companionship, and love. “I assumed all was well (and that it was a girl)! I will never forget those words at my first appointment “there’s no heartbeat”. To be honest, I blacked a lot of it out…I had so many family members and friends rush to our side but ultimately it was my husband. He didn’t say much but he was there — which, for me, was so different than any pregnancy experience I had ever had. Knowing I had a partner to get through it with made a large difference.” Gratitude “I start everyday with a grateful heart.” Today, Kate and Kyle enjoy life as a family of four, welcoming the newest addition, their daughter Brooklyn. In Kate’s own words: “Days will be hard, but if I have made it this far, I feel like I can do anything. I look at the kids and the life I have formed around me and can’t help but be grateful. I remind myself so many people are in the trenches where I once found myself. I know I don’t want to go back there, so I do everything in my power to constantly remind myself. You will find notes to myself in my phone, on my computer, in my car, on my mirrors – always reminding myself of just how grateful I am and knowing someone always has it worse. I hope to be able to keep my optimism for a long, long time but I wouldn’t be me, and I wouldn’t be honest if I said some days were hard. But as I tell my kids and husband, tomorrow is a new day. How lucky are we to get to try again? If you’re in a tough spot, stuck in a valley – know that you have people around you. If you don’t, and you’re reading this – you have my Instagram. Send me a message, I am always here to be a listening ear and an online friend.” The Dress Kate found StoneWear Ceramics on Instagram and she was drawn to my work. “I was instantly drawn to the ACTUAL WORKS OF ART that Erika creates.” She immediately saw her dress made by me in her home. “I have always said if I could wear my dress every day to keep it on display, I would. Now I can display it in my home without having to squeeze my newly postpartum body into it.” Kate’s dress is a bespoke iteration of Suzanne Neville’s 2019, Carmella. The original gown did not include the bow. Suzanne, Kate and LovelyBride, Atlanta worked together to make her dress exactly how Kate envisioned. They lowered the back and added the big bow (a Kate staple). Kate then paired it with a gorgeous rhinestone veil and earrings from Untamed Petals. I am so excited that Kate agreed to become one of our very special ‘Stronger Than Stone Brides’. Her story is inspiring and what strikes me the most is Kate’s resiliency and generous nature to share and help others. She’s a perfect example for us to find hope and strength knowing that ultimately love is the goal. Welcome to the STS Family Kate!